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SBC DIGEST: Mississippi, N.C. Baptists’ budget overages benefit partners

Mississippi Baptists give $813,635 beyond budget to support North American missions

By NAMB Staff

ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) – The Mississippi Baptist Convention Board (MBCB) recently informed the North American Mission Board (NAMB) that it would be sending more than $800,000 beyond its budgeted giving in support of North American missions.

The extra gift, part of which was transferred to NAMB in January and the rest to come soon, will total $813,635.

Shawn Parker, executive director-treasurer of the MBCB, said the gift reflects the heart of Baptists in his state.

“Mississippi Baptists are focused on the world, and we understand the world begins right here in North America,” Parker said. “As we prayed about how to utilize 2021 budget overages, one of our first thoughts was Annie Armstrong.”

All gifts designated to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering (AAEO) are spent directly on the mission field to support missionaries and provide resources for church planting and evangelism. None of the offering is spent on administrative support or staff positions at NAMB’s Alpharetta building.

NAMB president Kevin Ezell called the gift “an unexpected surprise” that will be a great encouragement to NAMB missionaries.

“I am so grateful for Shawn Parker and Mississippi Baptists,” Ezell said. “Shawn’s heart for the gospel reflects the hearts of all those who give through Mississippi Baptist churches, and this is going to make a huge impact on the mission field.”

Parker said Board members at his state convention were excited about the prospect of being able to put more funding toward the effort to reach North America. 

“When the recommendation was presented to our Board to give a special gift to the AAEO, they enthusiastically affirmed it,” Parker said. “This response is a reflection of the strong missions DNA in the Mississippi Baptist family. We’re glad to partner with NAMB for the purpose of carrying the Gospel forward!”

NAMB counts Annie funding from Oct. 1 through Sep. 30, the beginning and end of each fiscal year. Mississippi’s gift will be part of the current 2022 Annie Armstrong Easter Offering, which many churches will be promoting and receiving between now and Easter. This year’s offering goal is $70 million. In 2021, Southern Baptists gave a record $66.5 million to the offering, exceeding the previous record total by more than $5 million. The Annie Offering makes up more than half of NAMB’s annual budget.

“Everything we have belongs to God and He entrusts us with it to steward it well,” Ezell said. “Southern Baptists continue to demonstrate that they understand that truth and obediently embrace it. Not only that, but they also celebrate the opportunity to be part of what God is doing through their tithes and offerings. Our friends in Mississippi have given us an incredible example of joyful giving.”

N.C. Baptists surpass CP budget, offerings also up in 2021

By Chad Austin/BSCNC

CARY, N.C. (BP) – Cooperative Program (CP) giving from N.C. Baptist churches surpassed $28.5 million in 2021, eclipsing the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s (BSCNC) $27 million budget by more than $1.5 million as part of an overall increase in missions and ministry support last year.

Giving to national and state special offerings was also up significantly in 2021, which reflected a rebound in financial giving by N.C. Baptist churches to pre-pandemic levels.

Convention officials shared the preliminary financial report for 2021 with members of the state convention’s executive committee during a regularly scheduled meeting last month.

The executive committee meeting was originally scheduled to be held in conjunction with the year’s first meeting of the state convention’s board of directors, but it was moved online after board and convention officials postponed the full board meeting until Feb. 16 due to rising cases of COVID-19 across the state.

CP receipts from N.C. Baptist churches totaled $28,531,651.39 in 2021, which surpassed last year’s $27 million budget by more than $1.5 million or nearly 5.7 percent. The 2021 CP total also reflected an increase of about 4.8 percent from 2020’s total of $27.2 million, which was impacted by COVID-19.

The last time CP giving exceeded the state convention budget came in 2015. That year, N.C. Baptists surpassed the $29 million budget by a little more than $68,000.

Convention operations finished 2021 in the black by about $200,000 before its challenge budget allocation. An independent audit of the state convention’s 2021 financial statements will take place in February, in accordance with convention bylaws.

As part of a challenge budget adopted by messengers at the 2020 annual meeting, the $1.5 million in surplus 2021 funds were divided evenly between global ministry partners and state convention ministries, with each receiving approximately $750,000. As part of its budget surplus allocation, the state convention contributed $300,000 to the Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina’s new “Every Child” initiative.

In addition to higher Cooperative Program giving, the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American missions, the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for international missions and the North Carolina Missions Offering all experienced significant increases in financial support in 2021, as well.

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  • BP Staff