The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) split from the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) in 1991. While the SBC is doubling down on its belief that men should be the leaders of the church by banning female preachers, the CBF continues its tradition of allowing women in the pulpit. After an SBC meeting reiterated the ban, the CBF featured female preacher Courtney Stamey at its General Assembly on June 29.
Mark Wingfield of Baptist Global News states Stamey, the senior pastor at Northside Baptist Church in Clinton, Mississippi, is one of 105 female pastors or co-pastors in the CBF. Stamey used her platform to speak on the pandemic and politics and acknowledge the importance of testimony.
For Christians, one important way to seek refinement is to develop and share a testimony, she urged. “Sharing our testimony is how we will get to the silver, how we will get to what remains.”
Amid all the problems of the moment, including a ferocious affinity for Christian nationalism, “the thing that keeps on troubling me, that’s stirring up in my soul, is how all of us good Christian folks who are always concerned about what’s going on in the world haven’t been honest with ourselves about what’s going on in the world.
“I suggest that we submit ourselves to that purifying fire and testimony so that we might find what remains. … What I’m challenging us to do is to find what is the dross and what is the silver.”
But an important note about testimony is “we can’t do it alone,” she explained. “A testimony needs ears to hear it, and it takes courage to say it out loud. … Testimony is honest, and that’s why it’s so difficult.”