CLEVELAND, Tenn. (BP) – Daniel Dickard, pastor of Friendly Avenue Baptist Church in Greensboro, N.C., will be nominated for president of the 2023 SBC Pastors’ Conference. Jordan Easley, senior pastor of the First Baptist Church of Cleveland, Tenn., announced his intention to nominated Dickard in a video shared on social media Wednesday (March 16), saying his primary reason for the nomination is that Dickard “loves the Southern Baptist Convention.”
Official nominations and voting for the 2023 conference president will take place June 13, 2022, during the second day of the 2022 SBC Pastors’ Conference, which precedes the 2022 SBC Annual Meeting in Anaheim, Calif. The 2023 SBC Pastors’ Conference is scheduled to be held in Charlotte, N.C., June 11-12, 2023, immediately preceding the 2023 SBC Annual Meeting.
“Daniel has a passion for the Gospel, a desire to make disciples, and I believe he has a calling on his life to equip and encourage pastors,” Easley said in the video.
“He believes, like so many of us believe, that the SBC Pastor’s Conference should highlight the best of what it means to be a Southern Baptist. It should spotlight diversity in church size, style, shape and geographical scope … but it should also be centered on our common mission and shared cooperative effort.”
Easley pointed to Dickard’s lifetime of involvement in SBC life as a key qualification for the role, including his childhood and call to ministry in a Southern Baptist church and his education at Southern Baptist schools.
Dickard graduated from North Greenville University, which is affiliated with the South Carolina Baptist Convention, before going on to receive his M.Div. and Ph.D. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.
“Daniel loves the SBC,” Easley said. “And not only does he love the SBC, he admires the work of pastors in the SBC and wants to lead a conference that blesses them, equips them, and also encourages and motivates them in their ministries.”
During and after his studies at Southwestern, Dickard also served at the seminary in several capacities, including as instructor of preaching and dean of students from June 2017 until he joined Friendly Avenue in May 2018.
According to Annual Church Profile reports, Friendly Avenue counted 601 members in 2021 and gave $162,630 – 11.1 percent of undesignated receipts – through the Cooperative Program.
“There is no greater calling, in my opinion, than pastoring God’s people and there is no weightier duty within that great calling than stewarding God’s Word faithfully,” Dickard said in written comments for Baptist Press. “It is not the size of a church that matters; it is the health and faithfulness of a church that matters. The SBC Pastors’ Conference is one venue where pastors are edified, equipped and encouraged to be faithful to the Word and challenged in our mission to the world.
“My vision for the Southern Baptist Convention Pastors Conference would be to highlight a wide swath of faithful SBC pastors, regardless of church size, age, shape, and geographical scope, as we focus on the idea that character matters in ministry.”
Easley said in addition to character, Dickard plans to focus on “strong biblical preaching.”
“We, as Southern Baptists, share the belief that the Bible is authoritative, inspired, inerrant, sufficient, and totally trustworthy,” Easley said. “Our pastors conference should reflect that same high view of Scripture from all its selected preachers.”
Dickard said his goal for the conference will be to “feed and encourage pastors and preachers through the faithful exposition of the Word,” adding: “Biblical preaching has never been about a particular style or preference. Rather, biblical preaching emerges from a theological conviction that all Scripture is inspired by God. We, as Southern Baptists, all share the belief that the Bible is authoritative, inspired, inerrant, sufficient, and totally trustworthy. Our pastors conference should reflect that same high view of Scripture from all its selected preachers.”
Dickard is married to Cassie, and they have three children – Conrad, Kesyd, Carolina.
This article was written by Laura Erlanson, managing editor for Baptist Press. It was published on baptistpress.com.