By Michael Smith

Bell Shoals Baptist Church is preparing to host the 2017 Florida Baptist State Convention pastors’ conference and annual meeting at its Brandon campus on Sunday to Tuesday, November 12-14.

Bell Shoals Pastor of Administration Ed Hancock has been meeting with facilities, food, technology, media and communications staff and volunteers to discuss what needs to happen to make sure everything is in place to have a great State Convention.

“We will need volunteers to assist in any number of areas. Any time visitors are on any of our campuses, we cannot have too many volunteers serving in the areas of parking, security and hospitality,” said a spokesman for Senior Pastor Stephen Rummage. “One of our goals will be that someone from Bell Shoals is ready to assist people coming in from every parking lot and through each set of doors—with a smile on our faces as we serve.”

Appointed Florida Baptist messengers will conduct business at the annual meeting, but anyone can register to attend the pastors’ conference or annual meeting as a guest or visitor. During the event attendees will enjoy great worship and hear practical messages from the Word of God from a number of different speakers.

The annual meeting and pastors’ conference originally were slated to be hosted by Wayside Baptist Church in Miami, which is undergoing an extensive renovation of its worship center. The Florida Baptist Convention staff learned in June that renovations would not be completed in time for the annual meeting.

As president of the Florida Baptist State Convention, Pastor Rummage wanted to do everything possible to make sure Florida Baptists have a great State Convention.

“When we found out we couldn’t host the convention in Miami this year as originally planned, it was a pretty easy decision to offer to make Bell Shoals’ Brandon campus available for Florida Baptists,” he said.

“This is the only time all year when we as the Florida Baptist family have the opportunity to get together for praise, worship, fellowship and prayer to see how God wants to direct or re-direct us in the days to come.”

For information about the 2017 Florida Baptist State Convention annual meeting and pastors’ conference, visit To learn more about Bell Shoals Baptist Church, visit or call 689-4229.

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