The many state conventions held their annual meetings, most last month, and Baptist Press reported on their actions. Following the Great Commission Resugence process and report, many of the states took action to increase their support of International Missions but I don't recall reading of any state convention that took the action the South Carolina Baptist Convention took.
S.C. Baptists to send more to int'l missions
The SCBC voted to "increase South Carolina Baptists' contribution to the International Mission Board by nearly 22 percent over the next three years and to move the SCBC toward a 50/50 split of Cooperative Program receipts with the Southern Baptist Convention over the next five years."
That in itself is significant because the SCBC voted to cut programs to free up money to decrease the proportion of Cooperative Program money kept in South Carolina. Many of the state conventions have voted to move toward a 50/50 split but with the caveat that it will happen only if churches increase CP giving to the state. It appears that the SCBC voted to move toward a 50/50 split without assiging the churches the blame if giving does not increase and therefore they cannot move to 50/50.
But back to the SCBC taking action that no other state has taken. What would that be?
The South Carolina Baptist Convention added a line item in their SCBC budget for the IMB. That is, they voted to send some of the SBC part of their CP monies directly to the International Mission Board, cutting out the Executive Committee, the six seminaries, the North American Mission Board, and the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
I don't recall this happening on the state convention level.
Churches do this every year through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions. Some churches even budget for IMB gifts that don't go through the Cooperative Program, thereby assuring that 100% of that money gets to the IMB rather than the 20% or so that would if they gave through the CP. State conventions haven't taken this route, until now, so far as I am aware.
Granted, the amount isn't a lot, about $400,000 or about 7% of what the IMB receives through the indirect (Executive Committee) channel. The SCBC is saying, "Sorry, Frank Page, you don't get to handle this money and cut it in half before you send it to the IMB."
If Southern Baptists want to get more money to the IMB and then to international missions then this is the route that will make that happen. I have little confidence that the sprawling SBC and state convention institutional structures will ever be significantly cut and savings applied to NAMB and IMB.
I spent 15 years as a pastor in SC and recall that the SCBC was moving towards a 50/50 split 25 years ago. They didn't move much. It looks like they are moving now. Good for them.
[If any readers are in SC I would appreciate your perspective and any corrections to what I have said here. It is possible that I am missing some material facts that are buried in the details of your GCR actions. Thanks.]