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For The Joy Set Before Us

In response to a changing church and world, the CBF Missions Council led an 18-month planning process that involved missionary field personnel, CBF state and regional organizations, CBF staff and other stakeholders to produce a comprehensive plan for CBF Global Missions. As others scale back or focus exclusively on short-term missions, CBF is doubling down on its commitment to the long-term presence of missionaries. After more than two decades of Christian witness in 30 countries, CBF stands convinced that there are no shortcuts to making "disciples of all nations" (Mt 28:19). Whether translating the Bible into a previously unwritten language or resurrecting hope in rural America, the transformation we seek requires a patient, incarnational witness with others.

Read more about the strategic planning process here
Read the conclusion of the strategic planning process, For the Joy Set Before Us, here.

For the Joy Set Before Us - CBF Global Missions Renewal from Cooperative Baptist Fellowship on Vimeo.

Frequently Asked Questions about CBF’s New Funding Model for Global Missions

There are many exciting changes happening in CBF Global Missions. These frequently asked questions focus on the transition to a sustainable Global Missions funding model. This new funding model is the result of prayerful strategic planning that began in September, 2014. You can learn more about the entire strategic plan titled, “The Joy Set before Us” and the planning process at Download a printable copy of the New Funding Model Frequently Asked Questions by clicking here.                      

1.  Why is CBF making changes to Global Missions?

Twenty-five years after the establishment of CBF, our context has changed considerably. The cultural complexity of our own communities, the shift from congregational sponsorship of mission to direct participation in it, and the emergence of a global church that actively sends its own missionaries require us to reimagine our role in missions in the 21st century. One of our responsibilities in this new context is to establish a sustainable funding model to support our common work around the globe.

2.  Who made the decisions about the changes in this new funding model?

In response to a changing church and world, the CBF Missions Council led an 18-month planning process that involved field personnel, CBF state and regional organizations, CBF staff and other stakeholders to produce a comprehensive plan for CBF Global Missions. One important goal was to develop an equitable and sustainable funding model that joined all CBF field personnel under a single category of service with CBF.

3.  What is different in this new funding model?

In this new model, the Offering for Global Missions remains the primary funding engine that provides for the Mission Presence of field personnel. Additionally, all field personnel will raise their individual Mission Programming budgets principally from friends and family (see graphic). 



4.  What is meant by the terms “Mission Presence” and “Mission Programming” in the new model?

    • Mission Presence secures the long-term presence of field personnel on the field through salary, retirement, insurance, housing and child education support through CBF's Offering for Global Missions.  
    • Mission Programming includes the daily ministry expenses of field personnel such as curriculum, travel and event costs, as well as funding for what has been termed “projects” in the past. 

5.  The 2012 Task Force Report stated that CBF churches desire that all field personnel be “fully-funded.” Can you explain why this funding model takes a different approach?

We’ve learned over the past 10 years that we are able to involve more individuals and congregations in supporting missions when we encourage multiple funding streams. All field personnel will be equitably and fully-funded through these different funding streams.

6.  Are we being asked to do something different in the future? Our church currently gives to missions in multiple ways including the Offering for Global Missions and direct support to field personnel and projects.  

You will still support the same important ministries as before; however, your church may apportion that support a little bit differently:

    • Congregational mission offerings and unified budgeted missions giving will continue to fund mission presence when it is received as the Offering for Global Missions.
    • Designated support given in-honor-of specific people will continue through the Offering for Global Missions.
    • Beginning on October 1, 2017, donations to specific projects that support ongoing ministries will become line items in field personnel Mission Programming budgets instead of being held in separate project accounts.

If you or your church supports specific projects, speak to the corresponding field personnel for the appropriate account number.  

7.  When are we going to be expected to begin giving in a different way?

CBF’s fiscal year runs from October to September. All field personnel budgets and administrative support transitions will be completed by October 1, 2017. Field personnel are asked to have 100% of their Mission Programming budget pledged by this date. Congregations and individuals who make designated gifts to specific field personnel and projects should begin to consider how these changes will affect your congregational giving plan as well as how it may impact the ministries you support. Please contact the Global Missions office at 770-220-1600 with specific questions about how to make any necessary changes.

8.  I’ve been supporting particular field personnel for several years and I’d like to keep doing this. Is this still possible?

Yes. You can support their mission presence through in-honor-of gifts to the Offering for Global Missions and/or their daily ministries through their personal Mission Programming accounts.

9.  Will there still be different categories of field personnel?

In the new model, all CBF field personnel will be employees of CBF or employed through a partner-organization, such as field personnel who are jointly commissioned with a sister agency. All CBF field personnel are held to the same standards of excellence, accountability and transparency in their work.

10.  Will you “grandfather” in field personnel who have been with CBF for a long time so they aren’t required  to raise any funding?

No. This plan brings all field personnel under the same requirements. All field personnel will be part of a support team that will train, resource and coach them in fundraising. Field personnel with concrete plans to retire by the end of 2017 will not be required to raise Mission Programming support.

11.  What happens if the goal for the Offering for Global Missions isn’t met in this new model?

We have budgeted conservatively as we move forward. Even so, as is the case with any church staff, we will commission and support only the number of field personnel that our family of churches and individuals can afford. This model does not lend itself to individual budget “padding,” which means the decisions church missions and finance committees make locally will have a direct impact on our presence and work on the field.

12.  What happens if field personnel don’t raise enough funding to meet their Mission Programming goal?

While their presence will be secure, their ministries will be impacted. Multiple layers of training and support will be available to all field personnel in order for them to successfully meet their funding goals.

13.  When will the new strategic plan begin?

Much of the new vision plan is already active. Field personnel will begin raising financial support for mission programming among friends and family in the fall of 2016. All field personnel will transition into the new funding model by October 1, 2017.

14.  When will you start commissioning new field personnel in the new model?

We expect to commission new field personnel in 2017.

15.  How can I help right now?

Thank you for your generous support! Please continue to pray and give. While we are confident about this innovative approach to funding God’s call to mission, this is a significant transition requiring many adjustments for field personnel and staff. It is crucial that churches and individuals continue to support mission presence through the Offering for Global Missions and through current designated giving because these gifts will support all field personnel in the new funding model.


Discover more about the new CBF Global Missions strategic plan, The Joy Set Before Us, as well as CBF’s Mission Commitments and Contexts by exploring here.  

Please call 770.220.1600 or Email us at if you have additional questions.

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