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Stories by Francisca Jones

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Passing the baton

Dwindling, aging white congregation in Pine Bluff dissolves, turns over church to growing black congregation that never had a permanent home

Subscriber onlyPINE BLUFF -- In an act embracing the Southern Baptist idea that God owns everything and it's a person's responsibility to use what one has for the glory of God, Forrest Park Baptist Church has passed on its building and the property on which it stands to the congregation of New Fellowship Baptist Church. Continue reading...

8,000 Witnesses expected in Fort Smith

Subscriber onlyMore than 8,000 Jehovah's Witnesses will gather this month in Fort Smith for three regional conventions devoted to educating others about persistence and building resilience through Scripture. Continue reading...

Southern Baptists repudiate 'alt-right,' white supremacy

Subscriber onlySouthern Baptists voted Wednesday to condemn the political movement known as the "alt-right" after failing to take up a similar resolution Tuesday afternoon and throwing the national convention into turmoil. Continue reading...

Southern Baptists re-elect chief, adopt moral leadership measure

Subscriber only Steve Gaines, pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church in Cordova, Tenn., was elected to a second term as president of the Southern Baptist Convention at Tuesday's annual meeting. Continue reading...

American Indians seen in need of evangelism; Southern Baptists target reservations

Subscriber onlyPHOENIX -- There is a need to reach out more to American Indians and bring them to Christianity with the knowledge that becoming Christian does not mean losing their heritage, leaders of the Fellowship of Native American Christians said Monday. Continue reading...

Outreach to millennials vital, Baptist group says

Subscriber onlyPHOENIX -- Making a greater effort to reach out to millennials and converting them to Christ must be a priority, members of the Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship said Sunday during their annual business meeting held in conjunction with the Southern Baptist Convention. Continue reading...

Membership slide on minds as Southern Baptists gather

Subscriber onlySteve Gaines wraps up his term as president of the Southern Baptist Convention this week as the denomination continues to look for ways to address a lingering slide in membership numbers. Continue reading...

Preaching from the book of joy

2 Arkansas clergymen among 12 chosen to read through text of Philippians at Southern Baptist Convention Pastors’ Conference

Subscriber onlyPastor Jimmy Meek of Immanuel Baptist Church in El Dorado and Pastor Jamar Andrews of Word Baptist Church in Jonesboro will join 10 other ministers Sunday and Monday as they preach their way through the Book of Philippians at the Southern Baptist Convention's Pastors' Conference in Phoenix. Continue reading...

By their fruits ...

Church set to celebrate keeping the faith for 125 years, having steadily grown from 4 to 9,000 with vibrant spirit, community involvement

Subscriber onlyOnce a congregation of four members, Saint Mark Baptist Church in Little Rock -- with a record attendance of more than 9,000 members a month -- kicks off a weeklong celebration of its 125th anniversary today as the largest predominantly black church in Arkansas. Continue reading...

Hallowed ground

Ceremony at St. Scholastica Monastery marks beginning of new era with new building on the way

Subscriber onlyAfter a yearslong effort of planning, fundraising and perseverance, the Benedictine nuns of St. Scholastica Monastery in Fort Smith have broken ground on what will be their new home. Continue reading...

Author touts a Benedictine way of life

Subscriber onlyBelieving that life on a farm in the country would bring her peace and contentment, Jerusalem Greer set out to quickly sell her North Little Rock home. Continue reading...

State's Mormon mission leader promoted

Subscriber onlyFor Mission President of Arkansas Taniela Wakolo, the decision to join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1994 began with a question from two of the church's members. Continue reading...

Behind the bells

Bell ringers gather at Little Rock’s Trinity Episcopal Cathedral for annual Seven Towers Festival

Subscriber onlyWhen the change ringing bells of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral are rung, the sound resonates throughout the surrounding Little Rock neighborhood. Continue reading...

Jewish fest a cultural celebration

Subscriber onlyThe annual Jewish Food and Culture Festival returns Sunday to War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock. Continue reading...

Breaking the ice

Feasting, fellowship, interfaith fun reign as Islamic Center hosts the Little Rock International Food Festival

Subscriber onlyInternational residents in the Little Rock area shared cuisines and cultures in an expression of unity and cultural diversity April 15 at the second annual Little Rock International Food Festival. Continue reading...