Royston says BSC at crucial point
January 31 2003 by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor

Royston says BSC at crucial point | Friday, Jan. 31, 2003

Friday, Jan. 31, 2003

Royston says BSC at crucial point

By Tony W. Cartledge BR Editor

In a candid address to the General Board on Jan. 28, executive director Jim Royston said the Baptist State Convention (BSC) is facing "a most challenging, difficult time."

"We are right now in that window of determining what the future of N.C. Baptists will be," Royston said, "whether we will be the kind of folks that reach out to each other and include each other, whether we reach out to win the lost and disciple believers."

Despite the difficult economy that left the BSC 4.2 percent short of reaching its budget in 2002, Royston said the convention still received $224,000 more than the previous year, and the N.C. Missions Offering came closer to reaching its goal than in any year in recent history. Through careful stewardship, the BSC managed to keep expenses below the amount of income received, he said.

Royston said "many exciting things are happening," pointing to an increase in baptisms, growth in distance learning opportunities, a new program to provide theological education for Hispanic pastors, new resources produced by the convention staff, and success stories from several new church starts. "We have requests for $345,000 more for new church starts in 2003 than we have budgeted," Royston said.

Royston stressed the importance of finding a way "to train the next generation of financial disciples."

"I believe people who are discipled well will give - they may not support institutions such as conventions and associations as before, but I do believe they will support kingdom ministries and enterprises," Royston said.

Royston championed the BSC's "Pursuing Vital Ministries" initiative. "We believe it will revitalize the way we do ministry. We may have to talk about it for a few years for it to catch on, but I believe it will happen." Royston stressed the importance of prayer if the convention is to have a bright future.

"I believe God will use us only if we come together and make the main thing the main thing," Royston said. "We don't get any stronger by eliminating others, we don't get any stronger by finding ways to exclude. We get stronger by finding how God is working in our neighbors, and coming together in prayer and fellowship."

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1/31/2003 12:00:00 AM by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor | with 0 comments
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