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Southern Baptist pastor barred

IMB Trustee member had blogged his criticism of SBC for recent policy changes.

Trustees of a Southern Baptist Convention agency voted to censure Oklahoma pastor Wade Burleson and banned him from active participation on the board for at least the next four trustee meetings, the Associated Baptist Press reports.

The ABP reports that the International Mission Board board said Burleson violated two recently adopted policies barring individual trustees from criticizing actions of the board or reporting on any private conversations between trustees about IMB business.

As previously reported in CT, the pastor has used his weblog to criticize two policy changes the IMB trustees approved in November. Burleson defended his right to dissent, and still plans to be at the meetings.

Burleson's blog cricism stemmed from the IMB's decision to bar new missionary candidates who practice a "private prayer language" or tongues from serving on the mission field. The trustees also mandated that a candidate be baptized in a church that teaches believers' security and practices only baptism by immersion.

Only messengers to an SBC annual meeting can fully eject Burleson from its membership. Two years ago, a majority of IMB trustees voted to ask messengers to eject Burleson but later rescinded the action.

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