BELLEVUE, Neb. (BP) — Messengers to the annual meeting of the Kansas-Nebraska Convention of Southern Baptists (KNCSB) approved a 3 percent increase in the amount forwarded through the Cooperative Program for national and international missions and ministries.
The meeting, Oct. 10-11 at the Omaha-area LifeSpring Church in Bellevue, Neb., drew 214 messengers and 22 registered guests with a theme of “Better Together” based on Ecclesiastes 4:9-12.
“It is important for us to work together toward Kingdom causes,” Bob Mills, the convention’s executive director, said. Mills thanked messengers for supporting the Cooperative Program, adding, “It is our lifeblood.”
Messengers approved a 2017 budget of $4,444,056, which is a decrease of less than 1 percent. Anticipated Cooperative Program giving for 2017 is $2,730,000, and Kansas-Nebraska Southern Baptists will forward 27 percent of those gifts. The budget includes no shared ministry expenses.
Fifty percent of CP receipts above the budget will be forwarded through the Cooperative Program for Southern Baptist Convention missions and ministries.
Mills expressed a desire for the KNCSB to continue increasing the amount it sends for national and global work, but he cited challenges in the two-state convention. In Nebraska, 55 counties lack a Southern Baptist presence. Kansas has 33 such counties, though evangelical work exists in some of those areas.
“I want to challenge the churches in Kansas to think about planting something in Nebraska,” Mills said.
Joe Stiles, pastor of First Southern Baptist Church in Lawrence, Kan., was re-elected president of the convention; Derrick Lynch, pastor of Blue Valley Baptist Church in Overland Park, Kan., was re-elected vice president; Bryan Jones, pastor of Tyler Road Southern Baptist Church in Wichita, Kan., was re-elected recording secretary; Susan Pederson, a member of Prairie Hills Baptist Church in Augusta, Kan., was re-elected assistant recording secretary; and Tony Mattia, pastor of Trinity Baptist Church in Wamego, Kan., was re-elected historian, all by acclamation.
In other news:
— Messengers prayed for Haiti, prompted by Kesner Guillaume, pastor of Haitian American Baptist Church in Kansas City, Mo., a congregation that entered fellowship with the KNCSB last fall. Haiti was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew in early October.
— Mills told messengers the Baptist Digest, the convention’s newsjournal, will end its print publication with the December issue. The Digest will switch to an electronic format in 2017.
— Messengers adopted one resolution, a resolution of appreciation to the host church.
Next year’s annual meeting of the Kansas-Nebraska Convention of Southern Baptists will be Oct. 9-10 at the Webster Conference Center in Salina, Kan.