Friday, May 09, 2008

What if You Could Vote from Home?

What would it look like if our national convention this year in Indianapolis was actually composed of our churches? What if every one of our 42,000+ churches was engaged in the many conversations that will take place on the convention floor? What if hundereds of thousands of votes were cast from all around the world? What if IMB personnel overseas as well as bi-vocational pastors in small rural areas were allowed to watch the convention online and participate by voting online?
Last year in San Antonio only 3,567 churches sent messengers to the SBC. Less than 9% of our churches participated by sending messengers! How can we say that our national meeting in any way represents the views of Southern Baptists? It's time we make a change.
I have submitted a resolution to the Resolutions Committee calling for online voting at future conventions. Should it come out of committee than I will gladly speak for the need to engage all of our churches in these important decisions that are being made concerning the future of our denomination. If the SBC is declining (and it appears that it is) then it is time to bring the whole SBC family to the table to discuss solutions.
The resolution that I submitted is as follows:

WHEREAS, each year only a small percentage of churches send messengers to the annual convention, and

WHEREAS, most of the churches being served by bi-vocational ministers are not ever able to send messengers to the annual convention; and

WHEREAS, messengers may already register for the annual convention online; and

WHEREAS, the annual meeting is already being live-streamed on the world wide web; and

WHEREAS, technology exists to allow for online voting; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana, June 10-11, 2008, call for online voting to be made available at future conventions so that elected messengers may participate in the convention without having to incur the expense of traveling to the convention city.


Geoff Baggett said...


Could I have your permission to "reprint" this on sbc IMPACT!? It is an idea that I have put forth before. I would like to help you widen your audience a bit.

Geoff Baggett

Dave Samples said...


Please do...I would love to see something like this seriously considered. It really could have a postive effect on the future of our convention. Thanks!

Rev. said...

I've heard others speak about this same thing. Personally, I think it would be a good idea. I'll be interested to see what happens with your proposed resolution, Dave.

Dave Samples said...


What would happen if only 9% of our church members showed up for business meeting? (wait...that really is what happens...bad example). I have a low expectation of anything happening other than putting the issue on the table. Thanks for commenting. I love your site...

Lee said...

Your resolution will get my vote.

There are some disadvantages of not being in the convention hall, but overall, I think it is an idea whose time has come.

Dave Samples said...

Thanks, Lee. From where I sit...some involvement is better than no involvement...