Questions Surrounding the Executive Committee: Part 2

6320loganphotojpgimageYou can find part 1 of this article here

3. The forced resignation of Clark Logan Vice President for Business and Finance.

The story broke last week that Clark Logan resigned on July 1 (though some speculated at first that he may have been fired). This caused the “Twitterverse” to be abuzz with speculation as to the reason for the abrupt resignation. Southern Baptists were calling for an explanation of what was happening but no explanation was forthcoming (BP has yet to run the story which, as mentioned, may reveal an agenda). The Twitterverse also has been abuzz with declarations from pastors and leaders around the convention of what the future should be for the EC and its leadership. Initially members of the EC had no idea that it had happened or why it had happened (and there are indications this is still the case). Several days later Logan released a statement that he had been asked to resign, but Logan wanted to make it clear that it was NOT for an unethical or immoral reason. Dr. Chapman acknowledged that Logan had not been involved in unethical or immoral actions but declined to comment any further or confirm that he asked for the resignation. Dr. Chapman gave no reason for the forced resignation (see the article here). The people of the SBC are screaming for an explanation but will likely get very little.

Let me be clear. Denominational executives should be able, in my opinion, to fire any employee that they feel does not fit with their team. This is the task of leadership. However, that does not give the right to denominational leaders to blindside, not give opportunities for course correction, treat harshly, or to cover up the actual reasons for their actions. And, the responses to those actions show the confidence (or lack thereof) in the leadership who makes the choices (see below).

Immediately the tweets about this situation began to come out and multiply. They ranged from speculation for the reason of the resignation to outrage at the direction the EC is going. Many expressed confusion and questioned what was exactly at the heart of the resignation. Some have speculated that political affiliation with those pushing the GCR or Logan’s being vocal about needed changes within the EC led to this action on the part of the EC. Here is a sample of some of the speculation and outrage in the twitter discussion:

@tomascol: is wondering if a prominent denominational executive has jumped the shark

@pastorclint: It’s time for a change at the top.

@drmoore has heard from younger Southern Baptists all over the country who also stand with the Logans. #ClarkLogan

@DanOdle Wants to know how denominational executives are held accountable…and is willing to drive to Nashville to do it #ClarkLogan

@pastorjcox Thinking that things seem a little fishy in Nashville and wonders what’s really going on behind the scenes. #clarklogan #sbc2009

@nathanlino RT CentralRev, EC trustee: Been dealing with Logan resignation all day. Does not seem to be merited. Grieved for all involved! #ClarkLogan

ftras @TommyRedding yep, we need more info, but it seems that the GCR is at the heart of this #clarklogan

@albertmohler A man who has no reason to fear the truth deserves the eager support of those who love the truth. The truth will come out. #ClarkLogan

@JimmyScroggins The SBC needs a restructured bureaucracy. We will have it. But it won’t matter unless trustees hold guys accountable. #ClarkLogan

@JimmyScroggins #ClarkLogan + incoherent convention rant + change on the wind = trustees need to act.

Simply put, regardless of what happened, many in the SBC are questioning the leadership at the EC as a result of the forced resignation of Logan.

4. The Great Commission Task Force.

The EC and its leadership have openly opposed the GCR. Dr. Chapman took time in his address to question the need of a GCR in Southern Baptist life. Yet, the messengers spoke with overwhelming clarity by over 95% that this is what the convention wants. Dr. Chapman stood firmly against the idea, and Southern Baptists decided he was wrong. This is yet another example that the EC may be out of touch with the convention it is supposed to act for “ad interim” 363 days a year.

5. Preservation of status quo.

The message continues to come from the EC that everything is ok and there is no need for reform in the system. Indeed, the message from the top at this year’s convention was that we do not even need to ask questions about our system. Dr. Chapman upheld this in his address by quoting a statistic that he also mentioned in his article criticizing the GCR that “95% of the SBC’s receipts” go to missions, relief efforts, theological education and church planting. He says that this budget structure keeps “us focused on the main thing.” But, the statistic is not exactly accurate. What the EC never seems to point out is that this is the percentage giving NOT of CP monies that the churches give but rather of the money that actually makes it to the national convention after the state conventions take their cut, which in most states is over 60%. In a state like Kentucky only 18% of CP money gets to the mission field. Southern Baptists are told that our money goes to the things we want emphasized, but this is not the whole truth, and the EC seems happy to perpetuate this system in which state conventions receive most of the money.

The main question emerging from these events is, “who is going to hold the EC accountable?” The EC and its leadership are accountable to the churches, but the trustees are the ones entrusted by the convention with this responsibility. Trustees need to walk a fine line between micro-managing denominational leaders and giving them Cart Blanche. When it is necessary to take action though, trustees must have the wherewithal to do so. Many are asking the question “is it time for the trustees to act?”


Comments 0

  1. Thanks for the article. I do have one question though: What do most state conventions do with the money they keep? Aren’t they also spending it on church planting and evangelistic efforts? I don’t know of any state convention that’s just throwing money away. Are you asking all of it to go through NAMB and IMB and then they decide which states get the money back? After all, NAMB sends money to the state conventions for church planting, etc. Not sure what the problem is there?

  2. I don’t care to comment on the scandal, but the point of the reform is this: younger guys like me would rather give our money to individual missionaries than to the Cooperative Program. I love the Convention, but I know for sure that the individual missionaries I support use the money well. When I give to the CP, I never have the greatest sensation that my money is benefiting the Kingdom. If that’s how young pastors feel, how must other youngsters, who don’t even like denominations in the first place, feel? The people need to know that their gifts are doing more than satisfying their consciences, or else I’ll have no good reason to tell my church to give. Neither will my seminary buddies. And, in forty years, we’ll have a crippled mission structure because churches chose to give to individual missionaries instead.

  3. Concerning point #5:

    It is both the nature and the downfall of bureaucracy to want to maintain the status quo. I hope that the GCR task force takes a good and balanced look (not “we hate state conventions” nor “ignore the state exec behind the curtain…”) and I plan to (sometime this summer) write them to tell them my perspective which, being that I am not a denominational leader, will be quickly responded to with a kindly-worded message and summarily ignored.

    That is why I made the motion I did at Louisville: to move the Convention in the right direction (transparency and accountability), which I know, in the words of Dr. Akin, “will take a long time to turn, but as long as it is turning in the right way, I’m still on board”.

    My skeptical/cynical side says that all 5 issues are connected…the entity boards have become “smoke-filled backrooms” where all the politics take place. Want to know what’s going on? Get elected as a trustee (or get your operative in there).

    What we need is to FEEL like the trustees listen to us…even if they don’t…not FEEL like they’re not listening, when I think that most do (to some extent). We need to run this organization like a (perfect) church family, not a political party (I’ve been watching a lot of “The West Wing”…)

  4. All I can say is “YES…it is time for the trustees to act!!!!” It has been time for a lot of people to act within the SBC. This is clearly a work of Satan. What would Satan love to do more than anything? Cause conflict within the church. This situation has opened the door for Satan to cause conflict within the SBC and when lost people see this it will make them question whether or not they want a relationship with Christ. To me this is an example of why God has commanded us to purge the evil from among us. If we allow this to continue we will continue to cause people to lose heart in the SBC and the Christian faith. The trustees need to demand that either Dr Chapman man up and give an account for what has happened. If he continues to refuse to give that account then all members of the SBC along with the trustees need to ask for his resignation. He needs to understand that he can either bring the truth forward now or God will later. My last thought is that Satan hates the GCR because it will help us to carry forth the Gospel. This action happened for a reason. Yes we have a right to be upset over this but our greatest tools to combat this blow from Satan is prayer to our Lord and the courage to keep fightest against Satan with the word of God. Also I ask that no matter what anybody’s opinion is of what should happen let’s all pray for the Logan family, Dr Chapman, the SBC, the trustees and that the will of our Lord and Savior be done through this.

  5. I have been wondering something along the lines of this controversy.

    I’m wondering if state convention leadership might look less favorably upon pastor’s in their state who support the GCR task force? What potential (negative) affect with the GCR task force have on the relationships between state convention leaders and local pastors?

    I ask this with the presupposition that most state convention leaders are probably not looking forward to the task force. Maybe my assumptions are wrong and I hope they are, but it remains to be seen what will happen along the way.

  6. Most of these two articles address legitimate questions, but I really question what seems to be a heavy reliance on the “twitterverse” in #3. The very nature of twitter makes it necessary to “read between the 140 characters” instead of having a real conversation. It also gives the appearance that there are no answers being given just because you aren’t following the people giving answers or because (gasp) the people with answers don’t use twitter. What you end up getting is a real rumor instead of real news. People who use twitter thoughtfully, as Dr. Mohler does, are few and far between.

    Also the criticisms in #5 should not be directed at Dr. Chapman. He can only be called responsible for what money the national convention receives. If you want a GCR at the state level, then go make a motion at the state level. Complain all you want about how national level money is handled, but state issues have to be raised in each state not with Dr. Chapman.

  7. Nathan,

    Thanks for taking time to read the article and ask a question about it. Here’s what I’d respond. The article does not call for no money to go to the states or even a blowing up of the current CP structure. All the article says is that the amount the states keep is way too much and the amount sent on is far too little.

    What do the states do with the money they keep? I guess you’d have to look at each state’s budget to determine that. Some do church planting and evangelism as well as training events, children’s homes, colleges, etc. Some give more money to institutions that have liberal/moderate faculty members than to international missions (Kentucky being one).

    The issue with the status quo is not that states shouldn’t get money; rather, it is a question of NEED. For instance, my state kentucky. Does a state with 2,400 local churches that can engage their state/local region in evangelism and missions NEED 20+ MILLION dollars of CP money to do more evangelism and church planting when there are billions (3.4) with little to no access to the gospel and very few churches throughout the world?!

    So, we are not saying that state conventions don’t engage in great ministries that we love. Rather, we are asking if more money needs to stay in the places where there are already plenty of churches when there are billions in darkness.

  8. Hi. I don’t have any knowledge about the main topic of this post but since Kentucky was mentioned in the fifth point, I did want to update everyone about missions giving from that state. I serve as communications director for the Kentucky Baptist Convention and am very proud of the way Kentucky Baptists are hard at work to fulfill the Great Commission both across the street and around the world.

    I obviously can’t speak for all state conventions but here in Kentucky we see the Great Commission Resurgence discussion as a positive and healthy one. Discussing the division of Cooperative Program resources is a completely legitimate and important process and we are excited that people are talking about ways Baptists can be more effective in sharing the Gospel. After all, that what all of us, as Christians, need to be about.

    In Kentucky, Cooperative Program gifts through the churches are basically divided three ways. The largest piece of the pie (just over 37 percent) goes to Southern Baptist Convention causes followed by a slightly smaller slice (36.5 percent) that goes to the Kentucky Baptist Mission Board for its work. Then the smallest piece of the pie (26.4 percent) goes to Christian education and KBC entities such as our children’s ministries, camps, foundation, etc.

    In addition to supporting SBC mission causes through the CP, Kentucky churches are also supporting the International Mission Board and North American Mission Board through the special offerings. The Lottie Moon Christmas Offering from Kentucky was nearly $4.5 million this past year and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering was almost $2 million which effectively doubles what the SBC mission boards receive from Kentucky churches. Total giving from the churches in Kentucky shows a division of 48 percent for SBC causes and 52 percent for Kentucky missions and ministry causes. (These numbers are based on our 2007-08 audit.)

    I know this response probably just scratches the surface in terms of the many questions people have about the state conventions, funding sources, etc. but our convention is completely open to sharing about the work here. Dr. Bill Mackey, the executive director of the KBC, recently wrote a post about his support for the Great Commission Task Force on his blog Partners in the Mission ( and I’ve just started a new blog called Great Commission Kentucky ( that I’ll use to take readers through the nuts and bolts of how Kentucky churches and the state convention work. (This latter blog has literally just been set up so give me a little time to start getting the meatier material out there.)

  9. Josh,

    Thank you for responding and raising your concerns. As far the Twitterverse I agree mostly with your comments. However, Ronnie gives links to the actual new articles that are giving “answers” to this issue (except for the recent response of Pres Johnny Hunt). It just is the case that there are not a LOT of answers being given. The reference to the Twitterverse is NOT in a sense to say that it is news reporting but rather as an example of the ways people are responding to the news stories (or lack thereof). They are upset because there are NO answers being given, at least no real answers. They are not reporting rumors or saying that they are giving the news. They are just personal reactions.

    Also, #5 does not seem to be directed at Dr. Chapman or the EC in terms of saying that he is responsible for how the states give money to the national CP. Rather, it says that he keeps providing only part of the picture of how money is given and allocated and thus giving essentially false information. I agree wholeheartedly with your call for us to get involved at the state level. Absolutely!!

    Thanks again for your response.

  10. Robert,

    Thank you for your time, response and information. I look forward to checking out these blog sites. I am glad that the KBC and Dr. Mackey are positive about the GCR discussion. I pray that the discussion is a positive and healthy one both at the national and state levels, and that it results in all of us being more faithful in the Great Commission. Wouldn’t that be awesome? It is great to evaluate the giving and allocating of resources to make sure we are doing these things wisely. I have a few questions that you might be able to answer as the communications director for the KBC.

    1. Is it true that 63% of CP money that the 2400 churches in KY give is kept in the state of Kentucky and only 37% goes on to national causes like international missions, NAMB, seminaries, etc?

    2. When you mention the special offerings like Lottie and Annie is that money that the KBC is giving to those offerings that go directly to national/international mission causes? Or is that money that Kentucky churches give directly to those causes? If the latter, then are churches giving individually in those special offerings the same amount to missions as the KBC is?

    3. What is the breakdown that shows that 48% of total giving from KY churches goes to SBC causes and 52% for KY? Is that just CP and Lottie/Annie combined to come up with that number?

    I look forward to reading your answers and your blog to understand how things work in the state better? Thanks again,


  11. To all, Thanks for commenting!


    I agree completely with Jon’s explanation of your question. I hope this helps give you an idea of what we are getting at. Originally, the state conventions were to keep 50% of the money and send 50% on. There are currently only 2 states who do this (Texas and Virginia). Since the GCR, others are now striving to make this adjustment.

    Many states are made up of several (that’s being soft) local associations that have full-time guys working at every level, who are paid with CP dollars. So there are full-time guys working to serve pastors and churches in areas of the state where there are already plenty of pastors and churches (I hope that’s a clear sentence). I suggest that we need to do some restructuring so that pastors and churches can work more closely together and cut out the middle man. Quite frankly, we probably need to work on throttling back on the local associations and go more toward city associations. I believe every job should be under investigation. Could you imagine the amount of money that would go toward missions if three $40,000 jobs were cut out in each of the fifty states? That’s an extra 2 million dollars!

    Now I’m not saying we go on a firing rampage. I’m just suggesting we look at the technology of the 21st century and start restructuring for the next 100 years. With the GCR in full force, we hope state conventions will take serious this call to examine.


    I understand your frustration but don’t ever quit giving to the CP. There is hope. CP money was used to help you get through seminary. Pray for reform in the CP and the Convention. Be a part of the solution instead of turning away.


    I once again agree with Jon. Twitter just allows people to respond openly about their thoughts on the matter. I’m thankful that most of what I read was sorrowful for the Logan family. Yes, there were many who were upset with Logan’s resignation, but once again, this is an avenue to show personal reflection.


    Thank you for reading our blog and for commenting. As a KY pastor, resident, and tither, I’d love to know the answers to Jon’s questions as well. Thanks for being open to walking us through the nuts and bolts!

  12. Jon,

    Thanks for the great questions. Those are exactly the kinds of nuts and bolts things I want to share in the new Great Commission Kentucky blog ( so if you don’t mind, I’m going to use those as the basis for some of my first posts there rather than just tack them on to this post about the Clark Logan situation. It will probably be later tomorrow before I can have time to write but I’ll make sure I post a link here or duplicate the response here or whatever is appropriate so that everyone following this conversation can see it.

  13. I have no inside information on the Clark Logan situation and honestly, the situation with MC’s rant at the SBC, the resignation and his general opposition to the GCR looks very bad on his part no matter what the truth is.

    However, playing the devil’s advocate, has anyone given any consideration to the fact that MC might actually be withholding the details for Clark Logan’s sake? Obviously, he was not asked to resign for unethical or immoral behavior But could their be a situation where it would be best for all of us NOT to know what happened in order to protect Clark Logan and his family? If so, then there would be a lot of SBC guys who are berating an undeserving man and could end up with egg on their face.

    If this is over a theological/political agenda then I will be the first to call for appropriate measures to be taken. I agree that there needs to be some sort of accountability. I have emailed my own EC representative with concerns over this situation and voiced that very opinion.

    I hope this provokes some thoughts.

  14. Just a few words to clarify some points. 1. Associational missions are NOT funded through Cooperative Program gifts. Churches in each association fund their mutual work separate from CP. Now THERE is a restructuring directors of missions would appreciate: CP funds going there first, then to state, then to national and international ministries.
    2. The sentiment above of Steve Helms concerns me if he represents more people than those gathered around his dinner table. When he says, “God has commanded us to purge the evil from among us,” his context says he is talking about Christian brothers with whom he currently disagrees about a specific issue. There are no “evil” characters in this drama. There were no “evil” characters in the three decades of “conservative resurgence.” But brothers went unchallenged as they waved their Bibles and implied that other brothers did not believe it, thus using the Bible to divide rather than unite. If the Great Commission Resurgence adopts the language or attitude demonstrated by Steve’s “purge the evil from among us” statement, it is doomed.
    3. Several statements in the comments indicate writers are unfamiliar with the funding system of Baptist work. I suggest some reearch before you get too deep into criticism. I’m not saying don’t criticize, don’t advocate for change. Just make sure you know the way things are before you assume they are wrong and before suggesting a change. If not, the change you suggest might actually be the way it is already done.

  15. Norman, in regards to your number 3 comment. Which writers are you talking about? Other than the DOM thing what is another example of confusion over thr system?



  16. Robert,

    thanks for making this available. I look forward to reading the other parts and seeing more closely how kbc budget works.

    So, from looking at the allocation you have given, 63% goes to ‘kentucky’ causes and 37 to national/international causes?


  17. I want to apologize for parts of my previous post. Under no circumstance do I wish to divide the church. Some of the comments I made were made out of fustration about the situation at hand. Some of the wording I used was a little harsh. After careful consideration and prayer I would like to say that I disagree with any state convention or church or any other organization keeping funds that should be or are meant to be allocated to church planting or missions whether locally or abroad. I do not mean to disrespect anybody that is caught up in this issue. I do feel that there are some accountability issues that need to be dealt with. I also believe that as long as money that is suppose to be going to church planting and missions is being sent is hurting the Gospel of Christ. The less resources that are being sent into the world for missions the less people will hear the Gospel. I also believe that Christians need to unite and work together for missions, not work apart from each other.

    If any of my previous comments upset or offended anyone I do apologize. I think the guys here at Baptist21 are doing a great job and I thank you for that. For now on you have my promise that I will pray first before speaking. Again I am sorry.

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