ABHMS board elects president to second term; approves 2022 budget

VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 11/19/21)—During its virtual meeting Monday and Tuesday, American Baptist Home Mission Societies’ (ABHMS) board of directors elected the Rev. Jamie Washam to a second two-year term as president and approved ABHMS’ 2022 operating budget.

Submitted by Michaele D. Birdsall, ABHMS board treasurer, the budget included expenses of $15,465,166.

In his remarks, Dr. Jeffrey Haggray, ABHMS executive director, spoke to meeting the needs and addressing the challenges of its partners. Describing ministrElife as one of the organization’s “tools of the trade,” he noted that its Zoom platform enabled hundreds of churches to do ministry without interruption during the pandemic.

Reflecting on ABHMS’ Practices in Mission and Ministry—largely communicated through networking capacity building, experiential learning, leader training and equipping, and educational empowerment—Haggray noted, “I am particularly excited for the strategic investments we’re making in ministry programs like our Co-Creators Incubator, Intercultural Leadership Institute and Judson Press.” In speaking of the ABHMS publishing ministry, he referenced a new strategic direction, including consideration of an imprint focused on author-funded publications. Judson Press is under the new leadership of publisher the Rev. Dr. Cheryl Price.

In other financial reports, Vincent Dent, ABHMS chief development officer, shared that annual giving and revenue through September 2021 has reached more than $2.1 million with the greatest increase seen in contributions to the Passionary Fund.

During her report on mission partner grants, the Rev. Rothangliani Chhangte, senior associate for Grants, Partnerships and Strategy Alignment, announced that, as of Sept. 30, 2021, more than $1.6 million had been distributed, with the highest percentage of funds going toward leadership empowerment, which includes scholarships and continuing education grants. Chhangte also reported that $249,224 in OGHS disaster grants had been distributed.

In other business, the board elected a new slate of officers. In addition to Washam’s second two-year term, the Rev. Dr. Lacey Alford will continue to serve as vice president for the duration of her term on the board, through December 2022; and Dr. Barbara Ragland was elected secretary. Finally, the Rev. Trevor Hyde assumed leadership of the finance committee.

American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.