The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) Pastors Conference has announced it will provide $1,000 travel scholarships to pastors of “average-sized churches” who cannot otherwise afford to participate in the Pastors Conference and SBC annual meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, in June.
In keeping with the focus of Pastors Conference 2017 on pastors of small and mid-sized congregations, an estimated 5 to 20 scholarships will be available beginning April 10 on a “first-come basis.”
There could be more scholarships available because they are being funded by donations from larger churches and the number will be determined by how much money is received, the Pastors Conference leadership team announced March 30 on the SBC Voices blog.
The Pastors Conference will feature preaching, worship and prayer to undergird the ministry of pastors and their wives. The sessions at the Phoenix Convention Center will be held June 11–12, prior to the SBC’s June 13–14 annual meeting there. The 12 conference preachers lead churches with worship attendance between 60 to 500.
Pastors Conference President Dave Miller said larger churches traditionally have helped fund the event. However, this year’s conference costs have been covered by New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary’s Caskey Center for Church Excellence and other sponsors, freeing the conference’s traditional sponsors to help in a new way.
Churches that contribute to the scholarships will be recognized at the Pastors Conference and in the event program.
Pastors can apply for the scholarships at SBCVoices.com beginning April 10 at 11 a.m. Eastern Time.
To qualify for a scholarship applicants must lead churches with average worship attendance of less than 200 people and the congregations they lead must be “either unable or unwilling to fund expenses” for Pastors Conference participation.
The scholarship money may be used for travel, hotel, meals, book purchases and any other convention-related resources. Scholarship recipients must agree to participate in all sessions of the Pastors Conference and SBC annual meeting. Recipients who end up not traveling to Phoenix must return the full $1,000 award, according to SBC Voices. (BP)