Thursday, June 17, 2010

David Montoya, Spiritual Samurai, moles and paranoia

Anyone (I'm referring to the six or seven folks who read my blog) mind an excursion away from SBC annual meeting news?

I've never met David Montoya who, through his blog, the oddly named Spiritual Samurai might be said to have hastened the decline of the grand Baptist General Convention of Texas because of his incessant blogging on what he saw was waste of perfectly good Texas mission dollars. Turned out that his tiny voice was effective when louder voices were silent on the matter.

That was then. What's up now?

Well, I don't quite follow all he is trying to say about the BGCT wasting more mission dollars, this time hunger funds, but he is getting attention.

He may be right. He may be wrong. He has usually been right and occasionally wrong but his reputation as an ornery, stubborn little Baptist bulldog does cause him to get fed some quantity of inside information. He now claims that the BGCT administration is checking phone logs in an attempt to sniff out a mole from among BGCT employees.


"Paranoia!" critics shout.

Maybe so, but my money would be on Montoya.

Rather than spending more mission dollars rooting around for moles, what would be wrong with giving Montoya or any other Texas Baptist whatever information they might want to have about how the BGCT spends their money?

It's a radical idea, I realize, but that would be one sure way to stop leaks.


Christa Brown said...

My money would be on Montoya, too. Besides... nothing - literally nothing - at the BGCT would surprise me. Thank God for ornery, stubborn bulldogs like David Montoya.

Anonymous said...

I'm all for more transparency. And suffice it to say, there is probably not a religious organization in the world that could not use an extra dose or two of transparency. At the same time, an organization can't allow its employees to be feeding Samurai with tidbits of info. There are obviously some conversations at work and some documents that are not meant for internet distribution.

What I've always found interesting about Montoya's analysis is this dichotomy of sorts that he has created: BGCT under Bill Pinson = Good; BGCT under anyone Post-Pinson = Bad.

That seems entirely simplistic. Generally, the good ole days were never as good as we like to think they were. All organizations have ups and downs and various issues they have to deal (or not deal) with.

Also, I really don't know where Samurai is going with all of this hunger stuff. As I said recently in my ABP article on Royal Lane, I'm very supportive of the Texas Hunger Initiative. The BGCT has a good thing going on with Randel Everett's son Jeremy Everett spearheading the hunger advocacy work here in Texas. With the help of the Mayor and other local business and community leaders, my wife is leading a Task Force in the Greater Waco area to meet the goals laid out by Everett's Hunger Initiative. I'm not impressed the BGCT on a few things (Royal Lane, lack of action to address clergy sex abuse, etc.) but I am impressed with their hunger work.


William Thornton said...

Montoya has made some mistakes but has hit some home runs. I don't know about the hunger fund either and I asked why he didn't just lay out what he sees as wrong with it.

I'd guess that if the BGCT doesn't want its employees to be feeding renegade bloggers information, they might be sure there is a climate of openness with Texas Baptists and good morale among their employees.

David Montoya said...

Sorry I am jumping in so late here. The Hunger offering has no real oversight or accountability. In the documents they (BGCT) sent me, the first entity I checked on was approved not by people within the association who could have provided oversight, but by a director of missions from another association who probably never met the person they were sending money. This "partner" had never been visited.

The World Hunger Offering is a very flawed program created to try to move the BGCT into the role of a denomination. The only reason it has not become like the church starting situation is that the money is limited and spread all over the world. still it is cooperative program money that is being wasted. It is a smoke and mirrors window dressing ran by a former Wade lackey whose ego is bigger than his little stature.

Buckner International and groups outside of Texas, not hungry people in Texas get a large part of the money. PR people are called "specialist" but have had little or no training.

One more note on this post. Yes, Randel Everett did take his son out of a small failing coffee shop ministry and see to it he got a large salary. Nepotism is alive and well in Texas.

I will try to promote your blog more William. And yes, I am paranoid. I also know that those who have been giving us (Samurai is now more than Montoya) information are praising the privacy of our new track phones.

It is still a mess in Texas.

David Montoya said...

Forgive me, but their is one more item brought by the Anonymous BDW.

Pre & Post Pinson would be to simplistic an answer. The bureaucrats who thrived under Wade came in under Pinson. The prequel to the South Texas situation by EB Brooks and Pete Castro was under Pinson.

However, if there was a problem and you brought it to Pinson's attention it was not covered up and you were not immediately attacked, it was dealt with. Also, under Pinson and Roger Hall, the convention built a financial surplus that Wade went through in about 6 years. There was accountability under Pinson.