"New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old guard

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"New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old guard

Postby Sandy » Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:04 pm

https://sbcvoices.com/nobts-chapel-and- ... dr-kelley/

Not a totally unexpected or surprising reaction, considering the family relationship involved. You can change the names, run the clock back about 35 years, and get the same kind of reactions from those who were involved in the inner circle of SBC leadership back then. The carefully built structure of relationships, placement of trustees on boards and the "ministry career ladder" climbed by those who had relatives in important places, or who hitched up wagons to those who seemed to be going places was knocked down in one convention meeting in Houston. Seems like another Texas gathering, in Dallas, may have led to the knocking down of another carefully built structure. I wonder when we'll start hearing the word "takeover". Seems like the older SBC leadership has the same attitude of entitlement as the moderates did prior to 1979.

Dr. Kelley is entitled to voice his opinion as a leader of an SBC entity, but I think doing it in front of a captive audience in a chapel service sends the wrong message. It certainly didn't get much in the way of positive reviews.

By the way, there are now four SBC entities searching for new top administrative leadership, as Dr. Thom Rainer has announced his retirement from Lifeway Christian Resources.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby JE Pettibone » Sun Sep 02, 2018 11:42 am

Ed : Sandy, in what way are the attendees in a chapel service at New Orleans a "captive audience" ?
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Sandy » Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:54 am

JE Pettibone wrote:Ed : Sandy, in what way are the attendees in a chapel service at New Orleans a "captive audience" ?



They are required to be there.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Jon Estes » Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:06 am

Sandy wrote:https://sbcvoices.com/nobts-chapel-and-my-meeting-with-dr-kelley/

Not a totally unexpected or surprising reaction, considering the family relationship involved. You can change the names, run the clock back about 35 years, and get the same kind of reactions from those who were involved in the inner circle of SBC leadership back then. The carefully built structure of relationships, placement of trustees on boards and the "ministry career ladder" climbed by those who had relatives in important places, or who hitched up wagons to those who seemed to be going places was knocked down in one convention meeting in Houston. Seems like another Texas gathering, in Dallas, may have led to the knocking down of another carefully built structure. I wonder when we'll start hearing the word "takeover". Seems like the older SBC leadership has the same attitude of entitlement as the moderates did prior to 1979.

Dr. Kelley is entitled to voice his opinion as a leader of an SBC entity, but I think doing it in front of a captive audience in a chapel service sends the wrong message. It certainly didn't get much in the way of positive reviews.

By the way, there are now four SBC entities searching for new top administrative leadership, as Dr. Thom Rainer has announced his retirement from Lifeway Christian Resources.


In relation to votes for an SBC President, I don't think during the resurgence any conservative had such a large percentage of votes in their favor. I may be wrong but I do not remember it.

Glad to see you voice the fact of the moderate to liberal entitlement prior to 79.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Sandy » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:18 am

Jon Estes wrote:Glad to see you voice the fact of the moderate to liberal entitlement prior to 79.


I would call those who were in the driver's seat, and stacked the trustee boards with their family members and good friends prior to 1979 as "Moderates" in terms of their theological perspective. The "Liberals" in the SBC prior to '79 were a clearly identifiable group, most of them have gathered in the Alliance of Baptists these days, there were never more than a handful in comparison, maybe a hundred churches altogether, and none of them were ever included in the narrow circle of individuals who rotated around board seats and officer positions. Even now, as many of the churches where most of these individuals came from have clustered together to form CBF, they bear no marks of theological liberalism in the Christian tradition. The core group has succeeded in placing a woman in the executive leadership spot, though that is coming to a close, and there are a few more women in senior pastorates and church leadership than there might have been at the beginning, though not anywhere near the numbers you'd have expected from the rhetoric. Most women who want to pastor churches who come from CBF roots still have to make their way to the Methodists or Disciples of Christ to find the opportunities.

But there's no question of the entitlement prior to '79 by a close-knit, exclusive group. The SBC structure was formed by Southerners, and reflects the provincial backwardness of the culture. That's why it took over a decade for the conservative resurgence to gain majorities on the trustee boards.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby JE Pettibone » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:16 am

Ed: Sandy when you write "Most women who want to pastor churches who come from CBF roots still have to make their way to the Methodists or Disciples of Christ to find the opportunities." You seem to overlook women and men unwelcome by SBC churches who have been welcomed by the ABC.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Haruo » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:55 am

JE Pettibone wrote:Ed: Sandy when you write "Most women who want to pastor churches who come from CBF roots still have to make their way to the Methodists or Disciples of Christ to find the opportunities." You seem to overlook women and men unwelcome by SBC churches who have been welcomed by the ABC.

At least in some areas, though, the ABC churches look a bit askance, at least initially, at SBC crossover clergy. I have more than once heard them characterized as potentially "wolves in sheep's clothing". That sort of fear is probably less likely in UMC (or ELCA or UCC or...) because of the amount of retraining and doctrinal vetting/retraining the denomination would engage in (maybe less so in DOC?) before letting them have a pulpit, plus the fact that it's harder for a congregation to just up and leave those other denominations than it is in the ABC. Most of us after all own our own buildings.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Sandy » Wed Oct 03, 2018 1:39 pm

I think there are some who have probably gone with ABC, though what I hear from friends and from those with whom I went to seminary, there are more women in ABC seeking pastorates than there are churches available. A couple of friends of mine at seminary went with the DoC because at that time, they had a pastor shortage, and their ordination is recognized by a number of other denominations, opening up more opportunities.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Tim Bonney » Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:33 am

Haruo wrote:At least in some areas, though, the ABC churches look a bit askance, at least initially, at SBC crossover clergy. I have more than once heard them characterized as potentially "wolves in sheep's clothing". That sort of fear is probably less likely in UMC (or ELCA or UCC or...) because of the amount of retraining and doctrinal vetting/retraining the denomination would engage in (maybe less so in DOC?) before letting them have a pulpit, plus the fact that it's harder for a congregation to just up and leave those other denominations than it is in the ABC. Most of us after all own our own buildings.


I was pretty carefully questioned about my intentions when I moved from the SBC to the ABC. But even at that, I was given approval of call within just a few months after taking an ABC history and polity class.

In the UMC I had to serve a year full-time in a church before I could even apply to transfer my credentials to the UMC then, after a lot of work and approval including 3 seminary level classes on the UMC, I had to serve as a Provisional Member for at least two years before become a full member of the UMC.

So yes, the vetting and retraining is there and intended to keep out "wolves in sheep's clothing."

None of that is a critique of the ABC process. It is just a different process and polity.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Sandy » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:04 pm

I don't think there's really been an overwhelmingly large number of women coming out of SBC congregations to seek pastorates elsewhere. I encountered a few because I was at a seminary where there were some women studying who were interested in vocational ministry and were hopeful that an atmosphere would develop that would cause more SBC churches to be open to the idea of ordaining women and calling them as pastors. There were, perhaps, a dozen or so at Southwestern, which was the largest of the six at the time.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Tim Bonney » Fri Oct 05, 2018 6:26 pm

Sandy wrote:I don't think there's really been an overwhelmingly large number of women coming out of SBC congregations to seek pastorates elsewhere.


Really? I have known quite a few women who left the SBC for the ABC, UMC and the PCUSA. I could probably make a list close do a dozen of just people I know personally.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Sandy » Sat Oct 06, 2018 10:37 am

I'm not saying they haven't left, but proportionate to the number of church members, and in the context of the conversation of there being so many that it would be overwhelming to another denomination to absorb them, I don't think there have been that many. There might have been a spike in the number for that period of time around 1987-90, when the conservative resurgence solidified control of the seminary boards, and when most of the changes were occurring. There may have been an increase over the past decade, as SBC membership has entered a period of significant decline, but at this point, I wouldn't think that the number of women coming out of the SBC seeking pastorates in other denominations would "swamp the boat" so to speak.

I would guess that the biggest source of women looking for pastorates in other denominations would be coming more from CBF churches than the SBC. I know several who went that direction, thinking the opportunities would become abundant, but that never really materialized.
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Re: "New Direction" for the SBC doesn't sit well with old gu

Postby Tim Bonney » Sat Oct 06, 2018 4:04 pm

Sandy wrote:
I would guess that the biggest source of women looking for pastorates in other denominations would be coming more from CBF churches than the SBC. I know several who went that direction, thinking the opportunities would become abundant, but that never really materialized.


The UMC is short on clergy in many areas. We have a shortage of qualified clergy in the Iowa Conference. But I understand the PCUSA has the opposite problem. They have too many clergy seeking full-time positions and there aren't enough to go around. In the UMC our retirements are outpacing our ordinations.

I agree with you that the number of women seeking to move to another denomination wouldn't likely overwhelm any particular group. But when you have the UMC, ABC, ELCA, DOC, PCUSA, UCC, the TEC, and more all willingly taking in women clergy there would have to be huge numbers of them to overwhelm any one denomination.
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