The 1% CP Challenge “is a succinct way to do something more—an understandable way to say, ‘Yeah, we can do that,’” Frank Page, president of the SBC Executive Committee, said. “It is understandable, is easily acted upon, and can be done without shifting major sections of a church’s finances.”
According to LifeWay Research’s 2012 Cooperative Program Omnibus Survey, 7 percent of cooperating Southern Baptist churches reported they had accepted the 1% CP Challenge. An additional 8 percent of pastors indicated they plan to lead their churches to accept the 1% CP Challenge in the coming year. The survey was taken this past May.
“The Cooperative Program is not a reservoir that we hold; it’s money that we send through the CP to missions and ministries,” Page said. “It’s exciting to see new pastors, younger pastors, ethnic pastors, Anglo pastors, say, ‘You know, it’s time to put more emphasis on the Cooperative Program.’”
Following his election as Southern Baptist Convention president in June, Fred Luter Jr., pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans, joined Page in challenging messengers to the state Baptist convention annual meetings to accept the 1% CP Challenge. This past fall, many of the state conventions embraced the theme of the 1% CP Challenge, making it a focal point at their annual meetings.
If every cooperating Southern Baptist church raised its contributions through the Cooperative Program by 1 percent, the resultant CP gifts would increase by almost $100 million dollars in a single year. This would allow the state conventions to make a greater impact on lostness in their respective states. It would give NAMB greater flexibility in its Send North America church planting initiative. It would allow the International Mission Board to keep a larger number of missionaries on the field. It would allow our seminaries to explore new delivery systems for ministerial training and graduate theological education to make an even greater impact on training pastors and church leaders for effective service.
Simply put, the 1% CP Challenge has the potential to be the rising tide that raises all the ministry boats our cooperating churches support.