By Allen Palmeri
LINN—The Christian Life Commission (CLC) of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) met May 15 at First Baptist Church here under new leadership that expressed concerns about a tighter budget to come and how to spend wisely.
New Chairman Jeff Brown, associate professor of Christian Studies at Hannibal-LaGrange College and interim pastor of First Baptist Church, Mexico, encouraged commissioners to look at each line item in the current budget. New Vice Chairman David Krueger, the host pastor, is working with Brown to obtain more details from the MBC on CLC funds to get a better grip on the bottom line.
“The question is, ‘How can we be better stewards?’” Brown said. “I think we can still get the same stuff done. We’ll just do it differently.”
A cut in the MMO budget from $15,000 to $11,000 in 2011 led to discussion on how the CLC would adjust. It was agreed that the cut would be manageable with prudent spending and no anticipated new expenses. The bulk of this portion of the CLC budget, $9,000, goes to a legislative coordinator, Kerry Messer, who serves as the legislative liasion at the State Capitol for Missouri Baptists.
Commissioners discussed improving the CLC website at www.mbcclc.org. Brochures can be made available by PDF files and by getting more mailouts out electronically. Krueger agreed to check on how to help the website’s appearance.
They also debated whether a presence on FaceBook would be worthwhile. It was agreed that it could help the CLC achieve its overall objectives. Commissioner Brooke Taylor, pastor, Bethel Baptist Church, Independence, said he would check into the CLC’s options concerning FaceBook fan and group sites.
“The big focus is that we as individuals want to minister to Missouri Baptists—not just as a Commission, but as individuals,” Brown said. “I’m trying to figure out what everybody’s passion, calling, and desires are.”
An inquiry from a concerned citizen on how the CLC was promoting pro-life issues in the church prompted commissioners to list ways that this goal is being accomplished. Brown said he would summarize the information and deliver it to the citizen for his review.
Increasing the visibility of the CLC remains a key topic with Brown advancing the idea that sponsoring a conference or workshop could be a solution. He said he would like to hear suggested themes from Missouri Baptists.
There were six commissioners present at the meeting.
The next meeting was set for 10 a.m. July 22 at the Baptist Building.