By Adult Resource Team on April 07, 2016
The Cooperative Program is the foundational means of supporting Southern Baptist work in each state, nationally, and around the world. Without the Cooperative Program, missions offerings such as the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions are simply inadequate. Yet there are many in our churches who have no idea what the Cooperative Program is or why it is so important. Cooperative Program Sunday—April 10—provides an annual opportunity to educate church members (and leaders!) about this vital approach to supporting missions.
Cooperative Program Sunday Ideas
- Obtain Cooperative Program bulletin inserts or brochures from your state convention office.
- Enlist the pastor or another leader to call attention to the bulletin insert during the worship service, explaining what the Cooperative Program is and why the church gives through it.
- Highlight information about your church budget and the amount your church gives. If your church gives a percentage of undesignated receipts, identify that percentage.
- Encourage your church to give at least 10% of undesignated receipts through the Cooperative Program. Call attention to both personal and corporate tithing.
- For the children’s sermon, have a special Cooperative Program lesson for children. Explain how churches working together can do more in missions. Do an object lesson using play money.
- Show a Cooperative Program video from your state convention or the Southern Baptist Convention.
- Consider enlisting a special Cooperative Program speaker from your state convention. Ask the speaker to explain how the Cooperative Program came to be and how it works to support missions.
- Ask your state convention to provide a cumulative report of your church’s Cooperative Program giving. This may date from the time your church started or when the Cooperative Program began in 1925. Celebrate the total given to date by your church through the Cooperative Program. Highlight missions work made possible because of your Cooperative Program giving.
- Find out the amount of Cooperative Program funds used in your state and the amount forwarded to the SBC. Emphasize important work done in your state through the Cooperative Program as well as ministries supported at the national level, which include seminaries, North American missions, international missions, and other SBC work.
The Cooperative Program is a unique plan for supporting all our work as Southern Baptists. Percentage giving allows churches of all sizes to have a part in everything we do. Don’t skip the annual Cooperative Program emphasis because there are always people who do not know about our plan of mission support. And anything this good is worth celebrating every year!
Joy Bolton first learned about the Cooperative Program as a GA and has been a lifelong supporter. In her role as executive director of Kentucky WMU, she understands its value for missions in each state and around the world.