The most prominent Southern Baptist Convention in the United States, the Southern Baptist Leadership Conference, has voted to dissolve its governing body, with a new governing body chosen in a private meeting on Tuesday.
The decision by the SBC, one of the largest and most influential Christian groups in the country, follows a decision in April by the National Association of Evangelicals to split from the Southern Baptists, the largest Protestant denomination.
That decision has not yet been formally announced.
The SBC’s decision to dissolve the governing body marks the latest in a series of splinterings from conservative Southern Baptist denominations that have swept the nation.
The organization’s president, Rev. William Barber, spoke to the SBNC’s executive committee at the meeting, in which a group of Southern Baptist pastors, theologians and other leaders voted to vote for a new president, according to a transcript of the meeting provided by the Southern Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
The SBC board will now meet at 1 p.m.
Wednesday, the board said in a statement.
Barber said in the statement that he had been in discussions with the leadership and was confident that a new President will be chosen.
The leaders of the SLC have long been divided over the future of the denomination, with many in the group blaming the loss of its longtime president, the Rev. Jerry Falwell, for the split.
The Southern Baptist Association is the largest denomination in the U.S., with about 6.7 million members.
It was founded in 1876.
While many Southern Baptistic leaders have said the SCLC needs to be more diverse and inclusive, Barber has also said the denomination should “rebrand” itself.