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February 26, 2010

Press Photo

Westside Baptist Church Pastor Gary L. Crawford of Gainesville, Fla., will be leading the BCF Annual Missions Conference.

A college deeply committed to spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) students, faculty, staff, and local community await with great anticipation for the start of the annual Missions Conference March 22 - 24.

The conference will begin Monday, March 22 at 10 a.m. in the R.G. Lee Chapel and will conclude Wednesday afternoon. Mission filled chapel services will be led each day by Westside Baptist Church Pastor Gary L. Crawford of Gainesville, Fla. The Lake City native holds a Master's of Divinity and a Doctorate of Ministry from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.

Crawford has worked closely through the years with BCF as the Founder of Amazon Vision Ministries (AVM), a mission sending organization which operates a river boat in the Western Amazon Basin of northern Brazil. They organize, train, equip, and coordinate short-term volunteer mission teams from Southern Baptist churches to minister to the people who live in the remote and isolated villages along the Amazon River.

Crawford has served as the pastor at Westside Baptist for the past 29 years and has visited over 10 different countries and regions sharing the love of Christ with citizens of other nations. During his ministry at Westside, the Lord has called more than 100 people into vocational ministry and missions. Those called are presently serving in 15 countries and nine states, with 21 training in seminaries, universities and/or colleges. Westside remains active in missions through the United States and the world. They currently maintain 12 partnerships with mission organizations.

A number of mission organizations will be represented on campus during the conference offering students detailed information about their programs. Exhibit booths will be set up in the BCF Student Center throughout the conference, and representatives will be on hand to answer any questions. Some of the organizations include the North American Mission Board (NAMB), The Florida Baptist Convention (FBC), the International Mission Board (IMB), Global Youth Ministries, Wycliffe, Chipola Family Ministries, Local Associations, Westside Baptist Church of Gainesville, Fla., Amazon Vision Ministries, Panama City Seafarer Ministry, Panama City Rescue Mission, and Global Outreach Mission.

The BCF Missions Department will host a drop-by meet and greet event Tuesday, March 23 at King's Cup Coffee Shop in the Student Center from 7 to 8:30 p.m. "We want everyone to get to know the representatives on a personal level and to truly see their visions," said Assistant Professor of Missions Rich Elligson. Coffee and refreshments will be provided.

Everyone is encouraged to attend during this motivational time as the BCF community comes together to seek where God would have them serve to fulfill the call to "Change the World Through the Unchanging Word®."

For more information about the upcoming Missions Conference, please call at 800-328-3261 ext. 446.