NEW OREANS — Southern Baptist messengers got their first look Wednesday at a website that provides resources to help churches prevent sexual abuse and that will eventually include an online sexual abuse registry of abusers. The registry currently has no names because its creators still are vetting people for potential inclusion.

NEW ORLEANS — Southern Baptists commissioned 79 newly appointed missionaries on Tuesday in New Orleans where the SBC annual meeting is underway. Nearly 12,000 messengers watched as the fledgling International Mission Board missionaries crossed the stage in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, some silhouetted behind screens to conceal their identities because they're deploying to countries hostile to the gospel.

ALBANY, Ga. — Georgia pastor Michael Catt who showed Hollywood that wholesome family films can still be huge box office successes has died, his church announced on Monday. Catt, executive producer of the Christian movies Flywheel, Facing the Giants, Fireproof and Courageous, had been battling prostate cancer and had taken a turn for the worse in May.

ROME, Ga. — Student ministers in Georgia are reporting a growing spiritual awareness among school-aged kids, the latest evidence seen last week when 73 middle and high schoolers made salvation decisions at an IMPACT camp at Shorter University. “God is clearly doing something in this next generation,” said Chris Trent, Next Gen catalyst for the Georgia Baptist Mission Board.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ga. — A local official has backed off threats to fine Flat Creek Baptist Church for hosting an evangelistic outreach that he claimed violated zoning regulations. The outreach involved a car show that attracted more than 1,200 people to Flat Creek Baptist Church on Saturday.

BETHLEHEM, Ga. — Researchers from the Barna Group have identified stark differences of opinion about ministry between pastors and unchurched people in the communities they serve. “Eighty-four percent of pastors believe the church’s main role is to tell others about Jesus,” Barna said in an article published last week. “Non-Christians, on the other hand, think local churches should focus outward, providing practical help for people in their community.”

FAYETTEVILLE, Ga. — More than 100 vintage and classic automobiles were spread across the Flat Creek Baptist Church campus on Saturday in defiance of government officials who had threatened to levy a hefty fine if the congregation didn’t cancel a car show. “We’re not doing this in a spirit of rebellion,” said Pastor Josh Saefkow, standing amid hundreds of car enthusiasts and church members. “We’re doing this out of a commitment to Christ because there are people in this parking lot right now who are broken and in need of a Savior. That’s why we’re doing this event, to point men, women, boys, and girls to Jesus.”

HULL, Ga. — Sharon Reid is proud of her great uncle Harry Spratlin, a Georgia soldier killed in action in the waning days of World War I. Reid and her cousins gathered this Memorial Day weekend to lay a wreath at the base of his headstone in a rural cemetery just up the road from the farm where he was raised.

ALBANY, Ga. — Michael Catt, the groundbreaking Georgia pastor who served as executive producer of the Christian movies Flywheel, Facing the Giants, Fireproof and Courageous, is facing setbacks in his battle with prostate cancer, his family said on social media Wednesday. “In recent months, his health has taken a turn for the worse, and he has had several surgeries, hospitalizations and emergency room visits,” the family said. “Recently, doctors found a tumor in his brain stem.

TOCCOA, Ga. — Some students who enrolled in the new Christian learning centers that have opened in northeast Georgia are getting more than Bible-based education. They’re finding salvation. More than 30 students in Stephens, Banks and Franklin counties have made professions of faith this school year through the Christian learning centers opened over the past two years.

ATLANTA, Ga. — Charles Stanley, the beloved Atlanta preacher whose In Touch Ministries reaches millions of people each day via television and radio, is being remembered as a man of prayer and faithfulness and an unyielding follower of Christ. Stanley died on Tuesday at his home. He was 90. “His legacy is going to continue to touch lives for generations,” said Georgia Baptist Convention President Josh Saefkow, pastor of Flat Creek Baptist Church in Fayetteville.

GAINESVILLE, Ga. – Georgia businessman Ricardo Avila has resigned his seat on the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, the latest of …

Retired Pastor Darell Young sits on the back pew at Hiltonia Baptist Church where he is serving in an interim role. Interim Pastor Darell Young poses outside Hiltonia Baptist Church in east Georgia. …

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