Religion: The Strain in Plains

There were two worship services for the white Baptists of Plains, Ga., last week. One group met as usual at the Plains Baptist Church, made famous in Jimmy Carter's presidential race, while a group that has forsaken Plains Baptist gathered at a little-used Lutheran church five miles out of town. After Sunday-school classes on the lawn and in the woods, 30 dissidents heard Sumter County Agent Tim Lawson, their chief organizer, announce that the Rev. Fred Collins of nearby Camilla had agreed to be pastor of the fledgling Bottsford Baptist Mission. Collins, 34, left Plains Baptist in frustration three years ago.

There...

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