There are lots of Texas Baptist bloggers but I get heads-up stuff on the BGCT (which state would be right next door to me save for Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana) from David Montoya at Spiritual Samurai. Montoya might be the most effective squeaky voice in blogdom. His continual yipping about ValleyGate was eventually heard and consequences continue to be felt.
The BGCT’s downsizing is put in numerical perspective in this Baptist Standard story.
In 2006, the BGCT employed 406 staff, with 315 in full-time positions. After the latest cuts take effect, staff will number 268, with 213 full-time positions.
Over one hundred full-time staff positions cut in the last four years. Egad.
The upstart convention in Texas, Southern Baptists of Texas, is due some credit for the BGCT’s woes because the SBT provides an attractive choice for Texas churches. Surely some credit is due the BGCT itself for its propensity for self-inflicted wounds.
In the link above note Samurai’s mention of nepotism at the BGCT. To be fair, Montoya has not always been accurate, but if he is, such would be hard to justify in a time of downsizing.
I see no great revival of enthusiasm for denominational (Cooperative Program) giving and our current SBC president, Bryant Wright, has famously said that state conventions should make drastic, radical cuts in what they keep out of CP gifts. Unless something not anticipated occurrs, other state conventions may be following the BGCT in decline. Call this pessimism if you wish. I rather think it is realism.
If so, the most valuable people in the SBC might be those who have the skills to shepherd our entities in a time of radical reprioritization, er, decline. One cannot say that the BGCT has done this well, but it has done it.
Maybe lessons can be learned from it.