DALLAS -- The Southern Baptist Convention will place in Dallas this year. The event will last two very long days starting Tuesday at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. Estimates are nearly 15,000 people are expected to be in attendance for the Convention.

"It's one of the largest gatherings of all Southern Baptist leadership," said Cheryl Summers. What happens over the course of these two days sets the tone for Southern Baptist churches all over the country.

There is no ignoring a moment mired in controversy. Pastor Paige Patterson, former President of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, removed himself as the keynote speaker. Patterson, for many years, played a large role in the convention. Patterson is facing allegations he mishandled reports of abuse at Southwestern Baptist Seminary.

"The Southern Baptist Convention is at a crossroads," said Pastor Wade Burleson who is a Southern Baptist Pastor. He expects the topic of women will come up this convention. And his hope is that the SBC makes a clear statement regarding the matter. "Jesus Christ honored women and treated them as equals to men. This is a crucial convention," the pastor said.

A rally called "For Such A Time As This," is scheduled for Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. in front of the convention center. Summers, who is a domestic abuse survivor and a long-time Southern Baptist, hopes the convention listens.

The rally has three main goals: gender equality, training for pastors to deal with domestic violence cases, create a sex offender registry for the church.

"You'll hear resolutions that are coming forward to affirm that we have got to affirm that everyone matters. God loves everybody," said Karen Yarnell, a long-time attendee of the convention.

There are more than 8,000 Southern Baptist congregations in Texas according to the 2010 census. There are also more than 3 million adherents state-wide according to that same census. Texas boasts the highest numbers in both categories.

"These are good men and women. Changes are being made. It may take us some time. Don't give up on us," said Burleson.