|Baptists Together (Baptist Union of Great Britain)|
Logo of Baptists Together
|Distinct fellowships||Old Baptist Union,
Baptist Union of Wales,
New Connexion of General Baptists
|Associations||World Council of Churches,
Baptist World Alliance,
Conference of European Churches,
European Baptist Federation,
Churches Together in Britain and Ireland,
Fellowship of British Baptists,
Churches Together in England
|Region||England and Wales.|
|Origin||The Baptist Union of Great Britain was formed when the General Baptists and Particular Baptists came together in 1891.|
|Separations||Grace Baptist Assembly,
Association of Grace Baptist Churches,
Seventh Day Baptists,
Gospel Standard Baptists
|Aid organization||National Council for Voluntary Youth Services,
BMS World Mission,
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The Particular Baptist Missionary Society for Propagating the Gospel among the Heathen (later the Baptist Missionary Society, and now BMS World Mission) was organised in 1792, under the leadership of Andrew Fuller (1754–1815), John Sutcliff (1752–1814), and William Carey (1761–1834). When the Baptist Union was founded in 1813, it was a Particular Baptist organisation. In 1833, it was restructured to allow for membership of General Baptists. General and Particular Baptist work was united in the Baptist Union in 1891. The Baptist Historical Society was founded in 1908.
The basis of fellowship in the Baptist Union is a three-part "Declaration of Principle" stating belief in Jesus, Christian baptism, and world evangelisation. The structure includes an annual Baptist Assembly, and the Baptist Union Council, which is made up of representatives from the 13 regional associations and the six Baptist Colleges affiliated with the Union. The national resource and offices are in Didcot, Oxfordshire, England, having moved from Baptist Church House 2–6 Southampton Row, London in 1989.
In 2013 Lynn Green was elected, with no votes against, as the first female General Secretary of the Baptist Union of Great Britain to commence in September 2013. She was received at the vote by a standing ovation and her inaugural message included "I believe that our union is ready for generational change... It is time to cast off the institutional mindset that has served us well in the past, and embrace a new way of being for the 21st century."
Also in 2013, the Union publicly re-branded itself as "Baptists Together" and introduced a new logo to reflect the change (although it is still known in an official capacity by its former name, the Baptist Union of Great Britain).
Baptists Together consists of around 2,150 churches, with a total membership of almost 140,000 individuals.
The Fellowship of British Baptists and BMS World Mission brings together in ministry the churches that are members of the Baptist Union of Scotland, Wales, the Irish Baptist Networks, and the Baptist Union of Great Britain. It is itself a member of The National Council for Voluntary Youth Services (NCVYS) because of its work to promote young people's personal and social development.
The Union maintains membership with Christian ecumenical organisations such as Churches Together in England, Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, the Conference of European Churches, and the World Council of Churches.
Since 2001 the Baptist Union of Great Britain has been divided into 13 regional associations:
- Central Baptist Association
- East Midlands Baptist Association
- Eastern Baptist Association
- Heart of England Baptist Association
- London Baptist Association
- North Western Baptist Association
- Northern Baptist Association
- South Eastern Baptist Association
- South Wales Baptist Association
- South West Baptist Association
- Southern Counties Baptist Association
- West of England Baptist Association
- Yorkshire Baptist Association
The principal of the Union is the General Secretary.
List of General Secretaries
- 1898 - 1924 John Howard Shakespeare
- 1925 - 1951 Melbourn Aubrey
- 1951 - 1967 Ernest A. Payne
- 1967 - 1982 David S. Russell
- 1982 - 1991 Bernard Green
- 1991 - 2006 David Coffey
- 2006 - 2013 Jonathan Edwards
- 2013 to date Lynn Green
In April 1971, at the Baptist Union Assembly, Michael Taylor, then Principal at the Northern Baptist College, asserted that, "I believe that God was active in Jesus, but it will not do to say quite categorically; Jesus is God." The statement bred controversy, and some charged him with denying the Deity of Christ. Nigel G. Wright, later Principal of Spurgeon's College, commenting on the affair, claimed the, "Spectre of theological downgrade had lingered within the denomination throughout the 20th century," alluding to the Downgrade Controversy of a century earlier.
- Baptist Union of Scotland
- Religion in the United Kingdom
- Regent's Park College, Oxford
- Baptist churches in the United Kingdom
- Spurgeon and the "Downgrade Controversy"
- Historic England. "Baptist Church House/Kingsgate House (1378782)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 28 July 2013.
- Allen, Robert ‘Bob’ (6 May 2013), "Woman Named to Lead British Baptists", News, Associated Baptist Press, retrieved 2013-07-28
- The Baptist Union of Great Britain : Baptist Union logo, retrieved 2014-09-09
- Full list of NCVYS member organisations Archived 12 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Freedom with Foundation: The George Beasley-Murray Memorial Lecture". Baptist Times. Archived from the original on 2016-08-16. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- Thomas, Geoff. "The Divine Glory of Christ". Alfred Place Baptist Church. Archived from the original on 2016-08-16. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- "Federation Speaker, in Congregational Concern" (PDF). Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Concerns. 1993. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-08-16.
- "Liberal Baptist Denominations". Way of Life Literature. 2014-04-13. Archived from the original on 2016-08-16. Retrieved 2016-08-16.
- Wardin, Albert W jr, Baptists Around the World.
- Payne, Ernest Alexander, The Baptist Union: A Short History.
- Brown, Raymond, The English Baptists of the Eighteenth Century.
- Briggs, JHY, The English Baptists of the Nineteenth Century.
- Clements, Keith, Baptists in the Twentieth Century.
- Baptist Historical Society - official Web Site
- Baptist Union of Great Britain - official Web Site
- The Baptist Times - Web Site of the official newspaper of the BUGB
- Incarnate Network - Web Site of the church planting network of BUGB Missions Dept
- The National Council for Voluntary Youth Services (NCVYS) - England-wide organisation of which the Baptist Union is a member