DAVIS—The approval of a 2016 Cooperative Program (CP) objective of $24.5 million, a proposed 2016 financial plan, extension of the Convention’s partnership with Guerrero, Mexico and the establishment of a three-year partnership with the Union of Baptist Churches in Latvia highlighted the Sept. 22 meeting of the Board of Directors of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma (BGCO).

Meeting in the Raymond A. Young Tabernacle as construction continued on the adjacent Thompson Family Lodge and Mathena Family Event Center at Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center, the Board also took “an historic step,” said Executive Director-treasurer Anthony L. Jordan by approving an amendment to Article II of the BGCO Constitution, which states: “Section 3. Statement of Faith. The convention declares the Bible as the foundation for its faith and practice, and affirms as its confession of faith the Baptist Faith and Message, as revised and adopted in 2000 by the Southern Baptist Convention, as the doctrinal parameter for its cooperative work.”

Jordan said, “In 110 years, we have never had a statement of faith as a convention. I made it very plain during discussions that this is related to the work of the staff and the ministries of the convention. It does not apply to churches who affiliate with the convention,” he said.

“This is to give parameters to what we do—our staff, our ministries—through the convention.”

The 2016 CP objective is $1 million below the $25.5 million objective approved for 2015—which was reduced later to $25.4 million—and will be distributed 40 percent to the  Southern Baptist Convention, 15.7 percent to BGCO affiliates and 44.3 percent  to the BGCO.

/// In other business, the Board:

• Ratified an insurance settlement in the amount of $182,065.80 for 17 BGCO-owned vehicles damaged by flooding at Falls Creek this summer.

• Ratified a resolution by the Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children (OBHC) Board of Trustees to build a Hope Pregnancy Center in the Kingston Shopping Center at Danforth and Bryant in Edmond.

• Authorized an $11.75 million  Baptist Village Communities (BVC) capital fund raising campaign for improvements at its campuses in Broken Arrow, Cleveland, Hugo, Okmulgee and Owasso.

• Affirmed a resolution an agreement of cooperation between the BGCO and her affiliates, BVC, OBHC, Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU) and the Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma for estate planning efforts.

• Approved a new BGCO External Communications Policy, which sets guidelines for all external communications on behalf of the BGCO, including interaction with media and social media accounts.

• Approved Oklahoma City, Quail Springs as the site for the 2016 Annual Meeting, Nov. 14-15.

The Board also heard a report from Audit Committee Chairman Chip Winter, a member of Edmond, First, who stated that all BGCO and affiliate audits received unqualified opinions. The Board also heard reports from the affiliate presidents, including new OBHC president-elect Greg McNeece, and from Jordan, who told the Board that personal evangelism will be the focus of this year’s annual meeting, Nov. 9-10 at Oklahoma City, Southern Hills.