Constitutional changes on messengers weighed
By Allen Palmeri
ST. LOUIS—Changes to the Constitution of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) are to be voted on during the 2009 annual meeting at First Baptist Church, Raytown, due to messengers voting in the affirmative during the 174th annual meeting here at the Millennium Hotel.
An amendment entitling a church to one messenger for every 100 members or fraction thereof or for every $2,500 given to the Convention through the Cooperative Program in the previous reporting year was read. A separate amendment increasing the maximum number of messengers from 15 to 20 was also read.
Another amendment pertains to duties of officers. It reads:
“In case of death, resignation, disability or ineligibility of the secretary, first vice president and/or second vice president, or of the succession of either to the office of president, the resulting vacancy or vacancies shall be filled by the Executive Board for the unexpired term. At the first Executive Board meeting after death, resignation, disability or ineligibility of the first vice president, the second vice president, and/or secretary, the Executive Board shall receive nominations from the floor with a simple majority being required for election.”
Passage of this language in Raytown would avert future situations like the one that took place in 2008 when the MBC, because of a pastor moving out of state, had to go most of the year without a recording secretary.
Time is required for education concerning new language in the Credentials Committee Rules and Procedures that would avert the possible removal of 200 or more churches from Missouri Baptist life. Messengers received information on a plan that would extend grace and initiate a communications process next year that will hopefully lead to more churches contributing to the work of the MBC through the Cooperative Program (CP) on at least an annual basis.
Messengers voted to grant membership in the MBC to 11 churches. They are: New Testament Baptist of Jefferson County, Herculaneum; Grace Fellowship, Independence; God’s Garden, Brookfield; River of Life Baptist, Cameron; Lighthouse Community Baptist, Marshfield; Safe Harbor Baptist, Bonne Terre; Iglesia Pan de Vida, Grandview; Renick Community, Renick; Stonebridge Community, Jefferson City; New Beginning Baptist, Seymour; and Friendship Baptist, Piedmont.
Messengers also voted to remove 26 churches from membership because they have either requested removal or they have disbanded. They are: Overland, St. Louis; Windsor, Imperial; Timothy, Kansas City; The Good Shepherd, Adrian; Emden, Emden; Path of Life Community, Wright City; Believer’s of Hannibal, Hannibal; Bethlehem, Lockwood; Dresden, Sedalia; Set Free, Kansas City; Southside, St. Louis; Edgewater Chapel, Cape Fair; Emmanuel Vietnamese, St. Louis; Real Life, St. Louis; Temple, Sikeston; Santa Fe Hills, Kansas City; River Port, St. Louis; Baden Outreach Center, St. Louis; International Disciple-Making, St. Louis; House of Worship, Greentop; Iglesia Bautista Puerta De Cielo, Kennett; First Baptist Purdin, Purdin; Peach Orchard, Gideon; Fellowship, O’Fallon; Brooklyn Heights, Carthage; and Providence Half Rock, Spickard.