China Missions Project

September 21, 2007

The Word&Way has a good article about a new missions project of the Baptist General Convention of Missouri and some other Missouri Baptist ministries. Here are some highlights from the piece:

Leaders representing The Baptist Home, Baptist General Convention of Missouri and the Missouri Baptist Foundation traveled with retired missionary Harlan Spurgeon to China Aug. 22 - Sept. 6.

... The purpose of the trip, said Spurgeon, was "to see what the Chinese Christians were doing and to see how we could encourage and assist them."

... "The local work that we hope to assist at this time includes a new church building that will be dedicated this month," Spurgeon said. "They have run out of money and have not been able to install heating for the winter."

The church is located in the northern part of China and experiences severe winters.

The church is also hoping to complete the renovation of their former building into 10 rooms for elderly pastors who have no families to care for them.

The total for both projects is $15,000.

Spurgeon invites individuals, churches and Bible study groups to assist with the project through prayer and financial gifts.

Donations can be sent to the Baptist General Convention of Missouri, 1900 N. Providence, Suite 301, Columbia, MO 65202. Gifts should be marked for the China Project.
A few years ago, the BGCM raised $10,000 to help build a church in China. At the BGCM annual meeting in April, one of our Chinese brothers brought greetings to the messengers. Now we are hoping to once again assist and encourage our Chinese brothers and sisters in Christ. Of course, anyone--not just Missouri Baptists--can help with this project. Please at least join us in prayer as we seek to reach this ambitious goal.

6 comments

  1. So, just what IS your view on the theft of a few billion from Missouri Baptists?

    kmichael

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  2. Michael: Thanks for moving this discussion here instead of having it at SBC Outpost. Here are some thoughts on your question.

    1. You may call it "theft" but that is a legal charge that has yet to be resolved. However, if you have been following the case lately, the MBC's case is not looking too good. The MBC apparently is no longer claiming to have owned the five ministries but is only seeking its contractual claims. Thus, the judge is considering if the institutions broke a contract but the idea of theft does not seem to be part of the argument any longer. All that is to say that it seems improper to make certain judgment about the legality of the actions until the court process is complete.

    2. Your claim of a few billion is grossly exaggerated. Don Hinkle has put the number at just over $240 million. The real amount in question, then, is substantially less than a few billion. But I believe a large portion of that are assets invested in the Foundation and thus are not actually under the control of the trustees, regardless who they may be. Please be more careful to get your facts correct.

    3. I think you might to say "Missouri Baptist Convention." The five ministries are still run by Missouri Baptists, supported by Missouri Baptists, and serve Missouri Baptists. The life-changing work of these ministries is still going. God is clearly still touching people through these ministries.

    4. In your comment at SBC Outpost you mentioned this post (I still cannot believe that a post about Chinese missions sparked this discussion). In that comment you accused the BGCM of stealing the five ministries. Yet, the actions taken by the ministries occurred before the BGCM even existed. That’s like charging me with a crime that was committed in 1980 (which is before I was even born). Although the BGCM proudly supports the five ministries (and the other four Missouri Baptist institutions), we do not own or desire to own any of them. We give them money with no strings attached. I am proud that the BGCM sees as part of its missions work the need to help fund these great life-changing Missouri Baptist ministries.

    With that said, I would like to ask you about a comment you made recently on Wade Burleson's blog. You wrote:

    "But for her to file suit in a court of law begs another question that should be an even more important reason to let her go. Professors of SWBTS are required to have a personal relationship with Christ (a regenerated soul). I submit she ought to make this evident, for her deviant actions toward the explicit Word of God would suggest otherwise. She will lose this battle when the judge of humanity strikes His gavel."

    You seem to be saying that it was un-biblical and un-christian for Klouda to file a lawsuit against SWBTS. Do you feel the same way about the MBC?

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  3. Kaylor,

    Common man, it is theft, no matter how you skin your cat. Be intentional. You are incorrect about your assumption regarding the case, wait till February. Either way, your logic fails to deny that these trustees voted to remove their owners and founders (the people of the MBC) as rightful electors of the trustees. that is theft. (of a few billion) Those who invested into a MBC annuity board did so for the future of the convention, it people, and their own. Not for liberal slugs.

    The term "Missouri Baptists" will never be taken from the MBC.

    As for Don Hinkle, %%&^&^%&%#%#$!#$#@%#%^#%@#$@#%%#^#$%@#%$^%$@%#@%#^@$%@#%@%$^^&%&*&.

    On this I am sure we can agree :)

    I am a student at MBU. Save the theology dept, liberalism has crept into every nook and cranny. The trustees are overwhelmingly from Fee Fee and Kirkwood Baptist. that is all I shall say until I graduate.

    Dr. Klouda is suing on poor advise. But she is naming Patterson as a defendant. Nor did she attempt Christian arbitration first.

    The 5 entities broke away on poor advice. But you have one para-church organization suing its 5 children. SAD? YES! Unbiblical? NO. This is not brother against brother. This is legal code against legal code. All sides should have accepted Christian arbitration. It is a sad waist of money that could have been avoided if the trustees were honest men of God.

    I submit that they are no better than thieves--every last one of them. But I guess we al have our idols.



    Off topic.....where did you get the 3-column blogger code?


    kmichael

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  4. Thanks for your response. Since neither of us are lawyers or judges I am going to wait to defer to them for deciding if this was theft. You can disagree with the action, but beyond that the case remains in limbo.

    You again mention the "few billion" number. What is your source? I believe you are grossly exaggerating the amount in question.

    I am not trying to take the phrase "Missouri Baptists" from the MBC. They are still Missouri Baptists. But they are not the only ones. Even before the split in the state there were other Missouri Baptists (such as our African-American brothers and sisters in the National Baptist conventions). The phrase "Missouri Baptists" is not solely owned by the MBC, nor should it be.

    Glad you are not taking accepting all of Hinkle's writing, especially since he has put out a lot of misinformation about the lawsuit.

    I also agree with you that this has been a very sad waste of money. Millions that should have been spent on missions have instead been spent on lawyers. It has also hurt the Christian witness in our state.

    I am not privy to the details of the Klouda case but I do believe that she sought arbitration before going to court (at least I think Wade mentioned that at some point). But, more importantly, it seems that your main argument differentiating the two cases is that she is suing an individual. Is that correct? Are you saying that suing organizations is okay biblically but suing individuals is not?

    Glad you like the blog design; I really like it. I used Google to search for blogger code with three columns. There are a lot of free blog codes out there that one can copy and use. I don't remember where I got this one (actually, I changed it some), but if you look around you should find something you like.

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  5. "You again mention the "few billion" number. What is your source? I believe you are grossly exaggerating the amount in question."

    Does it matter? Theft is theft. Stealing a dollar or the combined assets of 5 entities is still stealing. I am curious as to how you cannot see that. Legal or not, it is still stealing.

    How can you justifiy what these boards did? Infact, why did they do it?

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  6. Actually, Michael, I do think it is important that you drastically overstated the amount in question. It shows that you do not quite have all the facts and are misrepresenting the situation.

    You are correct, however, that theft is theft regardless of the amount. I do not believe that is what occurred and do not think the court will find that either. If the court finds in favor of the five ministries then no matter how much you may dislike the action it cannot be considered theft or stealing.

    I was not a part of any of the boards that took the action (in fact, I was just a fairly clueless undergraduate student when it happened). However, my understanding is that the MBC nominating committee actually first broke faith by suddenly changing the way trustees were chosen. This was seen as a way to take over the ministries and so the actions were taken to protect the ministries. Problems at other ministries (in the state and elsewhere) and within the MBC since that time seem to offer at least some vindication to the idea that the cleansing of board members could have hurt the mission and work of the ministries. There were also some liability issues at play. The point is that even if you disagree with the action, the motives of those who took it were to ensure the stability and work of the ministries (which is what the job of trustees is)

    By the way, you did not answer my question in my last post about why you are against Klouda's lawsuit but not the MBC's. Is it because you believe that Scripture only condemns lawsuits against individuals but not organizations?

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