CBF-NC lives in tension, coordinator says
July 22 2002 by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor

CBF-NC lives in tension, coordinator says | Monday, July 22, 2002

Monday, July 22, 2002

CBF-NC lives in tension, coordinator says

By Tony W. Cartledge BR Editor

FORT WORTH - N.C. Baptist churches that are unwelcome in their associations should consider the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of North Carolina (CBF-NC) as an alternative, the head of CBF-NC said.

Members of CBF-NC live within a dynamic of balanced tension with the national Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) organization, its ministry partners, Mainstream Baptists and the Baptist State Convention (BSC), according to Bob Patterson, the CBF-NC coordinator. Patterson spoke to CBF-NC supporters who met June 27 during the national CBF meeting in Fort Worth, Texas.

Relationships within associations can be more problematic, Patterson said.

"After three years (as CBF-NC's coordinator), I want to say something I've not said before," Patterson said. "If you belong to an association in which you cannot start another church like you, or your fellowship is met with a cold shoulder ... consider finding another place of fellowship with CBF-NC. Why not?"

Patterson said CBF-NC and the national CBF organization need each other and live in balanced tension through a mutually independent relationship that "is not your father's convention."

"We need CBF national because they provide our identity, our missional identity, our fellowship identity in ways we can't do on our own," he said.

But CBF-NC also does things CBF can't do, such as having three staff persons in North Carolina working with the nearly 400 churches that support CBF-NC.

There is also a balanced tension between CBF-NC and CBF's ministry partners, Patterson said. CBF's ministry partners include 13 divinity schools, publisher Smyth & Helwys, the Baptist Center for Ethics, the Baptist Joint Committee, and a variety of other organizations.

Patterson said CBF-NC also lives in tension with Mainstream Baptists, a group he described as a "political partner."

"No, we are not the same," he said, while acknowledging that many CBF supporters are also involved in the Mainstream movement.

"It is not a bad thing to partner with others who have different roles," Patterson said. "They have a political role."

Finally, CBF-NC lives in balanced tension with the BSC, Patterson said.

"We have no desire to be a shadow convention or to be in competition," he said. "We partner with the BSC through Baptist Men, in church starts where we are able, and in other ways as often as we can."

In other matters, the group heard from missions coordinator Jim Fowler, welcomed new resource coordinator Rick Jordan, and had special prayer for five new missionaries with North Carolina ties.

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7/22/2002 12:00:00 AM by Tony W. Cartledge , BR Editor | with 0 comments
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