As you’ve no doubt heard, the Missouri Baptist Foundation is coming home to the MBC family of ministries. On Sept. 20, the Missouri Supreme Court clarified corporation law by upholding the Appeals Court ruling and the Foundation is returning to the Missouri Baptist Convention family, ending 14 years of litigation.
As I’m sure you are, I am so thankful to the Lord for the Supreme Court’s final decision. I invite you to join me in welcoming back the Foundation into the MBC family. We look forward to a smooth transition in the coming weeks as the trustees elected by Missouri Baptists are installed.
Already, we are in discussions with the current Foundation board and staff, praying together and taking steps to ensure the continuation of reliable service for all investors.
I also encourage you to consider the Missouri Baptist Foundation as a home for your church’s or organization’s investments, legacy giving programs, and estate planning. In these days of challenge, every Baptist family needs a will and an estate plan. I would also encourage every Baptist family to include a legacy gift to their local church or to other ministries that carry forward into future generations the message of the gospel.
The MBC has never been at odds with the Foundation over their investment strategies or service to their clients. Our issue was governance, and the courts have settled that matter.
Make an appointment with the MBF staff or ask one of their staff to make a presentation to your church or finance committee about planned giving and making a difference be-yond your own life. They want to serve MBC churches.
Concerning The Baptist Home and Missouri Baptist University – two other MBC entities that changed their charters in 2001 without MBC approval and established self-perpetuating boards – we hope they come home soon, too. After all, they both had similar language in their charters to that of the Foundation. We intend to ask the Circuit Court in Cole County to grant summary judgment to the MBC, effectively restoring governance of these entities to MBC-elected trustees.
Meanwhile, we ask that you pray for us as we work together for a God-honoring end to all litigation.
The Annual Meeting, October 24-26
I hope you are making plans to be with us in St. Charles for an amazing MBC Annual Meeting. President Neil Franks is presiding and he is preaching on Monday night. He always has a fresh, powerful word to share. The theme this year is “Never Alone” based on Deuteronomy 31:6 ESV: “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear of be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
Tom Bray, Pastor’s Conference president, invited some great preachers to share on Monday, Oct. 24. SBC President Steve Gaines; Herb Reavis, pastor, North Jacksonville (Fla.) Baptist Church; Larry Winn, senior pastor, Hebron (Ga.) Baptist Church; and Roger Alford, Missouri Baptist evangelist, are scheduled to preach.
We’ve invited Danny Dukes and his team back this year to lead in worship on Tuesday and Wednesday. On Tuesday afternoon and evening, the CORE Conference is about multiplying churches with J. D. Payne, Brookhills Baptist Church, Birmingham, Ala.; and Daniel Im, director of church multiplication at LifeWay. Tuesday evening the session concludes with a powerful message from K. Marshall Williams, pastor of the Nazarene Baptist Church, Philadelphia, on the power of prayer in reaching the lost.
Wednesday’s session starts with K. Marshall Williams and concludes with Steve Gaines. We are in for a special treat.
We do have some business to do. The Governing Documents Task Force plans to intro-duce to the messengers its proposed documents. The next issue of The Pathway is scheduled to have a complete copy, so that Missouri Baptists can read and learn about the task force’s recommendation. This year the messengers formally receive the documents and we vote on the report in 2017.
Of course, there are recommendations and resolutions. There are fellowships and networking. As is true each year, we elect new officers. The Annual Meeting also is punctu-ated by great preaching, teaching, and worship.
More details are in this issue of The Pathway. As planners, our hope is that the Annual Meeting gives everyone a sense of cooperatively accomplishing God’s purposes in this generation and the next. We are never alone in accomplishing the mission of transform-ing lives and communities with the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. See you there.