May 5, 2003

Baptists Today gives Judson-Rice Award to Dilday
___DALLAS--Russell Dilday, former president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, received the annual Judson-Rice Award for leadership and integrity from the independent news journal Baptists Today during a April 25 dinner that also commemorated the publication's 20th anniversary.
___Former Southern Baptist Convention President Jimmy Allen presented the award on behalf of the paper's board of directors. He said Dilday reflected the commitment and integrity of early Baptist leaders Adoniram and Ann Judson and Luther Rice, for whom the award is named.
___"Russell Dilday richly deserves the Judson-Rice Award for courageous and consistent leadership," Allen said.
___"The single event that causes this award for courageous leadership, however, was when he refused to yield his convictions as a free and faithful Baptist to the creedalists who had taken over the seminary board as well as the Southern Baptist Convention," he continued.
___Dilday, upon receiving the award, urged "Baptists today" to "never forget our spiritual birthright."
___"Tragically, there is an effort being made by some to re-write our history," he said. "They want to erase the true Baptist vision and reshape it. Some have called them pseudo-Baptists, rogues inside the family who never knew or have forgotten what our true identity is and are distorting it."
___Unless this effort is addressed, Dilday said, "the species called 'Baptistus Authenticus' is threatened with extinction and a new breed called 'Baptistus Counterfeitus' will be grafted in its place."
___He urged "Baptists today" to help shape "Baptists tomorrow" by preserving the authentic heritage of "Baptists yesterday."

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