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Executive Committee agenda includes range of items

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–Miscellaneous items handled by the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee during its Sept. 22-23 meeting in Nashville, Tenn., ranged from missions financing to six-day creation.

In various actions, Executive Committee members:

— declined to recommend, as suggested by a motion from the 2003 SBC annual meeting, “a one-time special offering through the month of July … for funding the International Mission Board and specifically the missionaries waiting appointment, due to this year’s shortfall of money.”

The Executive Committee stated that “the Lottie Moon Christmas offering already exists for this purpose and churches are encouraged to give sacrificially” to it as well as through the Cooperative Program (CP) Missions channel for supporting SBC national and international missions and ministries.

— declined to take action on a motion referred from the 2003 annual meeting calling for the Resolutions Committee to provide its proposed resolutions to messengers at least one session prior to their consideration.

The Executive Committee said it recognizes that “notice of all Convention business is comparably short,” but that “publication in the SBC Bulletin, Part 3, provides adequate notice and opportunity for conscientious reflection prior to messengers votes.” The Executive Committee also stated that “adjusting procedures presently in use could diminish the Resolution Committee’s available deliberation time, which would not serve the best interest of the Southern Baptist Convention.”

— declined action on a motion from the 2003 annual meeting to designate one Sunday each year to “focus our awareness … on six-day creation and the worldwide flood.” The motion added, “Such a focus should be comparable to the Sanctity of Human Life Sunday….”

The Executive Committee responded that it “commends churches for celebrating appropriate days on the Christian calendar,” but the SBC Calendar of Activities is “intended to promote only particular emphases designed, directed, and resourced by Southern Baptist Convention entities.”

— responded to a motion from the 2003 annual meeting for SBC entities “to accept all financial gifts and contributions from all Baptist individuals, churches, associations, groups, organizations, and convention” by stating:

“… the Southern Baptist Convention reserves the right to individually assess each financial gift or contribution … to determine the appropriateness, relationship of the donor, and the impact of each gift to the Southern Baptist Convention.”

— approved a request from the North American Mission Board to form a subsidiary corporation that would operate four ministry centers in New Orleans. NAMB owns and operates the Brantley Center, Rachel Sims Mission, the Carver Center and Friendship House, which share the Gospel with and minister to the poor and disadvantaged in New Orleans. The nonprofit subsidiary to be known as New Orleans Baptist Ministries, Inc., will broaden local Southern Baptist involvement, support and coordination of the four vital ministries.

— declined action on a motion from the 2003 annual meeting that Cleveland be chosen as a host city for an SBC annual meeting because the Ohio city does not meet the SBC’s current site selection guidelines.

— responded to a motion from the 2003 annual meeting calling for “better consideration for the handicapped” and their seating area by stating that “the Executive Committee will continue to evaluate the location for handicapped seating with special consideration for entry, egress, and safety.”

Also during the meeting:

— A check for a $569,790 offering from participants at various LifeWay Christian Resources summer camps to be used in North American Mission Board outreach was presented by LifeWay President James T. Draper Jr. to the SBC. The offering was collected from this summer’s Centrifuge, M-Fuge, Crosspoint, Centri-Kid and Centri-Break camps.

— Jack Wilkerson was honored for 10 years of service as the Executive Committee’s vice president for business and finance.

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