Prestonwood on Moore

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Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Rvaughn » Sat Feb 18, 2017 11:50 am

Disgruntled SBC pastors/churches trying to bring pressure to bear on Russell Moore:

http://baptistmessage.com/26902-2/
Texas congregation escrows CP over concerns about direction of SBC

http://bpnews.net/48364/prestonwood-escrows-cp-funds-cites-erlc-actions
Prestonwood escrows CP funds, cites ERLC actions
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Sandy » Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:11 pm

The SBC's first action should be to suspend any member of Prestonwood that serves on a board or committee. And if they are escrowing their CP giving, then they should not be entitled to send any messengers to the annual meeting. I doubt that will happen, though. That a denomination is spoiling for a fight over the most secular, immoral, insane nutjob ever to serve in the White House is unfathomable.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Rvaughn » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:16 pm

Random thoughts

William or someone else will know more about this than I do. Here is what Article III.1.(3) says:
"Has made undesignated, financial contribution(s) through the Cooperative Program, and/or through the Convention’s Executive Committee for Convention causes, and/or to any Convention entity during the fiscal year preceding."
I would think they can still represent based on other giving, even if they escrow CP funds.This new decision probably won't affect the meeting in June this year. Another question I would have is how many other options did Prestonwood explore before announcing this extreme measure?

Jack Graham and probably most all pastors would complain and call it unethical if a wealthy church member withheld offerings to get what he wanted from his church.

On the other hand, the structure of the SBC grants influence/votes/power on a money basis [Article III.3(1)&(2)]. When you make money a basis of a seat at the table of power, seems to me this is one of the consequences (even if unintended) of that modus operandi. Putting influence in the amount of money given is a two-edged sword of which the other edge sometimes comes back to cut you. IOW, kind of the "cost of doing business" -- if you choose to do business that way. [Interestingly, most congregations don't give more votes to members who give more (though they may obtain greater power in other ways).]
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Haruo » Mon Feb 20, 2017 12:29 pm

I posted the Dallas News version here.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby William Thornton » Mon Feb 20, 2017 2:32 pm

Messengers are based on 2016 giving anyway, not the current year. Direct giving counts, so there's no issue with seating their people. A majority vote could, however, replace nominees for trustee boards. I think there is less to all this than the noises we're hearing on the blogs.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Rvaughn » Mon Feb 20, 2017 2:51 pm

Yes, that is really hard to discern. Blogs may stir it all out of proportion.

Sometimes a little dog makes the most noise. Where there is smoke there is fire -- but I have seen a number of "fires" that were mostly smoke and very little flame.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Sandy » Mon Feb 20, 2017 10:49 pm

I know the SBC made some changes regarding how it counts CP giving, in order to allow designated gifts to "count", at least with the SBC, if it is contributed directly. The most recent annual of the SBTC that I have shows the 2015 statistical table, and reports Prestonwood's undesignated CP giving at $75,000. The article says the amount could be up to $1 million, but if they're giving most of their SBC contribution through designated channels, it doesn't seem they'd need to escrow the whole amount just to punish the ERLC. If I'm not mistaken, William, can't a church designate everything it gives and still count the dollar amounts now? So why not just pluck out the amount that the ERLC gets, and take them off the list?

Prestonwood has done this before, with the BGCT. They were going to escrow their CP contributions to force a particular issue, don't remember exactly what it was, but as it turned out, their entire annual contribution to the BGCT wasn't even enough to get them the full compliment of messengers.

I would say, given the way the bylaws are now worded, that a church which decides to escrow its CP gifts because it is protesting the actions of one of the agencies, has established itself as no longer being in friendly cooperation with the denomination. There's a way to do this, following the rules, and this isn't it.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Rvaughn » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:02 pm

To me it seems like III.1.(3) in the Constitution -- which is part of the definition of friendly cooperation -- "protects" them as long as they are still gifting something "through the Convention’s Executive Committee for Convention causes" or something "to any Convention entity." Is there something in the bylaws that would clarify this?
(3) Has made undesignated, financial contribution(s) through the Cooperative Program, and/or through the Convention’s Executive Committee for Convention causes, and/or to any Convention entity during the fiscal year preceding.


At least the folks at SBCToday -- who are beating the drums against Moore -- have convinced themselves this is a movement.
If Prestonwood is withholding CP, then you can bet that other megachurches will follow suit. They probably won’t make an announcement like Prestonwood, but, believe me, it’s happening. Dr. Graham has too much influence to be a Lone Ranger in this action. -- Les Puryear

http://sbctoday.wpengine.com/texas-congregation-escrows-cp-over-concerns-about-direction-of-sbc/
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Sandy » Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:07 pm

Sorry, but I can't resist making this tongue in cheek remark. Megachurches escrowing undesignated CP giving isn't much of a threat. :wink:
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Dave Roberts » Wed Feb 22, 2017 1:39 pm

Don't I remember a quote, "If they say pickles have souls, they will teach that pickles have souls." Is this the fruit? That which is prophetic dies on the financial altar.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Sandy » Wed Feb 22, 2017 4:41 pm

Jack Graham, Pastor of Prestonwood Baptist Church wrote:“This is a difficult decision for me, personally,” he added. “I love Southern Baptists, and still want to be a cooperating partner as we have been for many years. We’re just concerned about the direction of the Southern Baptist Convention, and feel the need to make some changes in the way we give.”


Translation, "...and still want to be a cooperating partner as we have been for many years, as long as we can dictate the terms of cooperation. We're a big, important church, and we don't want to follow the rules that everyone else has to follow to get something done. So even though our CP giving isn't even half a tithe compared to the cash we rake in during the year, we are going to use it as a weapon to bypass what we gave our word that we would follow as a cooperating church in the SBC. We want one man's job because he didn't support our presidential candidate, and if there's collateral damage in that the SBC has to cut missionaries or seminary professors for us to get it, well, we don't really love Southern Baptists enough to care about that."

I think it speaks to the character of the church and its leadership. This is a church that got into a squabble with a neighborhood association over building a parking garage in a largely residential neighborhood, along with traffic concerns, and more or less bulldozed their way over the neighbors to get what they wanted. It's also the church that tried to quietly send one of its staff members out to pasture to avoid a big scene over his pedophilia.

http://thewartburgwatch.com/2012/10/25/ ... -betrayal/

If I were still in an SBC church, and went as a messenger to Phoenix, I'd be at the microphone when the motion to seat messengers was made. I'd move against seating any messenger from any church that escrowed CP funds, on the grounds that such a move demonstrates that the church is not in friendly cooperation with the denomination. I'd also be inclined to move to remove any member of those churches from trustee boards and committees, refund what they gave during the past year prior to escrowing their funds, and tell them there's the door, don't let it bang your fanny on the way out.
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Rvaughn » Mon Feb 27, 2017 10:15 am

Amid continuing discussion of churches' escrowing or withholding Cooperative Program funds, the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee launched two efforts to study the issue at its Feb. 20-21 meeting in Nashville.

http://bpnews.net/48387/ec-wrapup-cp-escrowing-by-churches-draws-study
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Re: Prestonwood on Moore

Postby Sandy » Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:05 pm

http://bpnews.net/48364/prestonwood-esc ... lc-actions

David Roach in Baptist Press wrote:At issue, Graham said in the interview, was alleged "disrespectfulness" by ERLC President Russell Moore toward evangelical supporters of Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign. Moore, who publicly opposed Trump during the primary and general election cycles, said in a December blog post he never intended to criticize all evangelicals who supported Trump. Graham is a member of Trump's Evangelical Executive Advisory Board.


The last sentence there is key. Prestonwood's pastor values his self-perceived influence with Trump more than his church's cooperation with others for missions and ministry.

As any church that cooperates with the SBC, Prestonwood has just as much ability to make their position known and their voice heard through the means provided, which is primarily electing and sending their full compliment of messengers to the convention's annual meeting. Stopping and escrowing CP giving is unethical, and an indication that the church is unwilling to accept its position as an equal among the others. It's hard to tell whether the language about reconciliation in the executive committee means simply caving in and doing what they want, or whether they are interested in a real solution to the problem.

David Roach in Baptist Press wrote:Some Southern Baptists also have criticized the ERLC for joining a friend of the court brief last May in support of a New Jersey Islamic society's right to build a mosque.


David Roach in Baptist Press wrote:Tennessee pastor Dean Haun resigned as an IMB trustee in November because he said joining the brief did not comport with IMB's mission and could be viewed as an improper alliance with followers of a religion that denies the Gospel.


Now there's an interesting position, "...an improper alliance with followers of a religion that denies the Gospel." We can't have SBC agencies joining an Amicus brief supporting the religious liberty of a group of American citizens because of that, but we can have the pastor of a large SBC church that doesn't want to play by the rules be on an advisory board for a president whose views and lifestle denies the gospel. And we can support a Presidential candidate like Mitt Romney, who belongs to a religion that denies the gospel.
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