Baptist World Alliance, BWA News Release

BWA receiving human rights award nominations, prepares for Human Rights Day

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The Baptist World Alliance® (BWA) has begun the process of accepting nominations for the 2013 Denton and Janice Lotz Human Rights Award. Nominations close on November 30.

Any Baptist individual, church, or organization can submit a nomination, and any Baptist is eligible to receive the award. The award is intended to recognize and give visibility to the work of men and women who have done outstanding work in defending and promoting human rights as defined by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Persons may not make nominations on their own behalf.

The awardee will be announced at the March 2013 BWA Executive Committee meeting and the award presented during the Annual Gathering in July 2013 in Jamaica.

The BWA is also making preparations for the observance of BWA Human Rights Day on December 8 and 9, depending on whether churches worship on Saturday or Sunday. This year’s observance emphasizes prayer for countries that experience egregious violations of human rights, and in particular, violations of religious liberty, with special focus on Nigeria.

Boko Haram, a militant Islamic group, has carried out a series of bombings and other acts of violence that have led to numerous deaths, injuries, destruction of property and widespread fear in Nigeria. Christian churches and government offices and buildings, including police stations, have been among the main targets of the militants. More than 1,400 people in northern and central Nigeria have been killed in attacks by Boko Haram since 2010.

Nigeria is home to the largest number of Baptists in Africa with BWA statistics showing the Nigerian Baptist Convention having a total 2.5 million members in more than 9,300 churches and the Mambilla Baptist Convention having approximately 23,000 members in more than 250 churches.

Baptist World Alliance®
© September 7, 2012

The Baptist World Alliance, founded in 1905, is a fellowship of 253 conventions and unions in 130 countries and territories comprising 51 million baptized believers in 176,000 churches. For more than 100 years, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.