Southern Baptists’ Cooperative Program gifts will help survivors of a succession of hurricanes that wreaked havoc on Texas, Louisiana, the Caribbean, and Florida, coupled with wildfires that have ravaged large swaths of the western United States.
The Executive Committee, acting on behalf of the SBC at its September 18–19 meeting, allocated the first $1.25 million of any national CP overage to the North American Mission Board to assist those affected by 2017 disasters in the United States and its territories. It also allocated $165,521 to IMB for international disaster relief, the CP overage that otherwise would have gone to the Executive Committee.
The Southern Baptist Convention ended its fiscal year $8.14 million over its 2016–2017 budgeted goal of $189 million. According to the budget formula adopted by SBC messengers, each SBC entity would have received its same percentage of the overage, with the exception of IMB and the SBC Executive Committee—IMB would have received 51 percent of any overage, while EC’s percentage was slated to drop to 2.4 percent of any overage.
“We are grateful to God for His provision to SBC missions and ministries over this past year,” Frank S. Page, president and CEO of the SBC Executive Committee, said. “Our Lord has provided and given us above and beyond.”
Noting that the Lord’s work is supported by His people, Page added, “I am so grateful for the millions of faithful tithers and other contributors who support the ministries of their local churches.
“Without their obedience to give as they have been prospered by the Lord, our missions and ministries would quickly come to a screeching halt,” he said.
Page voiced gratitude to the officers and members of the Executive Committee for the CP reallocation, describing it as “a strong stance to minister to hurting persons in the many disasters that have recently befallen our nation and world.”
“It is imperative,” he said, “that we be proactive and set a good example of ministering to these persons whose lives have been forever altered.”
The SBC received $197,146,731.08 in Cooperative Program Allocation gifts for the year. This amount is 4.31 percent more than its budgeted goal of $189 million and is the highest amount of national CP gifts since the global economic crisis rocked the nation almost a decade ago.
After the first $1.25 million in national CP overage was distributed to NAMB for disaster relief, the remaining overage was allocated as follows: 53.4 percent to IMB; 22.79 percent to NAMB; 22.16 percent to the seminaries; and 1.65 percent to the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
The EC also approved a one-time suspension of an SBC Business and Financial Plan provision that otherwise prevents one SBC entity from allocating its CP gifts to assist other SBC entities.
Jeff Palmer, executive director of Baptist Global Response, reported that the Southern Baptist humanitarian organization in partnership with the IMB is assisting local Baptist partners and entities in three Caribbean countries.
“The contributions to the IMB from the EC will go a long way to place food and supplies into the hands of our Baptist brothers and sisters as they help with the continuing assessments and distributions,” Palmer said in written comments.
“Thank you EC for the boost to our ability to respond,” he said.
Stateside, more than four hundred Southern Baptist Disaster Relief units from multiple states had been deployed in various capacities in Florida and Texas. SBDR teams are also making inroads in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands where the devastated infrastructure of the island territories has hampered relief efforts.
As of November 7, DR volunteers had served more than 2.8 million meals; tackled more than two thousand chainsaw and seven thousand mud-out, debris removal, and mold remediation assignments; provided almost eighty thousand shower and laundry services; engaged in 3,339 Gospel conversations; and seen 585 professions of faith.
A video for use in churches highlighting the work of NAMB’s Send Relief ministry is below.
Compiled from Baptist Press and NAMB reports.
Recent Southern Baptist Disaster Relief Efforts
Data from November 7, 2017, NAMB Disaster Relief Situation Report
|Hurricane Harvey Activity|
|Professions of Faith||437|
|Children Cared For||943|
|Hurricane Irma Activity|
|Professions of Faith||80|
|Send Relief Activity|
|Professions of Faith||45|
|Tree and Yard Clean Up||242|
|Crisis Buckets Given||846|
|Hurricane Maria Puerto Rico|
|Professions of Faith||21|
|Hurricane Maria Virgin Islands|
|Professions of Faith||2|