Although all of the speakers today have been excellent, the most anticipated Baptist speaker tonight - and yet another layman - is now at the podium. John Grisham, famous author of legal novels, is a longtime Baptist laymen who is very active in church and mission activities, is offering his own observations about the place and need for diversity in Baptist life. He has a rapt audience.
Other quick observations: Kyle Matthews, a wonderful musician who performed special music earlier tonight, is a wonderful songwriter, singer and storyteller. Earlier in this service, Jimmy Carter asked participants to share their personal thoughts about "where do we go next" (by dropping suggestions in the offering plates). Now that is a very Baptist thing to do!