National & World
Northminster Missions Support (National and World Baptist Missions)
Listed below are organizations supported by Northminster’s National and World Baptist Missions giving and other Baptist institutions receiving missions budget funds.
Included are organizations listed in Northminster’s church covenant as well as organizations for which the Denominational Relations Committee is responsible for recommending the allocation of financial resources.
Metro Baptist Association
The Metro Baptist Association is composed of cooperating Baptist churches in Hinds and Madison Counties. This coordinating and support organization works with local congregations in the strengthening of churches, staff and ministries. Activities include leadership training, conferences, new church support, social services provided through the Crestwood Baptist Center on Bailey Avenue, and youth camps and recreation leagues.
Mississippi Baptist Convention
The Mississippi Baptist Convention is a statewide organization of Baptists churches which seeks to promote missions, education and church support. First organized in 1824, it holds its annual meeting in Jackson each November. Agencies of the Mississippi Baptist Convention include the Mississippi Baptist Foundation, the Mississippi Christian Action Commission, the Mississippi Historical Commission, and its weekly journal, The Baptist Record. Affiliated institutions include Blue Mountain College, Mississippi College, William Carey College and the Mississippi Baptist Health Care System.
Southern Baptist Convention
The Southern Baptist Convention was founded in 1845 to provide a general organization for Baptists to promote Christian missions and education, provide Christian theological training, and support social ministries. The SBC has experienced major conflicts over theology and related matters in 1925, 1963 and 1986 and many minor conflicts in between. Prior to 1990, the Northminster congregation generally sent a full allotment of messengers to the annual meeting of the SBC and participated in giving to its Cooperative program. Since 1990, the church has not supported the SBC Cooperative Program financially or sent messengers to the annual meeting, although individual members of Northminster are free to designate their giving to the Cooperative Program, and some do.
Baptist World Alliance
The Baptist World Alliance [www.bwanet.org] was founded in 1905 to bring Baptists together across the world in a cooperative effort to promote fellowship, meet human needs, lead in evangelism, and work for justice. Recent priorities for the BWA include youth work, evangelism training, aid in developing countries, famine relief, support of religious liberty, and opposition to land mines.
The Alliance of Baptists
The Alliance of Baptists [www.allianceofbaptists.org] was organized in 1987 as a response of the controversy within the SBC. The Alliance is supported by individuals and churches dedicated to the preservation of historic Baptist principles, freedoms, and traditions, and to the expression of ministry through cooperative relationships with other Baptist bodies and the larger Christian community. It conducts an annual convocation and encourages missions and education efforts, including regular support to the Baptist Joint Committee, Baptist Women in Ministry, Habitat for Humanity, and the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond.
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship
The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship [www.thefellowship.info] was organized in May 1991 by Baptists seeking new ways to work together. It holds an annual meeting in late June. CBF priorities include performing global missions efforts in a world without borders; championing Baptist principles of faith and practice; affirming our diversity as a gift of God; networking Baptist churches and individuals for cooperation, encouragement and exchange of ideas and information; empowering churches through resources more than programs; and emphasizing strategic partnerships more than owning institutions. In July 2003 the CBF became a member body of the Baptist World Alliance.
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Mississippi
The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of Mississippi [www.cbfms.org] was organized in 1992 as an autonomous Baptist organization comprised of individuals and churches throughout the state. Through fall and spring general meetings, a quarterly newsletter and regional gatherings, CBF of MS provides community and fellowship; information about the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship; opportunities to hear CBF missionaries on furlough; educational workshops; volunteer missions opportunities in Tchula, Mississippi and other locations; and a retired ministers network.
Associated Baptist Press
Associated Baptist Press [www.abpnews.com] is an autonomous news service for Baptists committed to report the news fairly and with integrity. Organized in September 1990, ABP serves as a key source of news and information about contemporary religious matters, both for Baptist publications and for many major daily newspapers throughout the country. In 2005, ABP, together with the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty and Baptists Today, will launch the First Freedoms Project, a cooperative effort with congregations to celebrate and support a free press and religious liberty.
Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty
Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty [www.bjconline.org] was formed in 1936 to enunciate, commend and defend the historic Baptist principle of religious freedom with particular application to the separation of church and state as embodied in the Constitution of the United States. The mission of the BJC is to protect, uphold and defend the significant and historical Baptist distinctive of a free church in a free state. BJC’s stated reasons for existence are explicit commitment to religious liberty, unwavering dedication to church-state separation, and determined resistance to any and all attempts to violate these principles. BJC’s primary activities include lobbying Congress concerning issues of religious liberty and providing information through position papers, a newsletter and a website. In 2004 the BJC changed its name from Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs to Baptist Joint Committee on Religious Liberty to reflect with more specificity the nature of BJC’s core mission.
Baptists Today [www.baptiststoday.org] began as SBC Today, an autonomous news publication formed in March 1983 to inform moderate Baptists about events arising out of the controversy within the SBC. Baptists Today has since revised and broadened its mission statement and now seeks to provide a nationally circulated publication of news and opinions of, by and for Baptists and other persons interested in news of various Baptist groups and religious news in general.
Baptist Women in Ministry
Baptist Women in Ministry, founded in July 1983, provides education, support, spiritual renewal and fellowship in affirming and encouraging women as vocational and lay ministers of the Gospel. In practice, the organization looks beyond gender and supports ministers of the Gospel, giving special attention to women as they seek to fulfill God’s call in ministry. BWIM publishes a newsletter and contributes toward internships and educational stipends for female students gaining a ministerial education.
The Divinity School at Wake Forest University
Several years ago, as a response to changes in Baptist Seminaries operated by the SBC and a need perceived by some Baptists for alternatives for training of Baptist ministers, Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, announced plans to open a divinity school to offer post-graduate degrees in divinity studies. The Divinity School seeks students who demonstrate exceptional promise for the ministry, strong potential for graduate level work and clear commitment to Christian vocation. In 2002, Wake Forest awarded degrees to its first class, and approximately 93 students are now enrolled. Northminster Associate Pastors Amy Joyner and Tripp Martin are both graduates of the Divinity School at Wake Forest University.
McAfee School of Theology at Mercer University
The Board of Mercer University voted in 1994 to establish a graduate theology school in Atlanta, Georgia in part as a response to changes in Baptist seminaries operated by the SBC. The McAfee School of Theology opened in 1996 with 40 students, offering a program emphasizing balance in theological education between academics and local church ministry. Approximately 211 students are now enrolled. Presently the school offers the master of divinity degree, a combined master of divinity and master of business administration, master of divinity and master of science in counseling, and also a doctor of ministry degree. The school also hopes to open a resource center for church leaders. Tripp Martin is currently pursuing his Doctorate of Ministry at McAfee.
Central Baptist Theological Seminary
Central Baptist Theological Seminary in Shawnee, Kansas has been in existence for over 100 years. Originally established by the American Baptist Churches USA, it now serves both ABC and CBF affiliations. With 130 students, the seminary has provided an alternative for the training of Baptist ministers as the SBC seminaries have undergone changes. Longtime Northminster member Clark Hensley was an alumnus of Central.
George W. Truett Theological Seminary at Baylor University
George W. Truett Theological Seminary at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, was chartered in 1991 and began admitting students in 1994. It now has 385 students pursuing Master of Divinity degrees with concentrations in theology, Christian education, counseling, gerontology, global missions and music or Master of Theological Studies or Doctor of Ministry. The degree program includes a common core of study focused on scripture, theology, leadership, proclamation, worship and pastoral care. Students must complete Lifelong Learning credits by participation in conferences, mission practicum and writing/research.
The Baptist House of Studies at Duke University
The Baptist House of Studies at Duke University is, in effect, a seminary within a seminary. Duke Divinity School is both a school of the United Methodist Church and of Duke University. The Baptist House offers a certificate in Baptist studies, and one year of Baptist history and polity are required–most Baptist seminaries only require one semester. This combination of keen attention to Baptist history and polity with a heavy exposure to students and professors from many other Christian traditions allows Baptist students to both sharpen and broaden their Baptist identity. There are presently approximately 100 students in the Baptist House of Studies program. In addition to visiting Baptist faculty who teach the courses in Baptist history and policy, there are several Baptist professors on the full-time faculty.
Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond
Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond is a distinctively Baptist seminary founded in 1991 as a response to changes in Baptist seminaries operated by the SBC. BTSR operates in an ecumenical consortium with American Baptist and Presbyterian seminaries in Richmond, Virginia. It has grown from its founding class of 32 to its present size of 333 students. BTSR offers four degree options: Master of Divinity, Master in Christian Education, Master of Social Work and Doctor of Ministry.
Advent Spirituality Center
Advent Spirituality Center [www.adventcenter.org], which began as A Gathering of Baptists Interested in Spirituality, sponsors an annual conference at Mars Hill College in North Carolina, where Baptists meet to discuss their experiences with the contemporary spirituality movement. The Gathering grew out of a conversation between Dr. Glenn Hinson of the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond and Tom Turner of Pilgrims Rest Retreat Center in Greenville, South Carolina about the need for Baptist spirituality to be acknowledged and embraced. Since its first meeting in 1994, the Gathering has led to formation of the Five-Day Academy for Christian Spirituality, the Advent Spirituality Center, and the Baptist Spiritual Directors Retreat. Since 2002, the Advent Spirituality Center’s annual conference has become known as the E. Glenn Hinson Spiritual Formation Institute.
Christian Ethics Today Foundation
Christian Ethics Today Foundation [www.christianethicstoday.com]bears witness to the relevance of the Christian gospel addressing current ethical issues. Christian Ethics Today, based near Austin, Texas, publishes a bimonthly ethics journal which maintains an emphasis on applied Christianity, biblical truth, theological insight, historical perspective and the divine imperative to love God with our whole hearts and our neighbors as ourselves.