Posted tagged ‘MBC’

Update on the Acts 29 Churches in the Missouri Baptist Convention

January 11, 2008

Micah Fries shares an update from Darren Casper who is managing the “Show Me Church Planting Fund.” For background information, the Missouri Baptist Convention de-funded the dually-affilicated MBC/Acts 29 churches, all of whom did not violate their commitments to the North American Mission Board (NAMB) or the MBC. These churches and pastors were approved by both entities and were to receive the financial support as committed and promised by the MBC. Due to some political maneuvering, the MBC reneged on their commitment–without informing Acts 29 or the churches prior to their decision. In a matter of three weeks, the funds were removed.

Here’s the update from Darren Casper:

While there were efforts by some state leaders to go ahead and fulfill the existing funding commitment, it now appears certain that Acts 29 churches will lose their funding by the Missouri Baptist Convention.

St. Louis Metro has kicked in $5,000 to get this fund rolling and the other checks are starting to come in. We are somewhere around $9,000 now, but closer to $26,000 is needed to fund these church plants.

Each of these church plants have been in good standing with the Missouri Baptist Convention and have expressed commitment to the Baptist Faith and Message as well as their partnering relationship with the Acts 29 network.

An accurate record is being kept by our office staff of funds received, distributed, and contributing partners. Unless you tell me otherwise, these churches will know of all the individuals, organizations, and churches that have contributed to the fund. If you have questions, or would like to contribute to this fund:

St. Louis Metro Baptist Association
Attn. Darren Casper – Church Planting
3859 Fee Fee Road
Bridgeton, MO 63044
314.571.7579 x. 103

Incidentally enough, David Tolliver, interim executive director of the MBC has the lead article on their website which is entitled “People Are More Important Than Things.” Ahem. Tell that to the pastors and Missouri Baptists who are being de-funded.

While it is great that $9,000 has already come in, to make up for the MBC, they will need an additional $17,000 to recoup. Please consider supporting these pastors and their churches both through your prayers and your giving.

To contribute to Show Me Church Planting Fund, you can send a check to:

St. Louis Metro Baptist Association
(designate it for the “Show Me Church Planting Fund”)

Mailing address:

St. Louis Metro Bapt. Assoc.
attn. Darren Casper
3859 Fee Fee Road
Bridgeton, Mo. 63044

Here are my previous articles regarding this matter:

1. Acts 29 and the MBC

2. When I Am Ashamed to be a Southern Baptist

3. Let’s Talk About Accountability – Let’s Talk About You and Me

4. A More ‘Conventional’ Way of Supporting SBC Church Plants

5. Ascol Interviews Axed MBC Church Planter Kevin Larson

Ascol Interviews Axed MBC Church Planter Kevin Larson

December 16, 2007

Over at the Founder’s blog, Tom Ascol provides an excellent interview and insight into the tragic motion the Missouri Baptist Convention made to de-fund their own church planters. Kevin Larson, pastor of Karis Community Church, answered several questions which, if anything, should help us realize that these decisions made at an executive level are affecting real people and their family, churches and their ministries.

A couple things to note from the interview. Kevin is a graduate of Southern Seminary (which I currently attend) and also checked into NETS, a great church planting program in the New England area. Kevin was a member of Clifton Baptist in Louisville under the leadership of Drs. Tom Schreiner and Bruce Ware (Schreiner ordained him). His ecclesiology is heavily influenced by Dever and IX Marks, preaches lengthy expository messages every Sunday, and has a high view of church membership. Sounds like the kind of church planter we need to be de-funding, doesn’t it?

Here’s some notable quotes:

“While at Southern, I honestly hadn’t heard anything about Acts 29, but, in my view, an abstinence only view would be unthinkable by virtue of students having sola scriptura beaten in their heads everyday.”

“We are so grateful for the support the MBC has provided. But, I do think the executive board’s decision is wrong and discouraging. Although they do have the right to make that decision, I say that the further narrowing of parameters of cooperation does not bode well for the MBC’s future.”

“In Missouri, I think this is about alcohol, yes, but it’s ultimately about power. Who will control Missouri Baptists? By the way, I have even heard rumblings that the group’s next target in Missouri will be Calvinism.”

“The average Southern student thinks Driscoll is fine, Tim Keller is amazing, and can’t understand what all the fighting is about. Why? Because Dr. Mohler and his faculty teach sola scriptura and the other four solas of the Reformation. And that makes this whole issue pretty simple.”

“Well, those mainline denominations are graying due to liberalism. Young people want something true and something worth believing and dying for. But the SBC, I’m afraid, could gray and ultimately die because of legalism. If this is allowed to persist and grow, it will push young Reformed, expositional preaching, church disciplining, and gospel cherishing guys like me out to the curb. I am convinced this is the case.”

Thank God for brothers like Kevin Larson! His response reveals that Karis Community Church is more than a just a name–it’s who they are. It’s not easy responding with such gracious and gospel-driven restraint, and if this whole deal does anything, I pray it points us to the future of SBC with men like Kevin. I am also thankful for men like Steve Tanner, Jerry Field, and Jim Shaver who have given their full support. May God turn the MBC probe light into a spotlight that offers us encouragement and hope through the churches and ministries like Karis Community Church.