Forum 84 - Apr 2013

(see below for some excerpts)

BHQ Essay Prize Winners for 2012

Every time Malyon College runs its course on Baptist History and Principles, we offer a prize for the best essay. Dr David Parker usually teaches part of the course, and we are involved in setting the essay topic.

The course was taught last in August 2012 and we have pleasure in announcing that this time there were two equal winners. Both top essays were judged by members of the BHQ panel to be of such a quality that it was best to award a joint prize. Each recipient received copies of our latest books, Something more than Gold, and Pressing on with the Gospel, a year’s membership in BHQ and a cash prize (the total amount for the prize was raised by 50% and divided equally).

The prizes went to Matt Littlefield, Youth Pastor at Beenleigh and District Baptist Church, and Tim Lucas of Gateway Baptist Church. Matt’s prize was presented by the chair of BHQ at our meeting on 23 Feb (see picture above), while Tim’s was presented later at Gateway Church (left—centre, with Pastor Jason Elsmore and right, Anne Klose, the recipient of the last prize).

The essay topic required students to discuss a statement made by a NZ Baptist leader who claimed that contemporary Baptists are influenced too much by ideas dating to the earliest days of Baptist life stemming from the earlier Anabaptists rather than the Bible. He claims that because of this there is too much emphasis on the independence of the local church at the expense of interdependency. This claim also had to be discussed in relation to the situation in Queensland.

Abbreviated versions of their essays are printed in this issue (without full references or bibliography) - (enquire about paper copies). For more details contact the prize-winners direct.

Two New Publications Launched

Two new publications have been launched by the Baptist Heritage Queensland – both updates of earlier works.

Baptists in Queensland is an information book about the practical aspects, beliefs and history of Baptists in Queensland, and was the first book ever published by BHSQ when it appeared in 1994. It sold very well, with some reprints necessary and a second edition in 2000. It was therefore long overdue for an update, especially on account of the many changes that have taken place in the 12 years since the ‘millennium edition’ was produced.

It is still the same size at 52 pages but now has a full colour cover featuring 4 Queensland churches. It has been extensively revised with new material (including a section on Baptists and Marriage) and changes to reflect the current state of affairs. Statistics have been updated in the light of the recent census. The book retains it original aim as an introduction to Baptist life locally here in Queensland for new and existing members, students and enquirers. This revision was largely funded by Queensland Baptists who will distribute copies amongst the churches. Additional copies from BHQ cost $5 plus $2.50 p & p.

The other book is The National Guide to Australian Baptist Historical Resources and Services which includes information from every state and the national Baptist bodies about their records, with contact details of archives and libraries from which more information may be obtained. It also contains a list of Baptist periodicals in Australian libraries. It has information about Baptist logos and advice about the nature and use of Baptist records.

This 40 page book, which is a ‘print on demand’ publication, also has a companion website with additional material. The publication is designed for students and others wanting to know where to find sources of information about Baptists in Australia. The help of Archivists and others in all states of Australia, Australian Baptist Ministries and Global Interaction is acknowledged in the compiling of this resource book. Copies are available from BHQ or the Archives at a special introductory price of $5.00 plus $2.50 p & p.

Memorial Books Cases for Archives

Two attractive display cabinets have been placed in the Baptist Archives as a memorial to one of our keenest members – Rev Mel Williams. The cases have been donated by Mrs Madeleine Williams as a fitting tribute to her husband who died 20 July 2011 at 86 years of age after a long ministry. Mr Williams was trained at NZ Bible Training Institute and the Baptist Theological College of NSW. He served in several pastorates in NSW from 1950 onwards before coming to Queensland in 1970 where he led churches at Nundah and Bundaberg. He was also interim pastor at several other churches. As well as his original BSc degree, he gained his BD and researched Neo-Pentecostalism for his MA degree, producing a valuable study of that movement which deserves wider circulation.

Mr Williams was a long time member of BHQ and wrote two of its popular books – Cameos of Baptist Men in 19th Century Queensland, and Mission to Queensland, as well as many articles for the Society’s newsletter. He was also a deeply involved in numismatics with a good personal collection of items. He wrote many articles and won awards for his work in this field.

The cabinets are being used in the Archives to display its artefacts and book collection. Another cabinet donated earlier houses important Minutes of the Baptist Union of Queensland.