May 25th, 2011 at 1:11 pm
DALLAS – Through the first quarter of 2011, gifts to missions through the Texas Baptist Cooperative Program – the primary giving channel of Texas Baptists – are running at 98.9 percent of the convention’s budget.
Texas Baptists Treasurer Jill Larsen said it appears giving to Texas CP has leveled off after several years of decline related to the economic recession. Gifts through Texas CP are running at a 99.7 percent of last year’s giving. Giving through Texas CP provides the primary support for the convention’s ministries, including church-starting efforts, Baptist Student Ministries, evangelistic outreaches and benevolence work.
“While we continue to watch CP giving closely, it appears that CP has stabilized after declining during the severe recession,” Larsen said. “BGCT staff continues to monitor expenditures closely.”
Because giving is stable and convention staff members have been able to curb spending to 90.9 percent of the budget through the first quarter, the convention has not needed to access any of the reserve funds the BGCT Executive Board voted to allow them to use if needed, Larsen said.
The convention holds many events throughout the summer and into the early fall, creating a need for increased spending, Larsen noted, but staff are doing well at living within their budgets. Texas Baptists staff members are excited by the giving stabilization and are focusing on reaching people for Christ.
“I’ve been here seven years,” Larsen said. “I think staff morale is as high as it’s been since I’ve been here.”