MYRTLE GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH 5920 Lillian Highway, Pensacola, FL 32506 - 850-455-7389 MINUTES OF THE REGULAR BUSINESS MEETING ON September 19, 2012   The regular business meeting was held on September 19 2012 at 6:00pm.  The meeting was held in the worship center and was opened in prayer.  CLERK’S BUSINESS:  Bonnie Quinley presented the minutes of the August 22, 2012, Regular Business Meeting as printed in the September Business Meeting package.  Motion to approve by Donna Goldsby and seconded by Roland Kooman.  APPROVED by show of hands. Requests for letters of church membership:  For August From:  Central Baptist Church, Norfolk, VA, for letter of Angela Simmons Barger.  Motion to approve by Ellen Guerin and seconded by Morgan Miller. APPROVED by show of hands.  New Members to be approved:  For August Profession of Faith:  Kevin Barnes, Dustin Knobloch, Godfred Asae Statement:  Julia Mallen Letter: Ray Winstead, Steve Colinger, Kimberly Colinger Motion to approve by Wanda Drainer and seconded by Shirley Johnston.   APPROVED by show of hands.  TREASURER’S REPORT:  Comment: Shelia Ward:  We had five Sundays in August so it looks it looks a little slack for this month.  Five Sundays do make a difference when you have a monthly check coming in.  That is part of what you see on the deficit on the report.  Our budget committee is meeting on a weekly basis.  We are trying to bring the budget in line with revenue and expenses for this next year so that we won’t see these negative numbers.  That is our goal.  I am very pleased with the meetings and finances of the church overall.   Shelia Ward presented the Financial Report for August as printed in the September Business Meeting package. Motion to approve by Jack Windley and seconded by Chuck Keistler.  APPROVED by show of hands.  Shelia presented the following recommendation from the Finance Committee:  We are building up revenue in our building use fund due to different organizations that use our buildings for birthday parties, poll training for voter registration and precinct voting.  We have accumulated $2,388.74 in this fund.  We are recommending that we transfer the building use funds into the general budget to help our bottom line.  That will also leave deposits for weddings in the building use fund.  We need to keep funds available for paying custodians and various personnel who are involved in the wedding.  Over and above the wedding fees, we want to move into the general budget.  APPROVED by show of hands.  COMMITTEE REPORTS:  None OLD BUSINESS:  None NEW BUSINESS:  Chuck Keistler presented the following recommendation for consideration by the church. In the November 18, 1992, business meeting, Coach Mayo and Al Elmore brought in about sixty (60) students and Coach Mayo moved that we amend the budget to reduce the cooperative budget from twenty percent (20%) to fifteen percent (15%) and that the remaining five percent (5%) of the budgeted amount would be put into a line item for a Family Life Center (FLC).  The motion was seconded.  After much Baptist discussion, it passed.  But during that discussion, it was implied that after the FLC was paid for, the five percent (5%) would be restored to the mission’s ministry.  Of course at that time Myrtle Grove Baptist Church’s (MGBC) goal was to increase the cooperative program to twenty-five percent (25%).  Times have changed, and we have done more here since that time, which are all good.  After the FLC was paid for, MGBC decided to remodel the sanctuary and build additional educational spaces.  The church voted to continue using the five percent (5%) of the budget toward paying for this project.  The two projects are paid for so it is either time to restore the five percent (5%) to the budget or say sorry we are not going to do that for projects in the mission’s ministry.  That is in keeping with the spirit of the November 18, 1992 business meeting.  To me, the Lord has revealed a couple of alternatives for us.  One, of course is to do nothing to restore that, even though we said we would.  Two, would be to restore the five percent (5%) into the cooperative program.  The Lord has put this on my heart and I have talked with the pastor, Dr. Smith when he was chairman of the deacons, and briefed the deacons, the Finance Committee and the Missions Committee on this since it affects them.  I will just read this so it will be easy for you to understand rather than my trying to explain it. 1. Choose one of the following if the church desires to restore 5% to missions giving. A. Restore 5% of the budget to the cooperative program. B. Allocate 5% of the budget to support MGBC mission efforts in support of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Strategy Coordinating Concept to support North American Mission and international mission trips/projects by our church members, for church plants, for student mission trips, our Christian Social Ministry, and for church mission conferences.  I also recommend that the Missions Committee coordinate with the appropriate ministries/committees to develop procedures and policies for administering the missions program if we so chose.  I have talked to the chairman of that committee, and they are willing to do that if the church choses to approve it. 2. Allow the Budget/Finance Committee to determine how to finance the increase and by what percentage each year until the 5% is restored and includes it in the proposed annual budget. Donna Goldsby seconded the recommendation.   Comment:  Sam Lucas:  I am not sure, but a little over 2 ½ years ago we voted on this to not have that five percent (5%).  I think we should look at that before we go ahead and vote. Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  You are correct.  I was chairman of the Budget Finance Committee and at that time we were giving fifteen percent (15%).  We recommended reducing it from fifteen percent (15%) to ten percent (10%). It is a different item.  Sam, this is a different item if you will.  You are correct about 2½ years ago.  We reduced it from fifteen percent to ten percent (10%)   But we were still paying five percent (5%) on the debt which is now paid. This item goes back to 1992 when we were giving twenty percent (20%).  It was implied that when these were paid off, we would restore it.  So again I am bringing it to the church.  I am the spokesman and others feel we should restore it. After many sleepless nights, waking thoughts, and prayers, I recommend that MGBC approve this alternative which would be five percent (5%) toward mission projects by members of MGBC.  We have never been able to fund those missions by our church members.  It has been by some generosity by others and their willingness to go that we have done that.  The reason for this recommendation is that the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) has reduced the number of missionaries in the field due to the economic downturn.  The SBC has asked local churches to enter into a program called Strategy Coordination Churches which asks local churches to select, support and send volunteer missionary teams to supplant the diminishing number of professional missionaries and staff here in North America  and throughout the world that they feel the Lord is directing them to serve.  The Committee then gets trained and  they in turn train more volunteering missionaries to determine the needs of the area and to develop a three (3) to  five (5) year strategy to provide for these needs.  The Missions Committee would then coordinate the plan for its  duration regardless of its elected leadership on the Committee.  This would be similar to what we are doing in Citronelle with a five (5) year plan and like we started in Bolivia.  In other words, it is not a vacation mission trip that the SBC is talking about.  It is talking about developing people to be able to spread the gospel in their area of the world.  For example, this church has already been in Bolivia two (2) years.  We have trained about sixty (60) pastors there.  To me, MGBC, we have become more of an Acts 1:8 church under the direction of our pastor.  I feel we should fund our own missions’ efforts as a church such as these plants.  Also, not only for that but, for our student missions trips, for church plants, Christian social ministries, and for MGBC missions conference which will provide control and accountability.  If the church agrees to restore the five percent (5%) to the missions giving, whether to the cooperative program or to missions projects conducted by MGBC, we need to allow the Budget and Finance Committee to look at what percentage that can be given each year until we reach the five percent (5%).  It is obvious that we can’t just say we will give five percent (5%) next year because of the economic downturn.  If we feel that we have the moral obligation to restore it, we need to give the Budget and Finance Committee the leeway to look at the overall budget and present that to the church for what can be done. Comment:  Robert Smith:  I’d like to preface what I am going to say and point out some facts.  Chuck is recalling his proposal from memory.  My memory says that, of course I was Chairman of the Family Life Committee and the Building Committee; I made one of the proposals to look at the cooperative program and to allocate some of that money to the building of the FLC.  The discussion, as I recall it was, and it was a rather heated meeting.  The older gentleman, Gene Milstead, Bill Dykes and many others felt very strongly that the cooperative program was just that.  We were in the business of winning people to Christ.  We do it best by using the cooperative program and not just using our money to help with the mission work.  Having said that, I recall that the full five percent (5%) was to be restored to the cooperative program period. Question:  Bonnie Quinley:  May I have a copy of your recommendation? Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Yes you may when we are done.  I will make a copy of it. Comment:  Chuck Keistler:  I appreciate everyone’s comments.  I gave two choices here: one on the cooperative program or another one that the Lord has led me to consider.  It is up to the church to make the decision the way they feel the Lord wants them to go or to make the decision not to do it. Comment:  Pastor Ron:  Chuck, clarify again or read through that Option A or Option B. Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Option A would be to restore the five percent (5%) to the cooperative program.  Option B would be instead of that, allocate the five percent (5%) to our own mission efforts, which we have never done as a church.  Again that supports the Southern Baptist Convention’s new concept of the Strategy Coordinating Concept which they didn’t have back then. So again, what they want the churches to do is to train people like we are doing in Citronelle and Bolivia.  For either choice, we would need to give the latitude to our treasurer and our Budget Finance Committee to determine the percentage and how soon we can do that.  I think that with these economic times to say next year let’s put five percent (5%) might be hard.  I think we have a moral obligation to address this item because of what was said at the business meeting in 1992.  Comment:  Pastor Ron:  Whether we choose A or B option it would go to the Budget and Finance Committee to determine (if either A or B) when and over what period of time that percentage could be restored.  Question:  Keely Zayas:  Chuck, you are saying that whatever percent we vote to put into a line item has to be voted on by the church to spend it? Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Whatever the church decides to do one way or the other then the Budget and Finance Committee would present in next year’s annual budget to the church how much percentage would go into that fund.  Whether we decide to put one percent (1%) more into the cooperative program budget then it would be eleven percent (11%) instead of ten percent (10%).  If we support our own mission projects, it would be one percent (1%) in a line item for that. Question:  Keeley Zayas:  Then out of that money which is budgeted to go into that line item, how is it expended out once it is in? Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Once it is in the line item, once again, the Missions Committee would have to develop the policy and present it to the church for approval.  For example, let me take the Capital Escrow Account.  We budget $10,000 a year to take care of that account and it stays in that account.  Say if we choose Option B, this is just an example, the Budget and Finance Committee could say we will put one percent (1%) in there in 2013, and it will go into a designated account until the end of the year then we know how much we can use in 2014.  We go to the Missions Committee and say this is how much you have to spend. Then it comes as a recommendation from the Missions Committee to the church to use for the proposed missions.  This is not a part of my recommendation, it is just an example.  Question: Court Guerin: It was in 1992 when we took the five percent (5%) away that we obligated ourselves to put it back at some time, right?  Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Yes, that was implied in the meeting in a heated debate. Question:  Court Guerin:  If that was implied does it not naturally follow that? Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  Well, to me it is a moral obligation.  However, these are different times.  Since 1992 we have more facilities and we have two additional pastors, which are good things.  We have a PLC which is self- sufficient.  To me, it would be a yes because I was here. Question:  Court GuerinWith both plans you could incrementally add to the minimum?  Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  We would have to.  That would be the wise thing to do, in my opinion. Comment: Court Guerin:  That is all I have to say.  Question:  Barbara Goldsby:  Option B would keep the money in house, and we could use it for our mission trips and the kids’ mission trips?  Am I right? Answer:  That is correct.  But I stipulate that we would need to follow the guidelines of the Southern Baptist Convention with their changes; they have training for that.  Virgil Oldham is very well versed on that.  I believe Craig Bonelli is going to brief the Missions Committee about that in the near future.  I am saying that because if we commit to doing that, I will use Bolivia as an example.  We had a visions team go out to determine needs, and then we had another team go in to conduct a pastors’ training conference.  We also had some medical people go up the river. We haven’t been back.  People were paying this out of their own pockets.  But if we did this out of the church budget and made a commitment, we would have a three to five year obligation to develop these people to go out and have their churches spread the gospel of Christ.  We now have a five year plan at Citronelle which is close, so we are able to do that easily.  We are into the third year there.  These would not be vacation mission trips, but people would really work at them.  I envision developing people groups there.  We would continue to have our youth mission trips and planting churches.  The recommendations would come from our Missions Committee to the church for approval.  Question:  Shelia Ward:  I wasn’t here twenty years ago, but I understand what is going on.  If we use the money locally, in the United States or internationally, then use our people as mission teams, aren’t we doing that in conjunction with the new strategy of the cooperative program?   Didn’t you have a new strategy you were talking about?  This is a new way they are developing missions so it is not a separate thing from the cooperative.  We are keeping the money in house to go where they have cut back on missionaries. Answer:  Chuck Keistler:  For example, I will use Bolivia because I am familiar with it from talking with Virgil about it.  They have one representative there now, and I believe that person was going to leave.  There is not a person funded to work with those people to continue the development.  If our church continues its obligation, we would have our own people going there to help them each year because we would have funding.  Now people who are paying out of their own pockets maybe don’t want to go.  A vote by show of hands was taken.  Option A received nineteen (19) votes.  Option B received thirty-one (31) votes.  Option B passed by majority vote.  Again, it is up to the church to make that decision.  ADJOURNMENT  Motion to adjourn by Jack Windley and seconded by Chuck Keistler.   APPROVED by show of hands. _____________________________            _____________________________ Bonnie Quinley, Church Clerk    Ron Lentine, Moderator