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Letter to African American Baptist Conventions on Their Joint Board Meeting

National Council of Churches - Common Witness - To the Conventions of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc.; Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc.; National Missionary Baptist Convention, and the National Baptist Convention of America

Adopted November 11, 2004

In care of:

Rev. Dr. William J. Shaw, President, National Baptist Convention USA, Inc.
Rev. Dr. Major L. Jemison, President, Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc.
Rev. Dr. Melvin V. Wade, Sr., National Missionary Baptist Convention
Rev. Dr. Stephen J. Thurston, National Baptist Convention of America

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

At the 2004 General Assembly of the National Council of Churches and Church World Service meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, Nov. 9-11, we greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Today we join our hearts and prayers with you as you plan for and anticipate the historic Joint Mid-Winter Board Meeting of four major African American Baptist Conventions.

As you meet together for the first time since 1895, we know that you rejoice that this meeting is, by God's grace, now possible. As four distinguished member communions of this National Council we claim you as our own and delight in your bold and confident theme, "Christ People - Empowered to Witness as One." We commend your leadership in taking this important step for the unity in Christ we long have sought.

Even now we pledge ourselves to uphold you and all who will attend in our prayers. We dare to hope that in God's mercy your goals will bear fruit. We shall pray that the Holy Spirit will attend you in the discovery of a new and deeper calling in faith and mission.

When next we meet for the 2005 General Assembly we hope that you will find it feasible to share with this fellowship word of your meeting and its outcomes.

May all of you be blessed and abundantly renewed by your gathering. May the grace, mercy and peace of God attend you.

The Delegates and Young Adult Stewards to the NCC/CWS 2004 General Assembly

Bishop Thomas L. Hoyt, Jr.

The Reverend Robert G. Edgar
General Secretary