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Georgia minister to lead Baptists

June 10, 2008 at 11:35 PM

INDIANAPOLIS, June 10 (UPI) -- Delegates to the Southern Baptist Convention in Indianapolis Tuesday picked a Georgia minister, the Rev. Johnny Hunt, to lead the denomination, officials said.

Hunt, 55, senior pastor of First Baptist Church, a megachurch in Woodstock, Ga., received 3,100 votes to far out-pace the five other candidates. The next closest candidate, the Rev. Frank Cox of North Metro Baptist Church in Lawrenceville, Ga., near Atlanta, received fewer than half as many votes as Hunt, Christianity Today reported.

Hunt will succeed the Rev. Frank Page of Taylors, S.C., as the head of the 16.6 million-member church.

Hunt is a member of the Lumbee Indian tribe, which is based in North Carolina, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. Convention officials could not immediately confirm whether he is the denomination's first Native American president, the newspaper said.

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