Executive Director Search Committee set
JEFFERSON CITY – They are a team, yet they come from Missouri hamlets, large cities, rural churches and mega-churches. They are pastors, homemakers and even an engineering geologist. Yet with all their diversity, they have been given one solemn task: Find God’s man to serve as the next executive director of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC).
The MBC Executive Board tabbed 11 Missouri Baptists at its July 10 meeting at the Baptist Building here, one each from all eight regions of the Convention, to find a successor to David Clippard who was dismissed by the Executive Board April 10.
“Our committee feels that this is a very well-rounded, broad perspective for a committee of Missouri Baptists,” said Jay Scribner, chairman of the Executive Board’s administrative committee, which had the responsibility of forming the search committee. “We feel like it reaches across the state in a variety of ways to embrace the Missouri Baptist Convention. It is a good cross-section.”
James Freeman, a 43-year-old attorney who serves as a deacon at Oakwood Baptist Church in Kansas City, was named chairman of the committee. Freeman also serves on the MBC Executive Board and is part of the MBC legal team attempting to win back the five MBC agencies whose trustee boards voted to break away from the Convention and establish self-perpetuating boards.
“I believe that the diversified interests of Southern Baptists throughout the state will be well-represented on this committee,” adding that the committee would be in no rush, had no deadline and would begin by spending the coming months organizing and praying.
John Marshall, senior pastor, Second Baptist Church, Springfield, was named vice chairman. In addition to the 11 voting members, MBC President Mike Green of Republic was named an ex-officio member with non-voting status.
The committee was approved with an overwhelming show-of-hands vote with only token opposition. A motion challenging two of the committee members was also easily defeated.
In addition to Freeman and Marshall, the other nine voting members include: Lyn Heying of Palmyra; Jody Shelenhamer of Bolivar; Jeff Purvis of Imperial; Diana Chambers of St. Louis; Gary Barkley of Excelsior Springs; Ed Hamilton of Houston; Larry Fackler of Versailles; Doug Austin of Cape Girardeau and Randy Comer of Chillicothe.