Fixing up the Nut House…

Paige and Dorothy Patterson have nearly quadrupled the value of Pecan Manor, the Southwestern presidential home, and increased the square footage to 8,757 sq.ft. In the meantime, houses on the same street have increased in value by 1.88%.

Or maybe the Patmos Evangelistic Association home office has undergone a major expansion.

Just for a reference, please consider the following:

Academy award-winning actress Helen Mirren’s home — 6,699 sq.ft.

Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher’s love nest — 6,716 sq.ft.

Grammy award winning vocalist Smokey Robinson — 4420 sq.ft.

Martha Stewart’s Turkey Hill Farm — 3,168 sq.ft.

Mafia don Al Capone’s final estate — 3,682 sq.ft.

Childhood home of Jaqueline Kennedy Onassis — 8500 sq.ft.

Shock-jock Howard Stern’s Southampton digs — 8500 sq.ft.

Britney Spears Tuscan-style mansion — 7,453 sq.ft.

Billionaire mogul Kirk Kerkorian’s Beverly Hills palace — 8402 sq.ft.

Of course, we hope that the Pattersons at least let those student workers use straw to make the bricks…

Rules for Radicals, Pt. 10.

“The mental shadowboxing on the subject of means and ends is typical of those who are the observers and not the actors in the battlefields of life…The organizer, the revolutionist, the activist or call him what you will, who is committed to a free and open society is in that commitment anchored to a complex of high values. These values include the basic morals of all organized religions; their base is the preciousness of human life. These values include freedom, equality, justice, peace, the right to dissent, the values that were the banners of hope and yearning of all revolutions of men, whether the French Revolution’s ‘Liberty, Fraternity, Equality,’ the Russians’ ‘Bread and Peace,’ the brave Spanish people’s ‘Better to die on your feet than to live on your knees,’ or our Revolution’s ‘No taxation without representation.’ They include the values in our own Bill of Rights. If a state voted to keep blacks out, and claimed justification by virtue of the ‘democratic process,’ then this violation of the value of equality would have converted democracy into a prostitute. Democracy is not an end; it is the best political means available toward the achievement of these values.”

Saul Alinsky concludes his discussion of means and ends by capturing the motivation behind employing a particular means for a particular end. If a revolution would be successful, it must be preceded by a reformation. The way a man thinks about his own soul and the value of community and the social order must undergo reflective assessment. The way he thinks about his king or his congress must be controlled by the highest ideals of human life. In other words, he must come to love the polis more than the politician. And the revolutionary must frame his revolution in terms that appeal to a man’s inner sense of justice.

This is how the past sixteen months of denominational struggle began. At the end of November 2005, the International Mission Board approved two new policies to govern the appointment of Southern Baptist missionaries. These policies would have passed with little notice if it had not been for one man, a lone dissenter, Wade Burleson, and his accursed blog. Wade began articulating for Southern Baptists the danger of applying such restrictive theological parameters to our kingdom work. In essence, he fired the shot heard ’round the convention.

I was not originally drawn into this fight because of the new policies. Trying to argue doctrine among Southern Baptists is like trying to explain a logarithm. The attention span of our convention when it comes to nuanced theological discussion is about as long as Richard Land’s old combover. Well, maybe a little shorter, but you get the point.

Debating doctrine on these finer points of theology or philosophy ends up as a point-counter point of scripture quotation, mixed with a few historical references and a string of supporting commentaries. It gets confusing and the people get tired.

But talk about “autonomy” to Southern Baptists, and their ears perk up even though the historical and exegetical pulp with which to construct a doctrine of “autonomy” is thin indeed. And for all the reticence of the current regime to talk about “priesthood” or “liberty,” these themes will strike a resonant chord in the hearts of Southern Baptists until the eschaton.

Which is why the debate over tongues must be framed in terms of the “freedom” to worship and pray without coercion or retribution. And why the baptism policies must be refuted because they are restrictive upon autonomous churches, not because Baptists should start affirming Arminian baptism.

It’s why Paige Patterson’s decision to censor Dwight McKissic caught fire…not because the majority of Southern Baptists want to have a private prayer language, but because they believe a man should be free behind the pulpit to preach without some pope or prelate telling him what he can and cannot say.

And it’s why $90 Million boondoggle over at Southwestern made headlines. Not because Southern Baptists don’t think Southwestern trustees have the sense to oversee the school’s endowment, but because the secrecy of the whole thing, and the apparent hypocrisy involved in the investment strategy, raised enough ire to reverse the course.

And it’s why Sheri Klouda will get a few hundred thousand dollars. Not because Southern Baptists believe women should be teaching men in schools of theology. But because an injustice was done to a woman who was made certain assurances that were broken.

And it’s why Paige Patterson will retire from Southwestern very soon. Not because Southern Baptists have turned their back on inerrancy. But because little old ladies in Sunday School classes don’t like their widow’s mite being spent on taxidermy.

At every turn, the “revolutionaries” of the convention’s imminent reformation have framed their arguments in terms that appeal to Southern Baptists. They are for church autonomy, not denominational hierarchy. They are for scriptural sufficiency, not confessional uniformity. They have placed their priorities on the Kingdom, rather than the kingdom. They believe the bureaucracy should serve the churches, not the other way around.

These principles of Southern Baptist cooperation will keep gaining steam, and our convention will begin to refocus and reform. One year ago, Wade Burleson, Marty Duren, and I were hosting conference calls by the bushel to get people talking about the problem. What was written on a few blogs has framed the discussion at major conferences. Readership that started in the low hundreds has now surpassed five thousand a day.

What, then are the goals toward which Southern Baptists should strive? As I see it, they are at least seven:

1. A renewed commitment to the sufficiency of scripture and a generous confessional identity that allows for new partnerships and cooperative mission endeavors to supplant our provincial narcissism.

2. A revived heart for social justice, for ministry to the poor and oppressed, and a strategy for serving the “least of these” that safeguards the church from the compromises of the Social Gospel Movement that threatened a bold evangelistic witness in an earlier century.

3. A reduced bureaucracy that eliminates reduplication and administrative waste coupled with an institutional transparency never realized in Southern Baptist life.

4. A reaffirmation of the transforming power of the gospel to work into the cultures of the world like leaven, slowly yet surely bringing this kingdoms of the world to the Kingdom of our God and His Christ, while avoiding the empty promises of postmillenial theology.

5. A reclamation of the prophetic witness of the church to the state, marked by fewer American flags and Republican politicians gracing our annual sessions, more pictures of Richard Land on the Capitol steps than in the Oval Office, and Justice Sundays that actually address issues of justice rather than lobbying for Supreme Court nominees.

6. A rejection of the fundamentalist cannibalism that snipes at Ed Young, Jr. for hosting a conference with T.D. Jakes, or that attacks Rick Warren for his PEACE plan, or that assaults Ed Stetzer or Darrin Patrick for appropriating emergent church paradigms.

7. A retraction from our Southern-Anglo ethnocentrism that keeps our convention as white as a tractor pull, brought about by intentional efforts to elevate ethnic minorities to strategic positions of influence in the denomination. In other words, the time has come for Southern Baptists to have a Black serving as convention president, a Hispanic serving as a seminary president, and an Asian serving as president of one of our mission boards.

Coming later today…

…Rules for Radicals, Part Final. In the meantime, here are the links to the previous installments:

The Philosopher and the Provocateur, Pt. 1.

The Philosopher and the Provocateur, Pt. 2.

Rules for Radicals, Part One

Rules for Radicals, Part Two

Rules for Radicals, Part Three

Rules for Radicals, Part Four

Rules for Radicals, Part Five

Rules for Radicals, Part Six

Rules for Radicals, Part Seven

Rules for Radicals, Part Eight

Rules for Radicals, Part Nine

Where the bodies are buried…

Some people are fond of suggesting that we at Baptist Blogger “know where the bodies are buried.” To some degree, we readily admit, the accusation is founded. At the very least, we know where this one is buried, and we’re willing to pay one year’s tuition for any Southeastern Seminary student who can produce the disinterred casket and accompanying invoices at the San Antonio convention:

Patterson Tombstone

SBC Executive Committee Reflections…

I arrived in Nashville, TN, for the Executive Committee meeting on Saturday evening for a three-day stay at the Holiday Inn Express immediately adjacent to the Lifeway and ExComm buildings. Baptist Press has provided a good panoramic picture of the meeting; and our being the only blogger-of-note in attendance, your editor(s) here at Baptist Blogger have accepted the sole responsibility of providing color commentary. I will offer my thoughts in bullet format

  • Leadership — The Executive Committee Chairman, Bill Harrell, efficiently leads the meetings with courtesy to everyone involved. He began the meeting by recognizing those in the gallery, from State Convention presidents to journalists and even our beloved 2nd Vice President, Wiley Drake. Harrell has been assigned the unenviable position of guiding the ExComm board through some troubled waters. Like it or not, more Southern Baptists are looking to the Executive Committee for balance, fairness, and prudence. Earlier in his term, Harrell took a momentary detour from denominational sobriety, proving again that nothing unites Southern Baptists like a few insensible remarks from an otherwise sensible man. Everybody from Timmy Brister to Tom Ascol to Marty Duren to Bill Curtis weighed in with heavy artillery, and it appears that Harrell has cooled his engines and determined to lead all Southern Baptists to walk patiently and carefully through these days of unrest. I truly think Bill Harrell can build bridges so long as he maintains a benevolent neutrality between the warring factions in the convention. The SBC started in Augusta, GA, in 1845, when a group of churchmen came together for the sake of missions. It is possible that Augusta, GA, home of Chairman William Harrell, will serve again as a historic location for brokered peace and renewed missionary zeal.
  • Transparency — The Executive Committee runs like Southwestern Seminary and the International Mission Board should. There are no “trustee forums” or “executive sessions.” Everything is done in the light of day, and every Southern Baptist is welcome to attend and observe. In fact, anybody can sit in on committee meetings and hear the work of the convention getting done. During my stay in Nashville, I attended the Cooperative Program workgroup and had the chance to hear how NAMB is pursuing a course correction when it comes to fiscal responsibility. When I saw that trustees were carrying a notebook of information to guide their meeting, I requested a copy of any available trustee documents from ExComm staff. I was presented with a binder of approximately 300 pages that included background material provided to trustees to assist them in their decision making. I can’t seem to get any response from Southwestern Seminary’s legal counsel about one particular vote of the trustees, but staff at the Executive Committee are willing and able to assist Southern Baptists who are searching for a reason to have faith in the system. At some point, I believe every SBC agency and institution should make documents and data available in electronic format for all interested parties. An institution free of corruption and graft can stand the light of scrutiny, but we all know what the good book says about the reason that some men prefer darkness to light…
  • Dissent — Like every board of trustees in the SBC, there are diverse personalities on the Executive Committee with differing opinions about a variety of issues facing the convention. There are careful and cautious trustees, and there are grenade-launchers. Marty Duren has already discussed how Missouri-trustee Roger Moran used his final board meeting to display his own brand of fundamentalist fanaticism, embarrassing all Southern Baptists but himself and a coterie of Missourians who never thought trustees from the “Show Me” state would be so willing to “show us” their backside. Nevertheless, Bill Harrell gave Roger Moran the microphone and let him rant and hurl his invectives against Ed Stetzer, Danny Akin, and a host of other denominational servants who seem to peeve the Missouri layman to no end. It is probably fair to say that Moran is in a minority on the Executive Committee when it comes to his paranoia of the emergent church phenomenon, but he was afforded the chance to speak on the record without interruption or censure. If former IMB Chairman Tom Hatley and current SWBTS chairman Van McClain and Paige Patterson had more level heads, they would have allowed Wade Burleson’s and Dwight McKissic’s words to go out uncensored and without reprimand. As it is, they are bumbling away their offices to silence minority opinions. Moran will fade into the distant memory of Southern Baptists, and his “statement” will be remembered as a momentary blip of irrational ranting. Burleson’s and McKissic’s dissent will be immortalized so long as their respective boards of trustees try to silence, intimidate, or remove them. UPDATE: People who refuse to believe my contention that the most fanatical fundamentalist fringe can be traced to Paige Patterson should be reminded that Moran was first appointed to the ExComm during Patterson’s first year as convention president, and the following year Paige put Moran on the Resolutions Committee.
  • The Wives — A quick survey of the Executive Commitee meeting room revealed that few denominational wives travel to Nashville to attend the meeting. Rhonda Kelley, Mary Mohler, Charlotte Akin, Anna Roberts, Nellie Jo Rainer, Ann Iorg, Bobbye Rankin, Susie Hawkins, and Rebekah Land are busy enough attending to their respective ministries than to fill their calendar with an unceasing schedule of denominational meetings. In fact, I can imagine that it gets tiring for many of the wives to go to these meetings twice a year, year after year. I have seen only one of these women at the past two meetings of the Executive Committee, though I’m sure their agencies have a budget for them to accompany their husbands on some denominational business. These quiet, unseen servants are deserving of tremendous gratitude for the way they fill their supportive roles without the necessity of draining the denominational coffers to fly around the country at convention expense. More later on the travel budgets of another agency first lady wife. To sum up: Ten agencies represented, one president’s wife accounted for, no presidential pooches in attendance.
  • The Baptist Faith & Message — The convention’s statement of faith was reaffirmed as a sufficient guide for the preservation of Southern Baptist identity and confessional parameters. Baptist Press carried the story, which highlights that the Executive Committee was careful not to overstep their role by instructing the agencies. Rather, ExComm trustees went on record in favor of minimizing encroachments upon the convention-authorized doctrinal statement, leaving many of us wondering how long it will take for the IMB and SWBTS trustees to get the message: Southern Baptists don’t want our agencies and institutions continually tinkering with the fencepost.

One motion I will make…

At the forthcoming SBC annual meeting in San Antonio, I intend to make the following motion:

“That the Southern Baptist Convention request that the boards of trustees serving each convention agency, seminary, commission, and entity collaborate to establish uniform policies governing all employee uses of convention resources for the purposes of procuring, performing, and disclosing the revenue generated through all supplemental ministry assignments not considered to be official convention business; and that such uniform policies regulate the means whereby convention employees receive honoraria and expense reimbursements for all voluntary supplemental ministry assignments.”

Baptist Identity Conference II…

The dozen or so other bloggers who wrote about the conference have provided sufficient play-by-play, and I will not repeat what has already been said. Quite simply, this conference provided the kind of forum that Southern Baptists need to move beyond the impasse. The day for Memphis Declarations and Joshua Convergences is over. The day for a rising generation to talk together, openly and honestly, has come, and it is apparent that men like David Dockery, Timothy George, Thom Rainer, Frank Page, and Mike Day are able to foster such dialogue.

So instead of instead of offering my reflections on the content of the presentations, I’m going to give a sort of color commentary of various thoughts that popped into my head as the meeting occurred.

  1. David Dockery needs to be the president of the Southern Baptist Convention. Well, I guess I should rather say that the Southern Baptist Convention needs David Dockery. I’ve been beating this drum since last year, and I am hopeful that Dockery will allow his name to be placed in nomination at the 2008 Southern Baptist Convention in Indianapolis. Time and again at the conference, Dockery showed skilled statesmanship, poise, and gentleness. He’s brilliant and brave, kind and courteous. Frank Page is doing an excellent job at assessing the problem Southern Baptists are facing. Dockery will be able like few others to move our convention forward without regressing into theological uncertainty or cultural indifference.
  2. Thom Rainer is a genuinely likeable soul. He’s both honest and earnest, with a healthy dose of good humor. We shared a few laughs about blogs and bureaucracies, and people get the impression that Rainer means business when he talks about institutional accountability. He comes across as a servant of the truth, of the convention, and of the Lord. The fact that he’s been a successful pastor makes people listen to him. The fact that he doesn’t tell you he’s been a successful pastor makes people like him. Rainer also has the sense — unlike our former SBC President — to realize that you don’t increase baptisms by promoting baptisms and hocking F.A.I.T.H. paraphernalia across the convention. This, in itself, is a breath of fresh air.
  3. Greg Thornbury was able to take a tense subject and lighten the room. This takes the skill of a gifted communicator and a careful scholar. Professors can seem bookish, but Thornbury overcomes the stereotype with a harmonious blend of critique and comedy. Oh, and he uses “finger quotes” far too frequently. Watching students swarm around Thornbury reveals the degree to which Union’s Dean of Christian Studies loves his job. College kids can read through a professors’ feigned < finger quote >love< / finger quote > for them, when all he really loves is hearing himself talk about his own writing projects. Thornbury’s a class act, and probably the next president of Southern Seminary.
  4. Mike Day makes associational missions worth saving. Quite possibly the best presentation at the conference, Day’s honest appraisal of the state of the Southern Baptist Convention was sobering — and it takes a lot to sober me up, you know!
  5. Union University has a female provost (eeep!), a female associate provost (gasp!), and a female dean of students (choke!). David Dockery recognizes the nuance between the academy and the church when it comes to women’s roles, much like Danny Akin does. The men on the faculty treat their female superiors with respect and every appropriate deference. Over lunch on Friday, Dwight McKissic and I had the chance to visit with SWBTS professor Malcolm Yarnell and Union professor Gary Smith. The four of us shared in good-natured ribbing about the issue of females teaching biblical languages, and discovered that we have mutual interests in seeing bureaucratic corruption in the SBC addressed sooner rather than later. Good thing I tape-recorded the whole conversation from under the table. ;)
  6. Timmy Brister has cajones, a conclusion I have reached without any potential liability for his filing assault charges. While I tried to dance around my critiques of certain SBC leaders, Timmy busted out and announced that we had “too many liars” in the Southern Baptist Convention.
  7. Joe Thorn and Steve McCoy are dangerous, but in a good way. They are removed from the mud and blood of SBC politics; and while it gives them both a certain idealism at times, men like that are the best chance the SBC has of surviving. Not because they “believe in the convention,” like those who have nursed on the nipple of the Cooperative Program, but because they aren’t worried about “saving the denomination.” They are pastoring churches, reading and teaching theology, and trying to pour their lives into the lives of others. While some of us were politicking around tables, they were off to talk church with groups of Union students. The surest way to kill the SBC is to focus on the SBC. The surest way to save it is to conclude that God can kill it if he wants, and go about local church ministry. Joe and Steve figured that out before most of us caught on.
  8. Some bloggers are better suited for the Jerry Springer show than for a conference of such theological and denominational importance. One blogger in particular has confessed over on Les Puryear’s site that he was disappointed that Paige Patterson and I didn’t fight it out face to face. He’s told the world that he lingered at doorways and lurked in hallways to see if we would confront one another. The kinds of people who like to gather around a fight to watch it happen, and then complain when it doesn’t, are a nuisance to me and an obstacle to authentic rapprochement.
  9. Russell Moore is able to engage a tense dialogue without becoming nasty. I confessed during our public conversation that I got hot when he speaks or writes. I realize that his reaction to me is similar at times. When I questioned him vaguely about the appropriate means of addressing bureaucratic corruption, Russ pegged the issue at hand and spoke to it. “You can’t go around building a coalition of people who hate Paige Patterson,” Moore responded, suggesting that the conservative resurgence was never marked by a motive of “liberal-hating.” I think Russ’s absolving of the way resurgent movers-and-shakers went about building their coalition is naive, but I understand his point and am willing to ponder his not-so-subtle reproof.
  10. Timothy George’s assessment of the dangers in retrieving an alleged Anabaptist tradition for Southern Baptists is as stinging and convincing a critique as I’ve heard. Sectarian isolation and confessional eccentricity are awaiting Southern Baptists at the end of Paige Patterson’s programme for Anabaptist indoctrination. George spelled this out clearly, and I appreciate his willingness to jump into the fray with equal doses of passion and prudence.
  11. I would rather have heard Steve Gaines.
  12. The chocoloate chip cookies at the Doubletree Hotel are yummy. Dorothy Patterson should get that recipe for her homemakers-in-training at Southwestern Seminary.
  13. I realize we were in Tennessee, the home of Davy Crockett, but did anybody else think the coon-skin hat was roadkill overkill?
  14. The tendency that men have to shy away from personal conflict is frustrating to me. Over the past few months, I’ve been told to “beware” of Wade Burleson. Wade Burleson has been told to “separate himself” from me. This isn’t all that surprising, but when you discover that men who have glad-handed you and exchanged pleasantries are the same people who berate you when you’re not around, it can make you angry. Every inclination toward the kind of cowardice that compels men to be duplicitious, two-faced, and hypocritial must be ripped out of our convention root and branch. A man who shakes your hand and smiles, then walks away and rips you to pieces deserves to be shamed for his duplicity.  Meaningful dialogue can only commence if brethren are committed to honesty in person, and consistency in private.
  15. C.B. Scott is the truest friend any man can have. He’s got a spine of steel and a heart of gold. When my own conscience fails to provide the necessary impediment to a particular action, C.B. is there to calm me down, fire me up, or box my ears and break my jaw.
  16. Dwight McKissic is as sharp-minded as any Ph.D. in the room. He listens attentively to what is being said, and he synthesizes information faster then most professors I had in seminary. Few people are naturally able to intuit what I’m thinking, but when Dwight and I get into a conversation, he can almost read my mind. It’s incredible to spend time with somebody who reads a room with the acuity and speed of my colleague in Arlington.
  17. Blog-lurkers are an amazing group of people. The past few days have afforded me a chance to meet some of the people whose IP addresses have pushed my readership to near 200,000 since October. A tremendous number of pastors and laymen are reading blogs, processing the information, and forming some very profound conclusions about the state of affairs in the SBC. I wish more of them would comment and provide the rest of us with a more regular helping of their insight.
  18. The student choir at Union University is quite impressive. The complexity of the arrangements was surpassed only by the excellence of their performance.
  19. Chicken soft tacos are the best reason for having good ventilation that I know.
  20. Southwestern Seminary should be more careful about leaving their exhibit booth unattended.
  21. Funniest moment: Ed Stetzer explaining that the only reason he attends annual meetings of the Southern Baptist Convention is that when he’s there, he feels both young and thin.

Attention Southwestern Faculty…

Are you tired of trying to feed your family on the low income of a starting seminary professor?

Have you been thinking about getting back into a pastorate?

Do you wish there was something you could do to supplement your income and retirement?

Well, there is good news for you!!!

For little to no cost you can create a non-profit corporation in the State of Texas and begin to milk the teets of your own personal cash cow. All you have to do is file for the corporation, then start using your seminary-provided letterhead to circulate a brochure for your new evangelistic association.

Be sure and put your seminary-provided phone number on the brochure so when the big churches start calling, your seminary-provided switchboard can answer the calls.

When you start landing speaking engagements, have your seminary-provided driver carry you in a seminary-provided automobile to the airport, and then pick you up when you return. That way you can have the seminary pay the airport toll with your seminary-provided expense account.

Take seminary-provided photographers and news writers with you on the trip — all at seminary expense — and let the Office of Public Relations do a write up with seminary resources to promote your little business venture. If you’re lucky, you can get the folks over at Baptist Press to help you get more speaking engagements.

When you return from your speaking engagement, make sure and have the check cut to your evangelistic association so you don’t have to claim it on your income tax. In fact, you’ll be able to contribute to your own evangelistic association and receive a tax deduction to further minimize the tax burden from your $250,000.00 $37,000.00 per year salary.

Put your wife on the board as the only other director of the corporation, and find an accountant who will help you spend the money on “travel” for “ministry” to African safaris, or wherever else you’d like to go.

And if you have kids away from home, you can spend the money to bring them home for the holidays out of the association’s money, so long as you claim they are doing “research.”

It’s as easy as that!!!

If you have any questions about how to set this up, just contact your president or first lady. They’re quite experienced in this kind of thing. You can email your questions to:

Good luck, and Happy Hunting!!!

(P.S. — If you are a female professor, you might not be able to use seminary resources for long, so hurry now and reap the benefit while you can)

Paige Patterson’s slush fund?

Has anybody ever heard of the Patmos Evangelistic Association?

I thought Southwestern Seminary’s presidential residence was located at 1901 W. Boyce Ave, Fort Worth, TX, 76115? Apparently, Patmos Evangelistic Association has offices there as well.

I guess that explains the construction around Pecan Manor over the last few years.

If you download the non-profit filings for Patmos Evangelistic Association, you get the following information:

1. The most recent IRS Form 990 was filed in December 2005.

2. The employer identification number is 751777000.

3. The Reported Form 990 Asset Amount is $67,658.00

4. The Reported Form 990 Asset Range is $25,000.00 to $99,999.00.

5. The Reported Form 990 Income amount is $63,064.00.

6. The Reported Form 990 Income Amount Range is $25,000.00 to $99,999.00.

7. The Reported From 990 Revenue Amount is $62,894.00

8. The Organization is classified as an independent religious organization not affiliated with a national, regional, or geographic grouping of organizations.

9. The Organization was granted non-profit status in November 1981.

10. Contributions to the organization are tax-deductible.

11. The Organization receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public.

12. The Principal Activity of the Organization is Evangelism.

Wow, $63,000.00 worth of evangelism in 2005 alone. Paige Patterson must have paid for Bobby Welch’s bus tour. Either that or a lot of wild African game heard the Gospel. I wonder if he discloses the revenues of Patmos Evangelistic Association to the SWBTS Board of Trustees? And who is on the board of Patmos Ministries, because they haven’t filed any updated information with the Texas Secretary of State. In fact, according to the Secretary of State, the Paige Patterson Evangelistic Association, also formed in 1981, is currently in “expired” status for a non-profit corporation.



One of our commenters has found that a car could have been donated to Patmos Evangelistic Association in Wake Forest, NC. I’m wondering if PEA ever received a donated silver Cadillac sedan? Did Southeastern Seminary give Paige Patterson a car when he left to go to SWBTS, even though SWBTS provides the president with an automobile? Talk about bureaucratic duplication…

Also, it appears that there are only two directors on the Patmos Evangelistic Association Board of Directors. They are Paige Patterson, president; and Dorothy Patterson, secretary. Read for yourself by clicking here. The tax forms were prepared by Charles Armstrong, CPA, who is also the father of SEBTS Comptroller, David Armstrong.

The 2005-990 Form, page ten, reveals that Paige and Dorothy Patterson spent $26,275.00 in travel on behalf of the Patmos Evangelistic Association. It also shows that the Patterson’s son, Armour, received $6,650.00 for “research” related to a “forthcoming book,” as well as what appears to be $727.00 in travel reimbursements. In 2004, Armour Patterson received $5,800.00 for similar research for a “forthcoming book” and $1,215.00 for expenses incurred while conducting “research surveys.” In 2003, Armour Patterson received $4,950.00 for “contract services” for researching a “forthcoming book,” and travel reimbursements totalling $3,442.00. I guess we are all waiting to see this book.

It is also apparent that the Patterson’s have been experiencing tremendous fundraising success through Patmos Evangelistic Association. In 2004, total receipts were $45,657.00. In 2003, they were $20,259. Back in 2002 at Southeastern, when Patmos was based in North Carolina, the Patterson’s brought in a meager $16,619. I’m assuming the Patterson’s non-profit is reflecting a basic law of economic theory: as demand goes up, prices increase. Either that, or the amount adding to total assets each year is roughly $20,000, which is not being used for ministry purposes, but rather being accumulated year-to-year.

I cannot help but think about the fact that the United States Government forbids elected officials from using the offices and resources afforded by taxpayer dollars to conduct private business. How long will Southern Baptists tolerate a lesser standard for tithe-money than Congress tolerates for tax-money?

Also, the number listed for Patmos Evangelistic Association on the IRS Forms is (817) 923-1921, which seems to be the same number for Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Tonight, I called the seminary switchboard and asked a very helpful young man named Jarod if he would connect me to the voicemail for “Patmos Evangelistic Association.”

He searched for a while, and then politely informed me that he had no such listing. I should try back on Monday morning when the seminary switchboard operator is at work. I guess I’ll have to call at 7:30am and ask for Sue.


Very interesting.

You know what they say about a broken clock…

We at Baptist Blogger are grateful that Gary Ledbetter over at the TEXAN has provided Southern Baptists with a survey of SBC seminaries regarding the issues of female professors and tenure review. This kind of coverage, my friends, is reporting that helps the convention. This kind…not so much.

Of course, we’re wondering why the TEXAN didn’t feel obliged to ask Southwestern Seminary for further clarification? And we’re curious if Paige Patterson would have responded if they had, or if he would have sent out Torquemada, armed with another pink white paper?

Nonetheless, we understand that Paige Patterson will have a chance to answer those questions soon, but in another venue.