LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Three statewide Baptist church conventions are in Lufkin with a mission: building the church, the community, the nation up through positivity.
Church leaders are not in denial of all the bad influences across Texas.
"There's a problem with alcoholism, there's a problem with drugs, violence, family violence... That's a negative influence in any community," said Rev. Williams Ricks of First Missionary Baptist Church.
So, they're going to face them head on.
"We have human nature and we're attracted to the things in the world, we can easily get away from the things of god when we gravitate to the things of the world," explains Rev. Larry Wade, President of the Texas State Missionary Baptist Convention.
First Missionary Baptist is hosting one of the state conventions this week, in addition to a welcome program Monday night.
"We're excited because this is the first time in a long time all three conventions will come together for a joint session," said Ricks.
With so many church leaders in one place, they're unified message is moral education.
"We're too commercial in the church, we've gotten away from marriage, we've gotten away from a lot of the standards we have in the church," explains Wade.
To overcome it all, Wade says it's time to get back to basics.
"Personal dedication - if we can get them to rededicate themselves to the work - make Christ their priority - not just a label... They can exemplify that in the community and the church and their families so we can strengthen our nation," said Wade.
With a focus of building strong foundations for churches across the state, taking a look at the bible will be a factor in that message. Convention leaders are bringing a renewed passion back to their home churches and communities.
"We believe and we know that through Christ, change will take place," said Ricks.
First Missionary Baptist Reverend Ricks says everyone is welcome to attend convention sessions that start tomorrow morning all will last through Thursday.