Budget passes after effort to divert Recorder funds fails
November 15 2002 by Steve DeVane , BR Managing Editor

Budget passes after effort to divert Recorder funds fails | Friday, Nov 15, 2002

Friday, Nov 15, 2002

Budget passes after effort to divert Recorder funds fails

By Steve DeVane BR Managing Editor

WINSTON-SALEM -The Baptist State Convention (BSC) approved a 2003 budget of $37.55 million at its annual meeting Nov. 13.

A total of 3,732 messengers attended the meeting, along with 283 visitors. Attendance was down significantly from 2001, when 4,530 messengers registered.

The budget represents a 1.14 percent increase from the 2002 budget of $37.125 million. The budget includes no major changes in the way funds are raised or allocated.

The BSC budget has four giving plans.

Plans A and D are generally favored by conservatives. They each send 32 percent to the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), which has taken a decidedly conservative shift in the past 20 years.

Plans B and C are generally favored by moderates. Plan B sends 10 percent to the SBC. Plan C sends that same amount to the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, which was formed as missions and ministry alternative to the SBC.

BSC officials say giving to Plan A has decreased in recent years, but giving to the other three plans has increased, especially Plans C and D.

Messengers overwhelmingly defeated an amendment to the budget that would have moved money given through Plan D to the Biblical Recorder to the Conservative Record, a newsletter published by Conservative Carolina Baptists.

The Recorder gets less than 1 percent of the funds that come through Plan D, according to the BSC budget. Through the first 10 months of this year the paper would have received about $33,167 if no churches excluded the Recorder from their offerings.

Thomas McLean, pastor of Oak View Baptist Church in Rocky Mount, made the motion.

McLean said N.C. Baptists loyal to the Southern Baptist Convention have asked for many years that the Recorder provide "fair and balanced" coverage. In return, they have received "empty promises and self-administered surveys," he said.

"I'd like to remind the editorial staff of the Biblical Recorder that there is a difference between quantity and quality of coverage," he said.

Steve Hardy, editor of the Conservative Record and a messenger from Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, spoke against the motion.

"We at the Conservative Record and Conservative Carolina Baptists are not a N.C. Baptist agency and don't intend to become one," he said.

Hardy said that while he shared some of McLean's concerns, he has been in dialogue with Biblical Recorder Editor Tony W. Cartledge over the issue.

"In fairness to the convention, we're not a convention agency and I'd encourage messengers to vote against this," he said.

Joe Babb, messenger from First Baptist Church in Arden and a member of the Recorder's board of directors, took exception to McLean's comments and commended the Recorder staff for its fairness.

"Certainly, sometimes those who read what they don't like want to kill the messenger," he said. "I urge you to vote against this."

After the amendment failed, the vote on the budget passed with only a few votes against it.

Earlier, BSC messengers also approved a measure that will allow budget planners to work on a two-year cycle. The motion, which passed by a show of ballot vote with only a few votes in opposition, was recommended by a budget study committee and approved by the BSC General Board.

The vote was necessary because the move changes the BSC by-laws.

BSC officials believe the two-year budget cycle will result in better long-range planning and a more efficient use of time.

The changes also call for future budget committee members to be appointed for three-year terms on a rotating schedule, as opposed to the previous practice of appointing a new committee each year.

General Board report

The convention acted on a series of business matters, following recommendations of the General Board during its various reports.

Three fiduciary trustees were approved: Gerald Arnold of Raleigh, John Webb of Wilson and Wayne Stevenson of Raleigh.

Messengers approved an extension of the current mission partnership with Alaska Baptists, adding two years to the original partnership. It will now extend through 2004.

Richard Brunson, Baptist Men and Partnership director for the BSC, gave updates on the convention's current partnerships with Malaysia/Singapore, Honduras, Alaska, and Metro New York.

Other volunteers worked in Israel, China, Armenia, India and other countries. In North Carolina, many volunteers assisted with the medical/dental bus ministry and with continuing rebuilding efforts following Hurricane Floyd. Volunteers also responded to disaster relief needs in West Virginia, New York, Louisiana, Maryland and other locations, Brunson said.

The convention received a "Pentagon cross" made of broken concrete from the section of the Pentagon destroyed in the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001. Pentagon officials spoke on videotape to thank the 200 N.C. Baptist volunteers who worked there in the aftermath of the tragedy.

Messengers approved an amendment to the BSC constitution to remove the required 6:30-7:15 p.m. starting time for the convention's opening session. The convention will continue to begin on Monday following the second Sunday in November of each year.

Amendments to the bylaws were approved to give the Program, Place and Preacher Committee the right to plan some aspects of the program up to two years in advance.

Messengers also approved a plan for Chowan College to restructure a current loan by using some of its endowment funds as collateral.

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11/15/2002 12:00:00 AM by Steve DeVane , BR Managing Editor | with 0 comments
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