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I confess to being disappointed about something during the the recent Cooperative Baptist Fellowship meeting in Memphis. During my almost nine years as editor of the Biblical Recorder, I enjoyed the camaraderie with other state paper editors, and looked forward to touching base with them at various meetings during the year.

Most of the editors attended the annual Southern Baptist Convention meeting, as one might expect. There was generally a smaller number at CBF’s annual General Assembly, but I could usually count on visiting with three or four other editors who recognized that many of their readers supported CBF — or at least wanted to be informed about it.

Times change.

At this year’s meeting in Memphis, Baptists Today had four staff members on hand. Associated Baptist Press was well represented, as was Ethics Daily. Even the SBC’s Baptist Press sent two reporters to uncover whatever angles could best be exploited to criticize the meeting.

All the state Baptist papers together, however, had a total representation of just two. The editor of the Baptist Standard of Texas was there, and the managing editor of Virginia’s Religious Herald.

That’s it, so far as I know.

Maybe others planned to attend, but were providentially hindered. Maybe others would personally have liked to attend, but were administratively hindered by directors who have decreed that there be no CBF coverage in their papers, or only the kind of critical articles they can get from Baptist Press. Maybe some stayed home because they have tight budgets and scarce travel funds this year.

Maybe next year’s meeting in Houston will see more state paper editors than Baptist Press reporters.

Maybe.

Maybe not.

Times change.

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