June 22, 2016
By Jeff Huett
GREENSBORO, N.C. — Driven by a passion to see spiritual and social transformation through Jesus Christ, today the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship launched a $12-million campaign to support the long-term presence of field personnel in global missions, to help form healthy congregations and to nurture young Baptists.
At the launch, generous individuals, churches and foundations have given or pledged more than $8.5 million, or 71 percent of the campaign goal. Lead contributors include the Eula Mae and John Baugh Foundation, the Lilly Endowment, Christ is Our Salvation Foundation, Patricia and Robert Ayres and John and Jeanette Cothran.
Nearly 80 percent of the campaign goal seeks to increase CBF’s endowments, which will help sustain CBF ministry for the next 25 years. Additional funds will support block grants to CBF’s 18 state and regional organizations for ministry in their areas.
Of the $12 million, half will support CBF Global Missions. Specifically, that portion of the campaign will help sustain the long-term presence of field personnel ministering in 30 countries, reinstate a two-year mission apprenticeship program and impact the poorest counties in the United States through the Fellowship’s rural poverty initiative, Together for Hope.
CBF’s ministries that help form healthy congregations will receive $4 million in support from the campaign. Thriving churches are the cornerstone of the Fellowship, and the campaign will support an intentional congregational renewal process, advocacy work that assists others in finding their voice, church starting initiatives and financial literacy programs for congregations and pastoral leaders.
The campaign will also serve to equip and nurture young Baptists for their Christian journey by adding $2 million in endowment support for theological education, scholarships, retreat experiences and church internships.
“As we look back 25 years to the beginning of CBF, what it has become and all that it encompasses seems like a miracle,” Vick said. “Over time, both the opportunities and needs for CBF have grown. Moving forward and spreading God’s love both at home and around the world takes greater resources. That’s why I believe this 25th Anniversary Campaign is so vital for our future endeavors and why I am both pleased and honored to be a part of it.”
At a launch event today, Anita Snell Daniels, a member of the campaign Steering Committee, said that the long-term impact of our field personnel inspires her to support the campaign.
“It is a joy to be able to participate in the campaign,” Daniels said. “Twenty-five years of working and walking alongside our extraordinary CBF field personnel compels me to give. They are incredibly talented and committed to sharing God’s love and restoration to the hurting.”
In additional to individual Cooperative Baptists, CBF partner congregations are also encouraged to help sustain our work together into the future. Special budget contributions, offerings, gifts from endowments or designated funds are ways congregations have given in support of the campaign.
Preston Clegg, pastor of Second Baptist Church of Little Rock, Ark., said his congregation expressed excitement about supporting CBF by helping to ensure its next 25 years.
“Second Baptist-Little Rock gave to the campaign with a smile on our face and joy in our hearts,” Clegg said. “We celebrate our identity as Cooperative Baptists, and our pride in CBF’s past is only transcended by the hope we have in our shared future. We believe God is calling CBF onward and upward into a splendid future, and we saw this gift as an early investment in that glorious journey.”
CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter said this campaign celebrates our foundations as it assists in sustaining the future of CBF.
“Christ’s love compelled us 25 years ago, and it is compelling us today,” Paynter said. “Celebrating our 25th Anniversary is an opportunity to invest in the future of CBF. It’s an opportunity to invest in missions, in ministry, in our identity and in our young Baptists. It’s an opportunity to partner with other people and with other churches in support of the great multiplication of God’s work in the world.”
For more information about the campaign, including options for making a gift, visit www.cbf.net/25thcampaign.
CBF is a Christian Network that helps people put their faith to practice through ministry efforts, global missions and a broad community of support.The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.