NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–October contributions of $16,861,354.15 through the Southern Baptist Convention’s Cooperative Program were 5.25 percent below CP gifts received in October 2008, according to a news release from SBC Executive Committee President and Chief Executive Officer Morris H. Chapman.
As of Oct. 31, Cooperative Program gifts were $933,899.11 below the $17,795,253.26 received in October 2008. Meanwhile, designated giving of $4,522,672.09 during October was 15.78 percent, or $616,391.20, above gifts of $3,906,280.89 received last October.
For the SBC Cooperative Program Allocation Budget, the October total of $16,861,354.15 is 99 percent of the $17,032,132.72 budgeted to support Southern Baptist ministries globally and across North America.
During the last fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2008 – Sept. 30, 2009), Cooperative Program receipts for the year declined 2.23 percent and combined CP and designated giving for the year declined 3.65 percent.
At the time, Chapman noted that SBC entities “have much to be thankful for because of the faithfulness of Southern Baptists during the economic downturn our country is experiencing. While the federal government has seen tax collections drop about 20 percent, voluntary giving by our people has sustained the national programs supported by the Cooperative Program within 3 percent of budget. Even though investment income has plummeted and special offerings have fallen substantially short, SBC entities have been able to depend on the strength and stability of Cooperative Program support.”
The Cooperative Program is Southern Baptists’ method of supporting missions and ministry efforts of state and regional conventions and the Southern Baptist Convention.
The Cooperative Program total includes receipts from individuals, churches, state conventions and fellowships for distribution according to the 2009-10 Cooperative Program Allocation Budget.
Designated contributions include the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions, the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions, Southern Baptist World Hunger Fund and other special gifts.
State and regional conventions retain a portion of church contributions to the Southern Baptist Convention Cooperative Program to support work in their respective areas and forward a percentage to Southern Baptist national and international causes. The percentage of distribution is at the discretion of each state or regional convention.
Compiled by Baptist Press editor Art Toalston.