187th Annual Meeting 2022
May 14th 8am-2pm
Irving Park Baptist Church
4401 Irving Park Rd, 60641
Welcome to the 187th Annual Meeting of the American Baptist Churches of Metro Chicago! We gather in a hybrid space to offer "Hope, Empowerment, & Solidarity" to one another through our work and worship. What a blessing to spend the day together, in-person and online, celebrating what God is doing!
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
Please wear masks if attending in person.
8:00AM Registration, Coffee, & Fellowship
9:00AM Devotional led by Rev. David Gregg, PhD
Music by Christine Inserra
9:30AM Family Council Business Meeting
11:30AM Award Ceremony and Keynote by Rev. Dr. Alan Ragland
Music by Christine Inserra
1:00PM Boxed Lunches and Fellowship for IRL Attendees
(Lunches may be taken to-go for those more
comfortable remaining masked.)
Our Guest Speaker
In November of 2018, the Rev. Dr. Alan Vincent Ragland, became the second pastor in the history of Third Baptist Church of Chicago, founded by Rev. Elmer L. Fowler. Dr. Ragland is recognized as a local, national and international theologian, scholar and preacher.
He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Memphis, received his Master of Divinity degree from Colgate Rochester Divinity School, and earned his Doctor of Ministry degree from McCormick Theological Seminary. He served as pastor of New Fellowship Baptist Church in Memphis, TN, prior to coming to Third Baptist Church of Chicago.
Dr. Ragland is an ordained clergyman of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc. and the American Baptist Churches, USA. He served as the first full-time African-American faculty member at Memphis Theological Seminary and as a theological educator at McCormick Theological Seminary and University of Chicago Divinity School. During his term as chairperson of the Mission Partnership Committee of American Baptist Churches of Metro Chicago, he spearheaded a partnership with the Ghana Baptist Convention in West Africa, to which he traveled several times and led a group of TBCoC members on a mission trip in 2009. Also, Pastor Ragland has served as a board member of several theological institutions, including McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, IL; Hood Theological Seminary in Salisbury, NC; and Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, NY. Locally, Dr. Ragland was a founding member of United Power for Action and Justice.
Dr. Ragland has worked extensively for lay and ministerial development. The first female ministers and deacons at TBCoC were ordained under his leadership. Currently, female deacons and clergy are active across all aspects of service. Dr. Ragland possesses a true calling for developing and supporting clergy growth. During his tenure, more than 25 persons have responded to the call to ministry and have participated in the TBCoC Ministers-in-Training Program, which he developed. He is father-in-ministry to men and women in various clergy roles in Chicago and nationally. He is a contributing author of Living in Hell: The Dilemma of African-American Survival, and he wrote the meditation for Psalm 95 in the African-American Devotional Bible.
Dr. Ragland left Third Baptist having expanded its missional footprint substantially. The congregation operates more than three dozen ministries, including a weekly Food Pantry; a comprehensive Faith-Based Care Network of health and wellness, grief share, and Stephen Ministers; a broad-based youth development program; an extensive Christian Education Program; a seniors ministry; a jail ministry; a variety of physical fitness options; college scholarships and grants for more than 20 consecutive years; and a number of community partnership services, like the One Church One School initiative with Vanderpoel Elementary and the implementation of interfaith worship services with the B'nai Jehoshua Beth Elohim Jewish congregation. Dr. Ragland and the Joint Boards of Third Baptist Church developed Heritage Community Development Corporation (HCDC) and Quantum Faith, a non-profit property development entity, as additional corporate extensions of the congregation’s ministry. Dr. Ragland spearheaded the ALIVE! Program, along with Rush University Medical Center, within five congregations in Chicago. ALIVE! is a faith-based initiative on healthy lifestyles aimed at reducing the health disparities in African-American communities. A true visionary, Dr. Ragland led TBCoC in construction of the TBCoC Life Center, a four-story building built to the specifications of a K-12 school, including classrooms, a gymnasium, a chapel, and offices.
Pastor Ragland, also, is an inaugural member of the men’s branch of the Praise Dance Ministry of Third Baptist and has danced faithfully for 10 years. He has also used his voice to sing God’s praises as a member of the church’s Male Chorus and soloist for the Combined Choirs.
In November of 2018, Dr. Ragland retired as Senior Pastor of Third Baptist Church of Chicago, after twenty-six years of faithful service.
Dr. Alan Ragland works as the Vice President of The Lydia Group Institute, adding a wealth of knowledge and expertise to that organization. He also serves as Chair of the Professional Standards Committee for the Ministers’ Council of American Baptist Churches Metro Chicago’s (ABCMC), and he is a member of the ABCMC Cabinet as well.
Alan V. Ragland is married to Barbara Ollie Ragland, PhD. They are the proud parents of one daughter, Melanie Loren Ragland, who is a graduate of Duke University and the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Journalism. Melanie is a professional actor. Dr. Ragland shared that one of the things that he is enjoying in post-pastoral life is attending all of his daughter’s performances - - - wherever they may be.