How Important is the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions?

(THIS IS AN UPDATED AND CORRECTED POST)

How Important is the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions?

Someone asked me that question a few days ago so I thought I would try and put in perspective the importance and value of this annual offering we take this time of the year.  Last year Grace Baptist Church gave $13,075 to the LMCO.  Every penny of this went to the mission field.  It went to buy specific things that the missionaries need to minister in a foreign country.  Many of them, like people we know, minister in lands that are not friendly to the Gospel

Most Baptists are people who believe in international, as well as home missions.  We are very conscious that our Lord gave His commission to the church to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth.  At Grace we not only give to mission offerings but we personally are committed to taking the Gospel, not just sending others.  Thus we have adopted the  Chancay River Valley in the Andes Mountains of Peru and we expend money, in addition to LMCO and Cooperative Program, to reach these people with the Gospel.

The importance, indeed the urgency, of the LMCO becomes even more apparent when you realize just how little of our Cooperative Program money gets to the International Mission Board.  And of that which does get there a significant portion goes to administration stateside.  But ALL of the LMCO goes to the international field.

So you may ask, how much of our CP dollars actually get to the International Mission Board (IMB)?  This year we will give about $68,762 to the Cooperative Program.  It is sent to the Kentucky Baptist Convention in Louisville where it is split with the Southern Baptist Convention.  The KBC keeps 63% of our money and sends 37% on to the SBC.  That means $43,320.06 stays in Kentucky and $$25,441.94 goes to Nashville.  There the budget for the SBC is administered.  The IMB gets 50% of the SBC budget. So that means that 50% of our $25,441.94 goes to the IMB.  That is a total of $12,720.97.

The LMCO gives us a chance to more than double the money we send throughout the year to reach the nations with the Gospel.

This past summer at the annual meeting of the SBC, President Johnny Hunt appointed a Great Commission Resurgence Task Force.  They are charged with examining how we are spending our money as Southern Baptists and how we can get more to actually go to missions.  In my humble opinion, it is about time!!  We have some bureaucracies that will rival the Federal government for waste and inefficiency.

Don’t get me wrong . . . I love the Southern Baptist Convention.  I believe that we do missions better than most.  I believe we have a good system in place for doing missions in the Cooperative Program.  But I do think we need to do a better job.

So you see the LMCO is indeed very, very important in the cause of International missions.  So as we come to this time of year, and the standard Baptist joke is, “Are we ever going to pay Lottie Moon off?”  The answer is . . . Not until Christ returns or the nations are reached with the Gospel.  Pray and give above your tithe this Christmas season, that the nations may hear about our Lord Jesus Christ.