Thursday, November 15, 2012

Temporary setback in my 50/50 split predictions

Back in September I blogged and expressed skepticism (Skepticism, on this blog? Shocking, I tell you, shocking!) about the Florida Baptist Convention moving towards their stated goal of an eventual 50/50 split in Cooperative Program allocation. I said:

It looks like the FBC, with predictable regrets, may abandon the goal of a 50/50 split. It hasn't happened yet but the groundwork is being laid by convention leadership and the matter is being discussed. I suspect that a rollback from the 50/50 goal is as sure an outcome as is the rising of the sun over the Atlantic rather than the Gulf of Mexico.

Plodder dined on crow last evening; however, 50/50 is still years away so I will still stick with his prediction that the FBC will never get there.

At their annual meeting in the Sunshine State, the FBC did indeed continue on their route towards 50/50.

Baptist Press even headlined it: Fla. Baptists continue toward 50/50 CP split.

Messengers approved a 2013 Cooperative Program budget of $31.6 million, an amount identical to the 2012 budget. The budget, based on gifts from Florida Baptist churches through the Cooperative Program from June 1, 2011, to May 31, 2012, will increase giving to the Southern Baptist Convention by 1 percentage point to 41.5 percent.

The increase in the SBC portion sustains a commitment by Florida Baptists to raise the percentage allocated nationally to an even 50/50 percent division of funds between the SBC and state.

"We are on track to be 50/50 in the next seven years," John Sullivan, executive director-treasurer of the Florida Baptist Convention, told messengers.

I consider myself self-chastised over the matter...but we are still in the early innings.

The FBC is to be commended for continuing towards that goal.

There has been a major recalibration of state convention work the last few years, primarily as a result of dramatic drops in revenues. The response by many conventions is to react by incremental movement towards an equal division of Cooperative Program receipts with the SBC Executive Committee.

My thinking is that the changes are good, are positive, but that they will prove insufficient to motivate churches to increase the percentages they give from their offerings to the Cooperative Program.


Dave Miller said...

A "source" who knows all about this stuff leads me to believe that State Execs in the Old Line Southern states have made genuine moves to change the way things are done to benefit the Great Commission work of the SBC.

The execs have done some really good stuff recently.

William Thornton said...

I do not disagree, Dave, although my conjecture is that finishing the 50/50 drill will prove to be quite difficult.