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Strategy Coordinator

Changing the Course of Southern Baptist Missions

R. Bruce Carlton
Foreword by E Coye Still

Regnum Books International (2010), 273pp, ISBN: 978-1-870345-78-1

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Bruce Carlton

Strategy Coordinator
Changing the Course of Southern Baptist Missions

Book Description

In 1976, the Southern Baptist Convention adopted its Bold New Thrusts in Foreign Missions with the overarching goal of sharing the gospel with every person in the world by the year 2000.  The formation of Cooperative Services International (CSI) in 1985 and the assigning of the first non-residential missionary (NRM) in 1987 demonstrated the Foreign Mission Board’s (now International Mission Board) commitment to take the gospel message to countries that restricted traditional missionary presence and to people groups identified as having little or no access to the gospel.  Carlton traces the historical development along with an analysis of the key components of the paradigm and its significant impact on Southern Baptists’ missiology.

About the author

R. Bruce Carlton served in Asia from 1986 to 2007 as a church planter, Strategy Coordinator and trainer in areas and among peoples with little or no access to the gospel. He is the author of Acts 29: Practical Training for Facilitating Church-Planting Movements Among the Neglected Harvest Fields, a manual for training Strategy Coordinators that has been translated into seventeen different languages. Presently, Carlton serves as the Associate Professor of Missions at Boyce College, a school of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, USA.


'Dr. Carlton has produced an outstanding, one-of-a-kind work addressing the influence of the non-residential missionary/strategy coordinator’s role in Southern Baptist missions.  This well written, scholarly text examines the twentieth century global missiological currents that influenced the leadership of the International Mission Board, resulting in a new paradigm to assist in taking the gospel to the nations.  Dr. Carlton writes as both a missiologist and a missionary.  This work reveals the keen eye of a scholar, but also the heart of a practitioner who desires to see the multiplication of disciples, leaders, and churches across the globe.  This text is a must-read for anyone longing to know more about the recent history of the International Mission Board and the theology and missiology behind the SC role and church planting movements'.

J. D. Payne, National Missionary, North American Mission Board and Assistant Professor of Church Planting and Evangelism, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

'I have enjoyed friendship and partnership in the gospel with Bruce Carlton in different capacities.  When I served as the Strategy Coordinator for a South Asian city Bruce was my supervisor.  He helped me understand what I was trying to do and how I should be doing it.  Since my return to pastoral ministry in America, Bruce has been a missiological dialogue partner.  In both capacities Bruce has been a “flame stoker”—fanning the flames of commitment to “make disciples of all nations.”  I’m glad that Bruce has taken on the task of explaining and evaluating the development of the Nonresidential Missionary (NRM) and Strategy Coordinator (SC) paradigms.  He writes from three important perspectives. Bruce writes as an insider.  In Cambodia Bruce was a practitioner of what has developed into the SC approach.  His work was at the wellspring of hundreds of reproducing churches.  After leaving Cambodia, Bruce taught and mentored many men and women in methodologies for planting reproducing churches.  Bruce has lived through the development of these paradigms as an effective practitioner. Bruce writes as an insightful researcher.  He asks important questions about the NRM, SC, and Church Planting Movement paradigms and searches for honest answers. Finally, Bruce writes as a respecter of the relational character of missions.  On the front lines of gospel advance the Spirit mediates the word through people.  Grand strategies and paradigms also develop within relational contexts. From these three perspectives Bruce helps us understand why the paradigms have developed as they have and equips us to ask key questions as we look forward'.

E. Coye Still, III, Ph.D.

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