Nineteen alumni from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and their families gathered for fellowship and a seminary report on Wednesday morning of the Baptist Convention of New Mexico’s 2018 Annual Meeting. They met at Las Cruces’ Cracker Barrel restaurant, near the Annual Meeting site. Associate Professor of Evangelism Matt Queen represented the seminary at the meeting. Queen fills the seminary’s L.R. Scarborough Chair of Evangelism or “Chair of Fire.”
During the meeting, the group also celebrate the birthdays of two attendees: Kyle Bueermann, pastor of First Baptist Church, Alamogordo, and Grace Cooksey, daughter of Ronnie Cooksey, pastor of Sandia Baptist Church, Albuquerque. Cooksey has served on the seminary’s board of trustees until his move to New Mexico in 2017.
Queen reported that the seminary has 650 new students for the fall 2018 semester. He asked the group to pray for students to finish their studies. Many begin, he said, but drop out of their degree programs for various reasons prior to graduation. He emphasized the importance of all of the components in the courses of study.
Queen also described two resources for churches and pastors. He shared that preachingsource.com is a free collection of sermons for watching, a blog to inspire preachers and share ideas, and a library with articles on various preaching topics, along with a list of recommended reading on preaching. The site also lists upcoming preaching conferences and events hosted by the seminary.
The second resource Queen presented was seminary’s “Revive This Nation” initiative. The initiative applies endowment funding to churches requesting an evangelistic preacher for a revival or outreach event. The endowment will pay the travel costs for a preacher from Southwestern (a student or professor) to travel to the church and back. The church must provide an honorarium, housing, and meals during the preacher’s stay. Information about the initiative are available on the seminary’s website at www.swbts.edu/rtn.
Finally, Queen spoke about resources and initiatives he works with at the seminary. He suggested his book “Mobilize to Evangelize” for pastoral reading and directed the group to visit swbts.edu/everydayevangelism to learn more about how the seminary is training students to share the Gospel wherever they are. Both resources, he said, are part of the seminary’s emphasis on intentional soul-winning evangelism.
Those in attendance elected Matt Henslee as New Mexico’s SWBTS alumni president. Henslee pastors Mayhill Baptist Church and serves as managing editor for LifeWay Pastors, a division of Facts and Trends (LifeWay). He and Bueermann also produce a podcast called “Not Another Baptist Podcast.” The group also talked about working with the seminary to gather information about graduates who reside or serve in ministry in the state.