The South Carolina chapter of the Conservative Baptist Network launched on June 4 with approximately 100 of the South Carolina Baptist Convention’s 2,200-plus churches.
Chad Campbell, senior pastor at Mount Pisgah Baptist Church in Easley and immediate past president of the SCBC Pastors Conference, is the state coordinator.
“I am excited about the launch of the CBN in South Carolina. One of our greatest desires is to assist our state convention in accomplishing its vision of every life being saturated and transformed by the gospel,” Campbell said.
While 100 is only a fraction of the churches that identify with the SCBC, he believes the number will increase substantially in the coming months.
The national CBN reports over 6,000 members with a 55-person steering committee. There is the belief among CBN leaders that the SBC is drifting leftward in its theology and practice. The CBN states that it endorses “the Baptist Faith and Message 2000; affirms the inerrancy, supremacy, and sufficiency of the Bible; supports religious liberty; rejects racism and sexism and worldly ideologies like Critical Race Theory, intersectionality, and all other agendas deceptively labeled as social justice.” The group does not plan to leave the SBC but work within it to create a more dominant conservative presence.
That has been challenged by other Southern Baptists. Ed Litton, pastor and newly elected SBC president, said, “Honestly, I do not understand why they exist.”
R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said, “The real network is the Southern Baptist Convention.”
In addition to Campbell, other leaders who are helping with the formation of the organization for South Carolina include: Wayne Dickard, retired pastor, former SCBC president, and a member of Rock Springs Baptist Church in Easley; Kyle Caudell, member of the SCBC Executive Board and senior pastor of Union Baptist Church in Iva; Tommy Kelly, former SCBC president and senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Varnville; Gene Hogan, layman and member of Highland Park Baptist Church in Hanahan; and Joey Deese, senior pastor of Oakdale Baptist Church in Rock Hill.
On a mission to “champion the sufficiency of Scripture,” Campbell says, “It has been encouraging to hear from grassroots Baptists who desire to have a collective voice. So many of our pastors have disengaged from convention life because they feel they have no voice. This is evident by the participation at both the state and national conventions. It is my hope that a state chapter of CBN provides a platform for these pastors to be heard and then reengage in the cooperative efforts of the SCBC.”
Campbell has invited South Carolina Baptists who are interested in learning more about the state chapter of the CBN to go www.cbn.sc or www.conservativebaptistnetwork.com.