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OPINION

CP: 2.10% below previous year's pace

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--Year-to-date contributions to Southern Baptist national and international missions and ministries received by the SBC Executive Committee are 2.10 percent below the same time frame last year, according to a news release from SBC Executive Committee President and Chief Executive Officer Frank Page. The total includes receipts from state conventions and fellowships, churches and individuals for distribution according to the 2010-11 SBC Cooperative Program Allocation Budget.
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As of Aug. 31, gifts received by the Executive Committee for distribution through the Cooperative Program Allocation Budget totaled $174,475,554.89, or $3,742,859.11 behind the $178,218,414.00 received at the end of August 2010.

"A number of our states hard hit by the economic crisis continue to reel under massive unemployment and under-employment," Page said. "In spite of their hardships, God's people continue to give in the spirit of the Macedonian believers Paul praised in 2 Corinthians 8:2." The verse states, "that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality." Page voiced gratitude for "the continued faithfulness of Southern Baptists to support the ministries of their churches, their respective state conventions and the ministries and missions causes of the SBC through the Cooperative Program."

Designated giving of $186,318,000.89 for the same year-to-date period is 0.53 percent, or $990,388.11, below gifts of $187,308,389.00 received at this point last year.

Monthly CP allocation receipts for SBC work totaled $14,377,245.81 while designated gifts received last month amounted to $5,875,925.30.

Month-to-month swings reflect a number of factors, including the timing of receipts from state conventions. The end-of-month total represents money received by close of business on the last business day of each month.

For the SBC Cooperative Program Allocation Budget, the year-to-date total of $174,475,554.89 is 95.25 percent of the $183,170,249.33 budgeted to support Southern Baptist ministries globally and across North America. The SBC operates on an Oct. 1-Sept. 30 fiscal year.

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The Cooperative Program is Southern Baptists' method of supporting missions and ministry efforts of state conventions and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Designated contributions include the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions, the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions, Southern Baptist World Hunger Fund and other special gifts.

State and regional conventions retain a portion of church contributions to the Southern Baptist Convention Cooperative Program to support work in their respective areas and forward a percentage to Southern Baptist national and international causes. The percentage of distribution is at the discretion of each state or regional convention.

Compiled by Baptist Press staff.

Copyright (c) 2011 Southern Baptist Convention, Baptist Press www.BPNews.net

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