One is a founding member of the anti-“woke” Conservative Baptist Network, and the other is known for his involvement in racial reconciliation efforts.
Albert Mohler has new competition in the race to become the next president of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Two pastors, Ed Litton and Mike Stone, accepted nominations in the past week, each representing different emphases for the future of the SBC as the denomination grapples with an escalating debate over its approach to race.
Mohler has been in the running for over a year; the SBC canceled its previous election along with its 2020 annual meeting due to COVID-19.
Mohler is already a big name in the SBC. The president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, he’s currently the longest-serving entity head in the denomination and regularly weighs in on current issues on his daily podcast, The Briefing.
But with that platform and prominence has come controversy, especially in recent months. Southern Baptists and evangelical onlookers saw the former Never Trumper endorse the president for reelection, decry Trump’s role in the attempted insurrection, and defend his decision to vote for him. He also led seminary presidents in a letter condemning critical race theory as incompatible with SBC beliefs.
“Dr. Mohler’s shifting positions on political issues have left a significant number of Southern Baptists dissatisfied with his candidacy,” said Dave Miller, editor of the SBC Voices blog and a pastor in Iowa. “Others feel he has enough power and control already and does not need to add SBC president to his other positions of power.
Stone, a senior pastor in South Georgia and former chairman of the Executive Committee of the SBC, was nominated last week. He immediately garnered endorsements from Tom Ascol, president of Founders Ministries, and Gerald Harris, retired editor of the …