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HPU welcomes BGCT’s Dr. Evans and Dr. Hardage for discussion on race relations

BROWNWOOD – September 4, 2020 – Howard Payne University recently hosted Dr. Michael Evans, president of the Baptist General Convention of Texas (BGCT) and pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Mansfield, and Dr. David Hardage, executive director of the BGCT, to speak about the need for Christians to listen to and seek good for others. The message presented by Dr. Evans and Dr. Hardage was a continuation of a series of recorded discussions the two had earlier in 2020 regarding the role of Christians in race relations.

“We agreed that we need to help our fellow men and women, that we need to have a dialogue about race relations and how we as Christians should model that to the world,” said Dr. Evans. “We believe that the ‘big fix’ begins in the church and the body of Christ. When we look at John 13:33-35, that is quite clear.”

Dr. Hardage echoed Dr. Evans and said that current events and general public awareness are offering Christians the opportunity to take the lead in finding resolutions to longstanding issues.

“As Christians, we can step in and bridge the gap between society and church and demonstrate what it means to love one another and to practice that love,” he said. “This is a moment in time that God has given us and we can’t let it pass.”

The discussion was held as part of HPU’s weekly Chapel services this semester, which have the overarching theme of “Love One Another.” The foundational verses for the theme are John 13:34-35 (NIV), in which Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

“This emphasis on loving one another is an outgrowth of our university’s mission to equip students for intellectual inquiry, personal and professional integrity and service to God and humanity,” said Dr. Cory Hines, HPU president. “Throughout the course of this year, we will be talking about how we can obey this command from Christ. I’m grateful that we had the opportunity to start this semester’s Chapel services with insights from Dr. Evans and Dr. Hardage.”

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Cutline #1: Pictured are Robert Morrison, HPU Board of Trustees member; Dr. Cory Hines, HPU president; Dr. David Hardage, executive director of the BGCT; and Dr. Michael Evans, president of the BGCT.

Cutline #2: HPU’s “Love One Another” Chapel logo