International Baptist Leader Coming to Missouri

October 15, 2007

The General Secretary of the Baptist World Alliance will be speaking at First Baptist Church of Lee's Summit on October 16 and Fee Fee Baptist Church in Bridgeton on October 17. Both events start at 7 p.m. and are open and free to everyone. Dr. Neville Callam was elected as the first non-Caucasian BWA leader in July. If you live in either area, I hope you will make it out to the events.

"I am delighted the Baptists of Missouri will have the opportunity to get acquainted with the new BWA General Secretary," states Baptist General Convention of Missouri executive director Jim Hill. "God is doing something special through the BWA, and He has invited us to be a part of it."

The event will offer Baptists a chance to meet Callam and hear his vision for the future of the global Baptist witness. The program will feature a brief 10 minute multimedia presentation of Callam's life and his accomplishments. Callam will speak and offer the opportunity for people to ask him questions. There will also be a brief 5-7 minute multimedia presentation about the BWA for those who are unfamiliar with the organization.

Callam was elected General Secretary of the Baptist World Alliance by the BWA General Council during its meeting in Accra, Ghana, West Africa, on July 6, 2007. A Jamaican, Callam was a BWA vice president from 2000 to 2005, and has served on numerous committees, commissions and workgroups of the BWA, including the General Council and Executive Committee.

Callam was president of the Jamaica Baptist Union (JBU) between 1985 and 1987 and from 2000 to 2002, and has held all senior positions in the Jamaican convention, including that of General Treasurer and Acting General Secretary. He is a former vice president of the Caribbean Baptist Fellowship.

A media manager, he founded, managed, and chaired the board of the religious radio station, The Breath of Change (TBC FM), was a founding director of the National Religious Media Company of Jamaica which operates LOVE FM and LOVE TV, and was chairman of the board of the Public Broadcasting Corporation of Jamaica, a public statutory organization. He is also a former chairman of the Media Commission of the JBU which has responsibility for the denomination's radio ministry, Web site, newspaper, and all publications.

An educator, Callam taught at the United Theological College of the West Indies, the Caribbean Graduate School of Theology, Jamaica Theological Seminary, and as a guest lecturer at Barbados Baptist College. He sat on the University Council of Jamaica, the country's accreditation body for colleges and universities.

Callam has authored five books and has also published articles in academic journals as well as several book chapters. He has spoken at fora, symposia, seminars and workshops in many countries.

An ordained minister since 1977, Callam gave his life to the Lord in his teen years and grew up in a strong Baptist family where his father was a church deacon and his mother was involved in various church ministries. Callam has served the Grace/Mineral Heights Circuit and the Tarrant/Balmagie Circuit of churches in Jamaica as senior pastor.

He is a graduate of the United Theological College of the West Indies, the University of the West Indies, Harvard Divinity School, and is a specialist in Christian ethics and theology.

Callam is married to Dulcie, his wife of more than 30 years, and they have two adult children, son, Gairy, and daughter, Diedre.

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