Kentucky resolutions address timely issues
Brandon Porter and Kentucky Today Staff
OWENSBORO, Ky. (BP) – Kentucky Baptists held their 183rd Annual Meeting on Tuesday (Nov. 10) while following strict guidelines due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Around 400 messengers gathered at Bellevue Baptist Church in Owensboro to celebrate God’s faithfulness during an ever-changing year and express resolve to press on in reaching Kentucky and the world for Jesus Christ.
Attendance was around 40 percent of typical attendance, and messengers were required to pre-register.
Messengers approved a 2021-2022 total Cooperative Program (CP) budget of $22 million, a slight decrease from last year’s budget. The KBC allocates 50 percent of its CP receipts to the Southern Baptist Convention for international missions, disaster relief, seminaries and other vital ministries.
The other half stays in Kentucky to fuel efforts by the mission board staff like church consulting, missions mobilization, church planting, campus ministry and other evangelistic endeavors.
Officers for the upcoming year were elected by acclamation. Wes Fowler, pastor of First Baptist Church Mayfield, will serve as president; Josh Schmidt, pastor of First Baptist Grayson was elected first vice president; and David Scott, worship pastor at Ormsby Heights in Louisville, was elected second vice president.
Messengers also passed a slate of seven resolutions dealing with issues ranging from evangelism to abortion.
One resolution calls Kentucky Baptists to be faithful to the Great Commission found in Matthew 28:16-20 by working together “to reach the 1,728,681 households in Kentucky with the gospel of Jesus Christ by the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Kentucky Baptist Convention.” The Gospel to Every Home initiative has been set forward by Kentucky Baptist leaders to accomplish the task.
Messengers spent significant time speaking to a resolution aimed at acting and praying “to see an end to the scourge of legalized abortion in our state and nation.” While the resolution passed, multiple concerns were expressed.
Several other timely issues, such as racism, policing and a pastor’s right to administer biblical counsel, particularly in dealing with issues of sexual orientation and gender identity, were also addressed through resolutions.
The 2021 annual meeting is set for Tuesday, Nov. 9, at Severns Valley Baptist in Elizabethtown.
North Carolina adopts reduced budget, celebrates Hollifield
By BSC Staff
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (BP) – More than 500 attendees from Baptist churches across North Carolina gathered at First Baptist Church of Charlotte Tuesday (Nov. 10) for the 190th annual meeting of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSC). The theme of the meeting was “God’s Great Hope,” based upon Romans 15:13.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year’s meeting was abbreviated. The meeting had originally been scheduled for Nov. 9-10 in Greensboro.
Messengers approved a recommendation from the board of directors to adopt a $27 million Cooperative Program (CP) budget for 2021, representing an 11.5 percent, or $3.5 million, decrease from the 2020 CP budget. The approved budget also left the percentage of undesignated CP receipts that will be forwarded to the Southern Baptist Convention at 42 percent, marking the first time in 14 years that the SBC percentage was not increased.
Messengers approved a second recommendation that any undesignated CP receipts in excess of the approved 2021 CP budget be allocated 50 percent to the SBC and 50 percent to ministries of the state convention.
Messengers elected Michael Pardue, pastor of First Baptist Church of Icard in Connelly Springs, as convention president; Quintell Hill, lead pastor of Multiply Community Church in Monroe, as first vice president; and Jason Miller, pastor of Dutch Cove Missionary Baptist Church in Canton, as second vice president.
Messengers celebrated the ministry of BSC Executive Director-Treasurer Milton A. Hollifield Jr., who will retire on Feb. 28, 2021. The special recognition service included highlights of Hollifield’s life and ministry that included in-person and video testimonials from family, friends, colleagues and leaders from across North Carolina and Southern Baptist life.
In his final address to messengers, Hollifield encouraged messengers to strengthen their personal prayer life, integrate the Word of God in their daily lives, grow in their love of God, magnify the Gospel and make disciples and cooperate together to advance God’s kingdom. Hollifield has served the BSC for 27 years, including the last 14 as the convention’s 14th executive director-treasurer.