On Aug. 13, 2002, the Missouri Baptist Convention filed its first lawsuit against five Baptist institutions that shifted to self-perpetuating boards. Fifteen years and several million dollars later, 40 percent of the cases remain unresolved.
As a journalist, there are stories I love to write. Like the stories from the annual gathering of the Baptist World Alliance last month in Bangkok, Thailand. These types of events inspire me and deepen my faith, so I’m excited to share them with others.
There are other stories I feel a responsibility to write about, even though I wish the issues I must address did not exist.
The Baptist Home and Missouri Baptist University submitted legal responses on Jan. 31 to urge a judge to dismiss motions for summary judgment filed by the Missouri Baptist Convention on Dec. 2. The MBC requested the Court rule in its favor without a trial, claiming its 2016 victory in the case against the Missouri Baptist Foundation should serve as precedent in the cases against the Home and MBU. However, the institutions rebut the MBC’s claim that their cases are “nearly identical” to that of the Foundation’s case.
The Western District Court of Appeals in Kansas City, Mo., on July 5 overruled and denied The Missouri Baptist Foundation’s motions for the court to either rehear the Missouri Baptist Convention’s case against it or transfer the matter to the Missouri Supreme Court.
The Missouri Baptist Foundation on June 8 has filed a “motion for rehearing and alternative application for transfer” of the Missouri Baptist Convention’s nearly 14-year-old case against the Foundation.
The Western District Court of Appeals in Kansas City, Mo. — a three-judge panel — ruled May 24 in favor of the Missouri Baptist Convention in their 14-year legal battle over selection of the Missouri Baptist Foundation’s board of trustees.
The Missouri Baptist Convention took an unprecedented move when it filed a motion for declaratory judgment against The Baptist Home, Missouri Baptist University, Windermere Baptist Conference Center, Word&Way and the Missouri Baptist Foundation in August 2002. (The convention dropped its lawsuit against Word&Way in April 2010.) This legal action timeline includes significant dates and actions since this time that is still ongoing.