My Decision Not to Run for Re-Election in the GBC

The following is an adaptation of a letter shared earlier today with Dr. J. Robert White and Mr. Thomas Hammond.

Georgia Baptists,

My years of service among you have given me some of the greatest blessings of my ministry. This last year in particular, serving as GBC President, has been a distinct privilege. As we head toward our annual meeting, I really believe Georgia is on “Mission Possible.”

It is with deepest gratitude that I want to share with you my decision not to seek reelection to a second term as Convention President. Our church recently affirmed our largest building project in our 65-year history. Significant work will begin for Emmanuel Baptist in 2019. While my church and church staff have been gracious and supportive, I feel I must prioritize my duties as a husband, father, and local church pastor.

I look forward to continuing my service to my larger Baptist family through preaching revivals and conferences and through my role as Chairman of the SBC Executive Committee. These are challenging times for our churches and various conventions. So, I earnestly covet the prayers of my Georgia Baptist family.

The announcement is late in relation to the convention but I pray the short time frame will help prevent the campaigns that have needlessly divided our convention in recent years.  I did want to announce today, in time for interested leaders to have the full weekend to pray, contact their church leaders, and seek the mind of God about a willingness to be nominated.

I know the ministries of the mission board will continue to have strong leadership under Brother Thomas Hammond. He definitely has “big shoes to fill” but is the right man for the job.  My prayers will be with each of you as we seek to win our communities, our state, our nation, and our world to Jesus Christ.

Richest blessings,

Mike Stone