North Carolina Baptist churches gave more than $29 million to missions through the Cooperative Program (CP) in 2015, which reflected an increase of nearly 1 percent over gifts received in 2014.
CP giving for 2015 totaled $29,068,605.85, which was .83 percent higher or approximately $239,000 more than was given in 2014. (See BR story here.)
Giving totals exceeded the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s (BSC) 2015 operating budget of $29 million by more than $68,000. That marked the first time since 2006 that the BSC met or exceeded its CP budget.
“We not only met the budget, we exceeded the budget, which makes it all the sweeter,” said BSC Executive Director-Treasurer Milton A. Hollifield Jr. in presenting the 2015 financial report during the convention’s Board of Directors meeting held Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 25-26 at Caraway Camp and Conference Center near Asheboro.
Brian Kinlaw, newly elected president of the Board of Directors
Because the BSC exceeded its 2015 operating budget, several ministries received additional funding based on the “challenge budget” adopted by the budget committee. Each year, the committee recommends an alternate budget to the board that specifies how funds will be allocated if the annual CP budget is exceeded.
Based on this year’s challenge budget, the $68,605.85 excess was distributed as such: one-third to the CP of the Southern Baptist Convention, one-third to the BSC church planting team and one-third divided between Fruitland Baptist Bible College, the Biblical Recorder and the Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina.
When CP totals are added to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering, Lottie Moon Christmas Offering and N.C. Missions Offering, North Carolina Baptists gave more than $50 million to missions causes in 2015.
“The generosity of North Carolina Baptists in 2015 is well noted and celebrated in their support of the Cooperative Program and the North Carolina Missions Offering,” Hollifield said.
During the meeting, the Executive Committee of the Board of the Directors (EC) unanimously approved the creation of a new reserve account totaling $500,000 that will be used to engage international missionaries returning from the field for strategic efforts to impact lostness through disciple-making. (See BR story here.)
The new account will be funded from current BSC undesignated reserve funds. It will be used to create contract positions for recently retired missionaries from the International Mission Board that are relocating to North Carolina.
In other business, the board approved a motion from the Business Services Special Committee to accept an “option to purchase” contract for the former Baptist campus ministry facility at Appalachian State University in Boone. The offer was made by the Baptist Campus Ministry of the High Country in the amount of $500,000. Proceeds from the sale would be placed into a special account for use in advancing collegiate partnerships ministry.
The board also elected new officers and at-large members to the EC.
Brian Kinlaw, lead pastor of South View Baptist Church in Hope Mills, was elected board president. Kinlaw served as the vice president of the board in 2015.
Marc Francis, lead pastor of Ridgecrest Baptist Church in Durham, was elected vice president.
Ginger Brown, executive assistant for administration and convention relations at BSC, was re-elected as the board secretary.
Board members also elected four at-large members to the executive committee. They are Ken Jones, pastor of Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church in Lincolnton; Michael Owens, pastor of Gate City Baptist Church in Jamestown; Debbie Smith of Dudley Shoals Baptist Church in Granite Falls; and David Spray, senior pastor of Pisgah Forest Baptist Church in Pisgah Forest.
BSC President Timmy Blair Sr., pastor of Piney Grove Chapel Baptist Church in Angier, also appointed six individuals to the convention’s Committee on Nominations. They are Charles Brust of Cedar Grove Baptist Church in Lumberton; Ken Hucks of Sardis Baptist Church in Indian Trail; David Jones of Baptist Home Baptist Church in North Wilkesboro; Jonas Perez of Faith Baptist Church in Faith; Joseph Phan of Vietnamese Baptist Church in Greensboro; and Beth Wooten of Beulaville Baptist Church in Beulaville. Blair also announced that Noah Crowe, senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Robbinsville, will serve as the committee chairman. All new committee members will serve a three-year term.
At the meeting, board members also met with their respective committees for the first time, and each committee elected a chairperson for 2016. Committee chairs not only oversee the work of their respective committees, but they also serve on the convention’s Executive Committee.
Committee chairs 2016 are Gordon Benton of First Baptist Church Weaverville (Christian Higher Education); Kelly Bullard of Temple Baptist Church in Fayetteville (Church Planting & Missions Partnerships); LeRoy Burke of Zion Hill Baptist Church in Lumberton (Business Services); David Duarte of Daystar en Español Church in Greensboro (Communications); Bob Garbett of New Hope Baptist Church in Beulaville (Christian Life & Public Affairs); John Mark Harrison of Apex Baptist Church (Evangelism & Discipleship); and Boyce Porter of Geneva Baptist Church in Camden (Christian Social Services).
The next Board of Directors meeting is scheduled for May 17-18 at Caraway.