Mississippi College

Senior Adults to Rally at Mississippi College Aug. 30

August 27, 2007

More than 800 Mississippi seniors from churches across the Magnolia State are converging on the Mississippi College campus for a rally Aug. 30.

They're coming to hear performances by the Visionaries Choir from First Baptist Church in Hattiesburg, see impersonator, preacher and author Dennis Swanberg of West Monroe, La. and find time for fun, fellowship and lunch.

A native Texan and Baylor University graduate, Swanberg is known as America's "Minister of Encouragement." His impersonations include TV's Barney Fife of Andy Griffith Show fame. His son, Dustin, is a Mississippi College student.

The event sponsored by the Mississippi Baptist Convention is targeting seniors, mainly from Baptist churches, from Olive Branch to the Delta to the Gulf Coast. But a number of Methodists, Presbyterians, and those from other denominations are coming, too.

The theme is "The Autumn Leaves: the Challenge of the Autumn Years."

It's the biggest gathering of Mississippi seniors in the state under one roof, said Glenn Shows, the event organizer with The Mississippi Baptist Convention office in Jackson. They're coming from 125 churches, big and small.

The day begins with 8:30 a.m. registration and the 9 a.m. rally at Swor Auditorium in Nelson Hall on the MC campus. Other highlights include fun time with Terry-based juggler and musician Rick Bewley, and a discussion with LifeWay consultant Tom Crocker of Memphis. Dennis Daniel of the Pastoral Care Ministries Office of First Baptist Church in Jackson will discuss the topic "developing a servant heart."

Tickets are $1 at the door. The cost of a buffet-style lunch with Dennis Swanberg will be $13.95 per person.

The first State Senior Adult rally in Mississippi was held in 1976. About 1,000 senior adults came to the last rally at First Baptist Church in Jackson two years ago. The event is held every other year Seniors, many of them retirees, will be arriving at MC by buses, vans and personal cars.

The definition of "senior" is 55 years-old and up. There's no such thing as too old to attend the Clinton event. Despite another sweltering Mississippi summer, some of the older participants coming will be in their 80s and 90s, Shows said. "It's an amazing turnout," he said. "It's really exciting."

To register for lunch, contact Dr. Eric Pratt at MC at 601-925-3235, the fax is 601-925-3909 or email epratt@mc.edu . The deadline to register is Aug. 23.

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