ALPHARETTA, Ga. — A North American Mission Board (NAMB) task
force commissioned by former NAMB president Geoff Hammond is being dissolved,
but members have been asked to be available for input and involvement as NAMB
leaders ask key questions about the effectiveness of the entities evangelism
and church planting efforts.
North Carolina Baptist State Convention Executive
Director-treasurer Milton A. Hollifield Jr. is a member of the task force.
Hammond announced the task force — originally called the
North American Great Commission Task Force — in May saying it would “study the
actions and activities that will impact this continent for Christ in more
effective ways.” When members of the task force met for the first working
meeting July 28, they decided to change the name in order to avoid being
confused with the Great Commission Resurgence Task Force which messengers to
the 2009 Southern Baptist Convention in Louisville voted to approve in June.
Under the new name — North American Missiological Task Force
— the 30-member group discussed areas it would study and how it would go about
reporting its progress publicly.
With Hammond’s August 11 resignation, the Missiological Task
Force is being dissolved, but NAMB’s current acting interim president, Richard
Harris, and LifeWay Research president Ed Stetzer, who served as a
co-facilitator as the task force, have asked members of the group to keep a
future webinar meeting date open on their calendar so the group can have input
into the direction of NAMB’s church planting and evangelism efforts.
“This is a critical time for NAMB,” Harris said. “It is
essential for us to look at our church planting and evangelism areas and ask,
‘What is our current involvement? What is working? What is not?’”
With that in mind, Stetzer, in his role as LifeWay Research
president, will work with NAMB staff to embark on a study of NAMB’s church
planting and evangelism efforts. “We will then share this information with NAMB’s
current and future leadership, as well as the GCR Task Force,” Harris said.
Stetzer said he thinks the research will play a helpful
“Facts are our friends. I’m glad to be working with NAMB to
look at where we are so we all can think more clearly about where we need to
Stetzer will meet with NAMB evangelism and church planting
staff Aug. 18 to begin identifying specific areas to be studied. “NAMB has done
good work in many areas, but it is always good to take a fresh look at what we
are doing and what can be done better.”
(EDITOR’S NOTE — Ebert is on the communications staff at