Baptist missionary funding: from societies to centralization: baptists sprang from a well of separatism and independence. The absolute primacy of the local church was the heartbeat of the organism, energizing all other work.
This local autonomy served the churches well, allowing communities to develop congregations that met the needs of a wide variety of ethnic, economic, and educational situations.
Autonomy, however, proved to be a handicap when it came to missions endeavors. A single local church could never gather enough funds to support large numbers of missionaries. The cause of missions created the emotional impetus to draw Baptist churches out of their local isolation into a shared vision of evangelizing the world. To finance these efforts while still guarding the ideal of local autonomy, Baptist organizations initially instituted a system of voluntary giving, with each missions agency responsible for raising its own funds. This method proved successful but still limited the scale of missions efforts.
Baptist missions efforts expanded rapidly only after autonomous churches agreed to an uneasy truce with a centralized cen·tral·ize
v. cen·tral·ized, cen·tral·iz·ing, cen·tral·iz·es
1. To draw into or toward a center; consolidate.
2. organizational structure This article has no lead section.
To comply with Wikipedia's lead section guidelines, one should be written. . This development was most clearly evidenced in the Southern Baptist Noun 1. Southern Baptist - a member of the Southern Baptist Convention
Southern Baptist Convention - an association of Southern Baptists
Baptist - follower of Baptistic doctrines Convention's (SBC (1) (SBC Communications Inc., San Antonio, TX, www.sbc.com) A large, national telecommunications company that grew from a multitude of local and regional companies, including Southwestern Bell, Pacific Bell and Nevada Bell, into a single, unified brand by 2002. ) creation of the Cooperative Program The Cooperative Program is a unified funds collection program of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) designed to support SBC seminaries, mission agencies and denominational ministries. (CP). Southern Baptists were able to create this joint funding effort because the Woman's Missionary Union (WMU WMU Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, Michigan)
WMU Woman's Missionary Union (Southern Baptist Convention)
WMU Waste Management Unit
WMU World Maritime University (Malmö, Sweden) ), auxiliary to the SBC, had already developed a centralized national organization and could effectively organize church members on the local level to support the new CR
Early Missions Efforts
Baptists' early funding efforts began with the organization of the Baptist Missionary Society in England in 1792, which supported William Carey This article is about the Protestant missionary. For the courtier to King Henry VIII of England, see Sir William Carey.
William Carey (August 17, 1761 – June 9, 1834) was an English Protestant missionary and Baptist minister, known as the " . This society functioned on a voluntary basis. Any church or individual could donate money to the missions enterprise. But they could also choose to withhold with·hold
v. with·held , with·hold·ing, with·holds
1. To keep in check; restrain.
2. To refrain from giving, granting, or permitting. See Synonyms at keep.
3. the funds, leaving the society's budget in a state of uncertainty. (1)
The idea of local societies each supporting one or two missionaries changed with the dynamic story of Luther Rice and the Judsons. Their dramatic decision to reject their Congregationalist con·gre·ga·tion·al·ism
1. A type of church government in which each local congregation is self-governing.
2. Congregationalism roots and accept Baptist theology spurred Baptist churches in America to create the General Missionary Convention of the Baptist Denomination Noun 1. Baptist denomination - group of Baptist congregations
Baptist Church, Baptists - any of various evangelical Protestant churches that believe in the baptism of voluntary believers in the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. for Foreign Missions in 1814. This convention met every three years and came to be called the Triennial Convention The Triennial Baptist Convention, also simply known as the Triennial Convention, the first national Baptist denomination in the United States of America, was established in 1814 (Wikipedia). The Convention was the merger of the Philadelphia Baptist Association (org. . Delegates representing missions societies or churches that contributed at least one hundred dollars a year gathered at the convention meetings, leaving the organization independent of any one group of churches. The delegates elected a managing board to direct missions work between convention meetings. (2)
A New Convention
Protestant organizations continued to use the society method of missions funding throughout the nineteenth century, with the missions organization functioning separately from any one denomination Denomination
The stated value found on financial instruments.
This term applies to most financial instruments with monetary values. The denomination for bonds and securities would be face value or par value. . Not until the organization of a new Baptist convention in 1845 did a different organizational structure bring changes to the missions effort. That year the Southern Baptist Convention Noun 1. Southern Baptist Convention - an association of Southern Baptists
association - a formal organization of people or groups of people; "he joined the Modern Language Association"
Southern Baptist - a member of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) broke away from the Triennial Convention over the issue of slavery.
The SBC created foreign and home missions boards, both functioning under the direct auspices aus·pi·ces 1
Plural of auspex.
under the auspices of with the support and approval of [Latin auspicium augury from birds]
Noun of the convention, with less autonomy than earlier boards had held. Southern Baptists, however, did not take a further step and change the funding of these boards. They continued operating under the society method of funding, with each missions board responsible for raising its own financial support. (3)
The new convention's missions efforts were limited during its early organizational years. Tensions over the nation's growing sectional sec·tion·al
1. Of, relating to, or characteristic of a particular district.
2. Composed of or divided into component sections.
n. divide slowed missions efforts in the 1850s. The Civil War all but ended Southern Baptist missions work as it wreaked havoc on the southern economy. Throughout Reconstruction, church members focused their efforts on rebuilding their churches and their communities, giving little or no thought to missions efforts.
In the 1880s, Southern Baptist missionary agencies began to experience growth as the South regained its footing. Yet, lack of funding proved an obstacle. Local church missions societies, mostly all female, responded to the financial need through a variety of fund-raising efforts Noun 1. fund-raising effort - a campaign to raise money for some cause
fund-raising campaign, fund-raising drive
crusade, campaign, cause, drive, effort, movement - a series of actions advancing a principle or tending toward a particular end; "he supported , including church dinners, entertainment socials, and the sale of handmade hand·made
Made or prepared by hand rather than by machine.
made by hand, not by machine
Adj. 1. items and farm products, such as eggs and butter. Women proudly brought their hard-earned dollars to their societies with dreams of helping missionaries in far-off places.
During this period, the established method of sending funds to the missionary agencies was through local churches. SBC agency leaders were greatly disappointed when they realized church leaders were retaining funds for local needs rather than forwarding them to the national entities. Reacting to this situation in 1878, H. A. Tupper, executive director of the Foreign Mission Board (FMB FMB
Federal Maritime Board
FMB (US) n abbr (= Federal Maritime Board) → Dachausschuss der Handelsmarine ), urged Southern Baptist women to form a Central Committee for each state. Central Committees were to function as collection and distribution centers, gathering funds from local missions societies and channeling the monies directly to the missions boards. This method assured women that their funds would go to the board they had designated. (4) By functioning under the guidance of a state organization, local women's groups had taken the first step toward centralization cen·tral·ize
v. cen·tral·ized, cen·tral·iz·ing, cen·tral·iz·es
1. To draw into or toward a center; consolidate.
Woman's Missionary Union
Mission-minded Southern Baptist women had attempted to create a national organization to support missions since 1845. Yet, men in the convention resisted these efforts, fearing a separate women's group might create its own missions agency. But with the development of the Central Committees, and the staunch support from both missions board presidents, Southern Baptist women had the momentum they needed to organize. They voted to create Woman's Missionary Union in 1888, selecting Annie Armstrong as the first corresponding secretary (executive director).
The relationship between this national organization and the women's local societies differed from that of the SBC to the local church. Women's missions societies were more willing to accept direction from the national WMU than the autonomy-driven local churches were from the SBC. This openness allowed the WMU to set fund-raising goals for each state, which, in turn, set goals for each local area, known as an association, which set goals for each local society. This process established a direct line between the WMU and the local society, a centralized organization. It also significantly increased the amount of money the two missions boards received.
WMU groups gathered the largest amounts of money through two special offerings, the Lottie Moon Charlotte Digges "Lottie" Moon (December 12, 1840 – December 24 , 1912) was a Southern Baptist missionary to China with the Foreign Mission Board who spent nearly forty years (1873-1912) helping the Chinese. Christmas Offering for foreign missions and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for home missions. For these special offerings, local societies received materials from the WMU, including theme interpretations, studies, and offering envelopes.
A New Method Emerges
Even with the support of the WMU network, SBC missions agencies constantly found themselves lacking needed funds. Board representatives went directly to churches to plead plead v. 1) in civil lawsuits and petitions, the filing of any document (pleading) including complaints, petitions, declarations, motions, and memoranda of points and authorities. for donations. The convention attempted to rectify rec·ti·fy
1. To set right; correct.
2. To refine or purify, especially by distillation. this problem first through the Seventy-Five Million Campaign in 1919 and then through its successor, the Cooperative Program (CP), which began in 1925 and continues to the present. The CP was successful in allowing Southern Baptists to pool their financial resources and to fund adequately their boards and agencies. Scholars agreed that this marked the beginning of a modern denominational de·nom·i·na·tion
1. A large group of religious congregations united under a common faith and name and organized under a single administrative and legal hierarchy.
2. structure for the SBC.
SBC leaders initiated the Seventy-Five Million Campaign in 1919 in an attempt to raise $75 million "to give increased support for all missionary, educational, and benevolent be·nev·o·lent
1. Characterized by or suggestive of doing good.
2. Of, concerned with, or organized for the benefit of charity. work." This fund-raising effort marked the genesis of cooperative giving for convention-wide efforts. Local churches pledged $92 million during the campaign, and state conventions and SBC agencies created budgets based on the amount pledged. Unfortunately, at the end of the five-year campaign, Baptists had contributed only $58 million, leaving many Baptist entities deeply in debt. (5)
In 1925, SBC leaders, facing the daunting daunt
tr.v. daunt·ed, daunt·ing, daunts
To abate the courage of; discourage. See Synonyms at dismay.
[Middle English daunten, from Old French danter, from Latin task of financing ongoing work of convention agencies and institutions and retiring old debts, initiated the Cooperative Program, which program encouraged percentage-giving to state and national levels. Individual churches determined a set percentage of their budgets to send to the state conventions that, in turn, sent certain percentages to the national level where the SBC divided the funds among various entities, freeing those entities from the need to plead for funds.
The WMU leaders were involved with both the Seventy-Five Million Campaign and with the CP through the national committees overseeing these programs. In 1920, SBC named the WMU executive director, Kathleen Mallory Kathleen (Kathy) Mallory is a fictional New York City police detective featured in nine dark mystery novels by author Carol O'Connell. The novels in the series include Mallory's Oracle, The Man Who Cast Two Shadows, Killing Critics, Stone Angel, , to the Conservation Commission of the Seventy-Five Million Campaign. This commission was instructed to carry out the original plan for the campaign and to enlist en·list
v. en·list·ed, en·list·ing, en·lists
1. To engage (persons or a person) for service in the armed forces.
2. To engage the support or cooperation of.
v. churches in the program's support. (6)
The WMU's experience working with autonomous local groups to form a centralized, national structure proved invaluable to the maturing of the SBC. The WMU leaders knew that educating local groups was essential in assuring their voluntary support. Mallory made several proposals to help local pastors motivate church members. The WMU offered the use of their previously established Week of Prayer for Home Missions, which preceded the Easter offering, as a vehicle to communicate the convention's needs. The commission and the WMU sent out a joint appeal urging Baptist pastors to preach preach
v. preached, preach·ing, preach·es
1. To proclaim or put forth in a sermon: preached the gospel.
2. a sermon of self-denial in connection with the beginning of the campaign. (7) The commission also asked the WMU to develop a week specifically for the campaign, demonstrating the respect leaders held for that format. (8) SBC leaders also encouraged state and local Baptist officials to include the WMU in all organizations created to support the campaign. (9)
At the same time, Minnie Kennedy James, the WMU president, served on the campaign's executive committee, called the Headquarters Committee. James stressed the importance of missions study to the success of the WMU and urged pastors to begin missions study groups for men. James further recommended that pastors present a missionary program once a month at midweek prayer meetings, stating that churches conducting these meetings "led in spiritual power and in gifts to the Campaign." (10) The WMU recognized that no issue united Southern Baptists more firmly than the romantic, self-sacrificing, image of the missionary suffering in distant lands.
These committee actions pointed to the appreciation many had for the ongoing work of the WMU. In 1928, the CP committee agreed that its stewardship stewardship
the occupation of being a steward or custodian. Referring to animals it implies the caring sort of relationship based on an acceptance of the need to include the rights of animals in overall plans to maintain financial viability. campaign should use "the same themes and terminology" that the WMU had chosen previously for its emphasis. (11) SBC leaders publicly acknowledged the importance of the weeks of prayer for both home and foreign missions and the WMU use of these weeks in encouraging giving to the campaign and to the CP. (12)
The WMU won influence within SBC leadership because of its willingness to support the convention program. The women's extensive network from the national level to local missions society groups heightened their influence. The SBC made attempts throughout the early 1900s to build the kind of modern structure that the WMU had in place, but was unsuccessful. Autonomous churches and their independent pastors brooked little direction from the national entity, which they saw as dangerously centralizing cen·tral·ize
v. cen·tral·ized, cen·tral·iz·ing, cen·tral·iz·es
1. To draw into or toward a center; consolidate.
2. . The WMU had succeeded in building a national organization. SBC was able to use this organizational structure to infiltrate infiltrate /in·fil·trate/ (in-fil´trat)
1. to penetrate the interstices of a tissue or substance.
2. the material or solution so deposited.
1. churches with their efforts to build a modern denomination. The WMU's assistance was essential for making the Seventy-Five Million Campaign and the CP a success.
Fighting for Missions
The CP covered a wide range of agencies that received funding through the new structure: two missions boards, a seminary seminary
Educational institution, usually for training in theology. In the U.S. the term was formerly also used to refer to institutions of higher learning for women, often teachers' colleges. , an annuity board, and other ministry efforts. The WMU did not see all these efforts as equally important. Missions was the heartbeat (1) A periodic signal generated by hardware for activation and/or synchronization purposes. See MHz.
(2) A periodic signal generated by hardware or software to indicate that it is still running.
1. of the WMU. Women founded the organization to support missions work through education, prayer, and giving. Missions remained the underlying motivation as the WMU supported the efforts of the CP, giving little or no emphasis to other agencies and institutions that received funds through the CR In 1925, Ethlene Boone Cox, the WMU president, issued a challenge regarding involvement in the CP: "This is an unprecedented opportunity to prove our loyalty to the cause that called our organization into being. It is imminently the hour to give missions first place in our denominational and individual lives." (13) Missionary needs was the key factor stimulating the WMU contributions. In 1916, North Carolina North Carolina, state in the SE United States. It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean (E), South Carolina and Georgia (S), Tennessee (W), and Virginia (N). Facts and Figures
Area, 52,586 sq mi (136,198 sq km). Pop. State WMU leaders proudly "called attention to the fact that the increase in Foreign Missions [donations] for the state was made entirely by the women." (14)
During the early years of the CP, the FMB experienced extreme debt. No money was available to employ new missionaries. (15) The board debated recalling some missionaries and closing the work completely in some countries. (16) The FMB board of trustees board of trustees Politics The posse of thugs who oversee an institution's administration. See Board of directors. sent urgent funding appeals to state WMU annual meetings. (17)
The WMU responded to this need with the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering funds. The WMU Executive Committee (EC) voted to designate des·ig·nate
tr.v. des·ig·nat·ed, des·ig·nat·ing, des·ig·nates
1. To indicate or specify; point out.
2. To give a name or title to; characterize.
3. the offering to deploy a set number of foreign missionaries and to support them for seven years. (18) Later discussion established the number at twenty experienced missionaries who would be returned to the field and twenty new missionaries who would be sent for the first time. (19) The FMB agreed that the WMU would have some input in determining which missionaries would receive Christmas Offering funds. (20)
Although the WMU leaders always kept missions boards' needs foremost in their planning, such was not always the case with those responsible for developing the CP. Every year the SBC Executive Committee recommended to the SBC the percentages of CP funds that each entity would receive. In the early years of the program, the FMB received 50 percent. (21) The WMU urged the Executive Committee to retain permanently this percentage for FMB. (22) SBC leaders, however, did not accept this proposal.
State WMU organizations also actively sought to funnel more donations into missions. Churches directed their CP funds first to the state level. Each state Baptist convention determined the percentage of receipts they would send to the national Executive Committee. Funds that remained in the state would not be proportioned out to the missions boards. State WMU organizations urged their state Baptist leaders to send 50 percent of receipts to the CR State leaders often chose to ignore these pleas and keep higher percentages in their own area of influence. (23)
The WMU's mistrust of the convention's commitment to fully fund foreign missions was only one indication of the organization's growing discontent with the modernizing SBC. The WMU had supported the Seventy-Five Million Campaign through its rhetoric and its actions. As the CP became the SBC's plan of unified giving, the WMU rhetoric still supported the program; but the organization's actions pointed toward a different conclusion.
A Challenge to the WMU
Over the years, the Years, The
the seven decades of Eleanor Pargiter’s life. [Br. Lit.: Benét, 1109]
See : Time WMU established special offerings for causes other than foreign and home missions, such as a Bible Fund, supporting a home for missionary children, and community centers in inner cities. As the CP began, the WMU stated that special offerings should be kept separate from the program. The WMU leaders realized that the CP represented a potential threat to the centralized, auxiliary status of the women's organization. Giving control of its funds to the increasingly centralized convention would diminish the power the WMU had worked to harness for itself.
The distinction of whether the special offerings were actually a part of the CP was not clearly stated to local WMU members. The Texas WMU informed women of their yearly CP goal, stating that the State Mission Week of Prayer and the WMU special offerings were included in their CP goal. The Christmas Offering and the Easter Offering were "over and above gifts to the regular budget" but were included in the CP goal. (24) Local women heard and responded to the rhetoric, strongly supporting the new CE Leaders did not pass on information regarding the actual exclusion of these funds from the CR
National WMU leadership saw in the CP a threat to the organization's standing as an auxiliary to the SBC. As denominational bureaucratic bu·reau·crat
1. An official of a bureaucracy.
2. An official who is rigidly devoted to the details of administrative procedure.
bu power grew, the WMU strength in the local church weakened. For decades, the WMU had been one of the few national entities of significance reaching into the local church, guiding the actions of church members. Women who wanted to be involved in a national effort to support missions saw the WMU as the only reliable option. The CP offered another viable option. Through this channel, church members could send their tithe tithe
Contribution of a tenth of one's income for religious purposes. The practice of tithing was established in the Hebrew scriptures and was adopted by the Western Christian church. and be assured that a portion would reach the missions boards. With the CP, the denomination had a powerful tool to make its presence felt on the local level.
This weakening of local WMU groups became evident early in the Seventy-Five Million Campaign. Churches needed to gain more control over member's contributions in order to document their support of the campaign. The only way to exercise this control was to have all church funds channeled through the church treasurer.
Divided channeling of funds could not continue if churches were to participate in the CE In 1920, First Baptist Church First Baptist Church may refer to many churches: Canada
Resolved, that all funds of the church and the organizations, including the Woman's Missionary Union, the Sunday School and the Baptist Young People's Unions be paid over to the First Baptist Church of Pensacola, Incorporated, and by it held and expended for the maintenance and support of the church and its organizations and sundry other objects carried on or fostered by them. (25)
The Texas WMU leaders realized that many WMU groups were contributing their CP funds through their church treasurer and feared that the groups would not receive proper credit. They warned groups to develop a systematic way to receive accurate reports of women's giving from the church. (26)
The WMU leadership realized the growing strength of the SBC was changing the landscape of the local church. The organization was caught between desires to save its centralized structure and to maintain its auxiliary status. The WMU decided to keep its offerings and special gifts out of the CP to retain control over a significant amount of funds.
But the leadership also sought affirmation from SBC leaders for their decision, fearing a loss of auxiliary status. They urged the CP chairman to write a letter stating his approval that the offerings be seen as separate "over and above" items from the new unified budget. (27)
The constant emphasis placed on the concept of "over and above" giving, and the fact that the WMU rhetoric sounded a defensive note toward their offerings and special efforts, points to some sort of attack on their plans. Opposition to the WMU's continued control of funds must have existed within the convention. The fact that money equaled power in the denomination did not go unnoticed by SBC leaders, from local pastors to convention leaders. National WMU gained power in the convention when it convinced local church women to channel funds through the organization. With the CP, SBC challenged the WMU to allow its strength to be subsumed in the new denominational structure.
The WMU's defensive reaction to this new order was evident in the rhetoric of its leaders. In her report to the 1926 annum WMU meeting, Kathleen Mallory began by stating that the Christmas offering the previous year totaled almost half of what had been given by the rest of the denomination for a special Christmas clearing of FMB's debt. She argued that once this comparison was publicized pub·li·cize
tr.v. pub·li·cized, pub·li·ciz·ing, pub·li·ciz·es
To give publicity to.
Adj. 1. publicized - made known; especially made widely known
publicised "then surely no discreet thinker or ardent (Ardent Software, Inc., Westboro, MA) A database vendor formed in 1998 as the merger of VMARK Software, Unidata and O2 Technology. Its products included the UniVerse and UniData databases and DataStage data warehouse utility. friend of missions will again worry because the Union encourages its members to make alabaster alabaster, fine-grained, massive, translucent variety of gypsum, a hydrous calcium sulfate. It is pure white or streaked with reddish brown. Alabaster, like all other forms of gypsum, forms by the evaporation of bedded deposits that are precipitated mainly from , self-denial offerings." (28)
The WMU felt compelled to support the CP because of its status as an SBC auxiliary. But throughout the program's development, the organization's leaders insisted on its right to retain previously developed missions funding methods. Many SBC leaders were content with the WMU as long as it continued to support SBC missions work. Others expressed strong desires to bring the work of the WMU completely under SBC's control.
The conflict reached a crescendo cres·cen·do
n. pl. cres·cen·dos or cres·cen·di
1. Abbr. cr. Music
a. A gradual increase, especially in the volume or intensity of sound in a passage.
b. in 1929. That year, the SBC Executive Committee developed a new twist to the CR The plan stated that all funds that the state Baptist conventions collected should be sent to the Executive Committee, which would, in turn, distribute money to each agency according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. a set percentage. One point in the plan stated that any gift given to an agency from any source would be counted against its percentage, which meant that the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering would count toward the percentage allotted al·lot
tr.v. al·lot·ted, al·lot·ting, al·lots
1. To parcel out; distribute or apportion: allotting land to homesteaders; allot blame.
2. to the FMB, making the offering a de facto [Latin, In fact.] In fact, in deed, actually.
This phrase is used to characterize an officer, a government, a past action, or a state of affairs that must be accepted for all practical purposes, but is illegal or illegitimate. part of the CP. (29)
National WMU leaders reacted strongly against the proposal. Mallory sent a copy of the proposed financial plan to all state WMU leaders, urging them to study the document to be able to plan an action to "safe-guard the offerings ... as well as any other gifts which might be made with the longing to increase by such 'over and aboves' the maximum allotted to any object included in the SBC Co-operative Program." (30)
State WMU organizations also responded. In April, the Virginia WMU passed a resolution stating members' "deep concern" about the proposed plan. Their argument centered on the fact that such a policy would restrict individual freedom in giving and was contrary to the "voluntary principle underlying the life and history of our denomination." They formally protested against the plan, stating it went against "the inalienable Not subject to sale or transfer; inseparable.
That which is inalienable cannot be bought, sold, or transferred from one individual to another. The personal rights to life and liberty guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States are inalienable. right of the individual" and would hurt the work of the WMU. (31)
In May immediately prior to the WMU and SBC annual meetings, Austin Couch, executive secretary of the SBC Executive Committee, spoke to the WMU Executive Committee concerning the financial plan. He did not assuage as·suage
tr.v. as·suaged, as·suag·ing, as·suag·es
1. To make (something burdensome or painful) less intense or severe: assuage her grief. See Synonyms at relieve.
2. the women's fears. The committee passed a resolution stating their continued objection to the plan. The core of their complaint was that the plan controlled and restricted "the individual freedom in giving which has characterized the very life Of our denomination." They asked that "this time-honored and fundamental principle be in no wise disregarded by any centralization of authority." (32)
The wording of the WMU leadership became even stronger as the annual SBC meeting began. The WMU report to the convention that year stated that the organization was "radically opposed to any budget system which would preclude pre·clude
tr.v. pre·clud·ed, pre·clud·ing, pre·cludes
1. To make impossible, as by action taken in advance; prevent. See Synonyms at prevent.
2. or discourage the offerings" to the missions boards. (33) These words were not ones that fit the image of conservative women commonly held in most Baptist churches. The WMU leaders were using their financial power as a muted mut·ed
a. Muffled; indistinct: a muted voice.
b. Mute or subdued; softened: muted colors.
2. threat to convention leaders.
When the CP financial plan was finally approved, the WMU had proven its clout. The last section concluded:
Gifts designated for general purposes of an agency shall be chargeable to 'the definite sum' of an agency; specially designated gifts shall not be chargeable to 'the definite sum' allocated to such agency, unless such specific designation is to an object already named in the operating budget. The right and practice of the WMU in making special offerings for extra budget items is here by recognized and approved as in line with these policies. (34)
The WMU had won the right to continue holding its offerings separate from the CP.
Initially, the WMU supported the development of SBC into a modern denomination and its accompanying budgetary plan. But as the convention's centralized organizational structure developed, the WMU became aware of a threat to its independence because of the unified funding and the increasingly powerful SBC Executive Committee that controlled the distribution of funds. In response, the WMU withdrew its offerings from the CP budget.
By 1929, the Executive Committee had created a financial plan that would, in effect, put the offerings under the control of the convention. The WMU reacted vehemently against this proposal. The strength of the WMU in the SBC was proven when the financial plan was changed to allow the WMU to continue its traditional method of collecting and designating missions funds as women saw fit. But tension remained between the modern denomination and the women's organization that helped build it.
Much of the tension between the WMU and the SBC occurred on the leadership level. Local WMU groups took the CP to their bosoms and nurtured it to maturity. Most never knew the stand their leaders had taken against the convention leadership. Any liberal, independent leanings within the upper echelon remained quietly in the background, though such women must have been pleased with their victory.
Because Southern Baptists were able to use the national structure of the WMU to develop their own centralized organization and funding program, the convention became the largest missionary-sending Protestant entity in the world. By the 1950s and 1960s, SBC missionaries were on stronger financial footing than those from other, less centralized Baptist groups. But was anything lost in the bargain? While centralization was a boon Boon
A general term that refers to a benefit or improvement for investors. This can include such things as increased dividends, a stock market rally and stock buybacks.
Notes: for the missionary endeavor, did it move Southern Baptist congregations so far from their rich heritage of local autonomy that they cut themselves off from their independent, dissenter roots?
(1.) Bill Leonard This article is about the California State Assemblyman Bill Leonard. For the Kung Fu Elder Master Bill Leonard please go to: Shaolin-Do
William R. Leonard (born 1947) is a Republican U.S. , Baptist Ways (Valley Forge Valley Forge, on the Schuylkill River, SE Pa., NW of Philadelphia. There, during the American Revolution, the main camp of the Continental Army was established (Dec., 1777–June, 1778) under the command of Gen. George Washington. , PA: Judson Press, 2003), 103-07.
(2.) Robert Torbet, A History of Baptists, 3rd ed. (Valley Forge: Judson Press, 1963), 248-51.
(3.) Leonard, Baptist Ways, 189.
(4.) William R. Estep, Whole Gospel, Whole World: The Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, 1845-1995 (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1994), 119-21.
(5.) W. E. Grinderstaff, Our Cooperative Program (Nashville: Convention Press, 1965), 22-31.
(6.) Minutes, Conservation Commission of the Seventy-Five Million Campaign, May 15, 1920.
(7.) Ibid., January 24, 1923.
(8.) Ibid., June 3, 1924.
(9.) Minutes, Conservation Commission and the Southwide Conference on the Program of the Seventy-Five Million Campaign, June 28, 1922.
(10.) Minutes, Headquarters Committee, June 28, 1922.
(11.) "Corresponding Secretary's Report," Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, June 13, 1928.
(12.) Ibid., November 3, 1926.
(13.) "President's Report," Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, November 30, 1925.
(14.) Minutes, Central Committee, North Carolina WMU, May 8, 1916.
(15.) Minutes, Board of Trustees, International Mission Board, June 19, 1924.
(16.) Ibid., June 10, 1925.
(17.) Ibid., October 14, 1925.
(18.) Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, January 27, 1927.
(19.) Ibid., May 2, 1927.
(20.) Minutes, Board of Trustees, International Mission Board, June 14, 1927.
(21.) Minutes, Headquarters Committee and Special Committee on Allocation of Percentages for 1927, March 10, 1926.
(22.) Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, February 4, 1925, January 28, 1926.
(23.) Minutes, South Carolina South Carolina, state of the SE United States. It is bordered by North Carolina (N), the Atlantic Ocean (SE), and Georgia (SW). Facts and Figures
Area, 31,055 sq mi (80,432 sq km). Pop. (2000) 4,012,012, a 15. WMU Executive Committee, June and December 1925.
(24.) "Important Information," 1928 Record Book of Woman's Missionary Union of Texas , FBC See fully buzzword compliant. Dublin, Texas Dublin is a city in Erath County, Texas, United States. The population was 3,754 at the 2000 census.
The town is the home of the world's oldest Dr Pepper bottling plant (see Dublin Dr Pepper). .
(25.) Toni Moore Clevenger, On the Bay--On the Hill: The Story of the First Baptist Church of Pensacola, Florida, ed. Martha Pope Trotter trotter: see Standardbred horse. (Pensacola, FL: First Baptist Church, 1986), 153-54.
(26.) 1928 Record Book Woman's Missionary Union of Texas, FBC Dublin, Texas.
(27.) Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, January 26 and February 25, 1927.
(28.) "Corresponding Secretary's Report," Minutes, WMU Annual Meeting, 1926.
(29.) Minutes, Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention, March 5-6, 1929.
(30.) "Report WMU Corresponding Secretary," Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, April 3, 1929.
(31.) Minutes, WMU Executive Committee, May 6, 1929.
C. Delane Tew is associate professor of church history at Carson-Newman College Carson-Newman's students come from 44 U.S. states and 30 other countries. Studies are offered in approximately 90 different academic programs. Currently, the five most popular majors are: Nursing, Education, Business, Pre-Medicine/Biology, and Psychology. , Jefferson City, Tennessee Jefferson City is a city in Jefferson County, Tennessee, United States. It is part of the Morristown, Tennessee Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 7,760 at the 2000 census. The city was originally named Mossy Creek, but was changed in 1901 to honor Thomas Jefferson. .