An official of the Southern Baptist Convention has confirmed reports that as many as 100 children under the age of 9 were registered as messengers (voting delegates) at the church's tumultuous convention last month in Dallas.
While convention rules set no age qualifications for messengers, SBC registration secretary, the Rev. Lee Porter, said he had a "gut feeling" that few of the underage messengers had actually been elected by a local congregation.
Porter opposed, as an intrusion into the authority of local congregations, a proposal setting the minimum age at 13. "The problem goes back to the integrity of the local church and the integrity of parents who may be registering their own child when that child was not elected by the church," he said.
Meanwhile, a so-called peace committee, named to try to reconcile the conflict between moderates and fundamentalists in the church, is slated to meet early next month under the chairmanship of the Rev. Charles Fuller, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Roanoke.
A top Jewish leader has offered a more positive appraisal of new Vatican guidelines on teaching Roman Catholics about Judaism, issued last month.
Henry Siegman, executive director of the American Jewish Congress, said the new material, which some Jewish leaders had initially branded as "regressive," should help advance Jewish-Christian dialogue by encouraging Catholics to deal with the question "with a new earnestness."
But like many other Jewish leaders, Siegman faulted the Vatican document for its assertion that Judaism and Christianity "cannot be seen as two parallel ways of salvation."
People in the News: The Rev. Dr. Walter V.L. Eversley of Brooklyn, N.Y., will be installed as pastor of the newly organized Moravian Church here on Sept. l. Born in Georgetown, Guyana, he has earned a Ph.D. from Harvard University and a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Columbia University Law School. The new Moravian congregation has been meeting in St. Mary's Episcopal Church in the District.
The Rev. Dr. Lovett H. Weems Jr., vice president of Wesley Theological Seminary, was elected president of Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City. He will take over his new post Aug. l.
The Rev. Dr. J. Oliver Hart is retiring as pastor of Galbraith A.M.E. Zion Church here after 50 years in the ministry.
The Rev. Thomas L. Palke, who has pastored churches in Illinois and California, will be installed Sunday at 4 p.m. as pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Alexandria.