Former President Carter, leading a meeting of thousands of Baptists across racial and theological lines, said Friday he hopes the gathering will help convince conservative Southern Baptists and other Christians to end divisions over the Bible and politics.
"We can disagree on the death penalty, we can disagree on homosexuality, we can disagree on the status of women and still bind our hearts together in a common, united, generous, friendly, loving commitment," Carter said...
But Carter was not the only "celebrity."
Author John Grisham, a Baptist, condemned the literal interpretation of Scripture, saying it led to exclusionary practices that weakened churches.
From another source reporting on the same story:
"The event itself is momentous," said George Mason, pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas. "The idea that we can bring together such historically diverse Baptists in one place and celebrate our tradition of faith together is quite remarkable. I only wish all Baptists were here." (emphasis mine, JK
And from this morning's Edmonton Journal, reporting on its religion page on the event (unfortunately I cannot link to the story)
The leadership of the Southern Baptist Convention was not invited to the gathering, though individuals were welcome to attend. (again, emphasis mine, JK)
I guess inclusivity only goes so far.