Pastors to receive ‘One Sacred Effort’ film in SBC Life issue

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Pastors and denominational workers across the Southern Baptist Convention will receive a free copy of the latest installment in the “Forged by Faith” video series in the October issue of SBC Life, Morris H. Chapman, president of the SBC Executive Committee, said Sept. 18.

The video series, which is meant to educate Southern Baptists on the history and operations of the convention, is produced by the Executive Committee, and SBC Life is the journal of the Executive Committee.

“There’s no cost recovery in this kind of mailing, but we believed that the message was important enough to financially support the sending of this DVD out to all of our churches,” Chapman said during his report to Executive Committee members in Nashville, Tenn., before a showing of “The Cooperative Program: One Sacred Effort.”

Chapman urged Executive Committee members to tell others to make sure they see the film and to show it in their churches because it’s a unique resource that could help thousands of Southern Baptists have a better understanding of their unified giving plan.

“It takes a lot of effort and more money for an organization of our size to do this kind of thing, but we are withholding nothing to try to say to Southern Baptists the Cooperative Program is important for our mission work all around the world,” Chapman said.

One Sacred Effort, which follows “A History of the Southern Baptist Convention: The Early Years” in the Forged by Faith series, compares the Cooperative Program to the Hoover Dam. Both ensure a steady flow of resources -- in one case, money, and the other case, water -- to the intended target, and both produce beneficial byproducts and results, the video says.

Both videos were introduced during the SBC annual meeting in Greensboro, N.C., in June via a loop on closed circuit television at the convention hotel.

“We’re trying to do everything possible because we’ve learned that in this generation we need not only Cooperative Program promotion, we need Cooperative Program education,” Chapman told the Executive Committee. “There are so many of our church members who are in their early 40s and younger who do not know about the Cooperative Program. [They] do not know how important the CP is to Southern Baptist missions. Giving to missions through the Cooperative Program is a vital part of our history and is critical in the support of world missions today and in the future.”

After Executive Committee members viewed the film during Chapman’s report, their chairman, William Harrell, voiced his approval, also.

“I think that’s a tremendous and well done achievement, don’t you?” Harrell, pastor of Abilene Baptist Church in Evans, Ga., said. “I think it needs to be played everywhere in all of our churches to help people understand a little bit better what the Cooperative Program is all about.... We’re very happy and very proud to present that to our people.”

D. August Boto, general counsel and vice president for convention policy at the SBC Executive Committee, is co-executive producer of the series with Chris Chapman, director of information systems at the SBC EC. Boto said Southern Baptist distinctives, including the Baptist Faith and Message, and convention processes will be covered in future releases.

“Anything to broaden understanding about the convention among Southern Baptists and others will be considered for inclusion,” Boto said. “Our hope is that we will see wide acceptance among the churches for use in new member classes and other training sessions.”

Also in his report to Executive Committee members, Chapman noted the addition of a stewardship division to the Cooperative Program division, a move approved by the convention at its annual meeting in June. He announced the hiring of Ashley Clayton as an associate vice president for stewardship, and commended Bob Rodgers, vice president for the Cooperative Program, for his work in advancing CP education.

“Already these two men are making tremendous progress in getting things ready and helping to set a new strategy for the Cooperative Program in the days to come,” Chapman said.

The Executive Committee staff is working diligently to provide the convention with quality resources, Chapman said, and he asked the members to pray for effectiveness.

“I hope you’ll pray our churches will make these resources available to their members in order that every Southern Baptist will realize that the Cooperative Program is not primarily about giving, but about missions" Chapman said. “This is a vehicle, it is a channel, it is a lifeline. We give through the Cooperative Program, not to the Cooperative Program. We give through the CP for the sake of missions.”

Chapman also mentioned that though it was a tragedy, Hurricane Katrina helped put a face on missions expenditures because people all over the nation and world saw what Southern Baptist disaster relief units were doing to help people recover.

“We must engage in world missions together in a spirit of cooperation while providing support through the Cooperative Program,” Chapman said.

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