FOM Historical Sketch

The Fellowship of Missions
An Historical Sketch

Paper presented at FOM annual meeting,
September 1995, Harrisburg, PA
by William H. Smallman, D. Miss.


I. THE FIRST FRUITS: HISTORICAL ROOTS IN TAM

When the people of Israel approached their Promised Land they erected memorials, pillars of rocks, to permanently mark their passage through the Jordan, and through history. We are erecting markers, not of stone, but in the flesh and blood of the people who have constituted the history of the Fellowship of Missions. The people of God need to be reminded of the significant events and movements that have carried the work forward. So, we remind ourselves of the timeless principles, as well as the principal personalities, that characterize our fundamentalist mission agencies in the latter third of this Twentieth Century.

FOM completed 25 years of operation on September 25 of 1994. While we are a tad late in celebrating our birthday, we are reminding one another of the great things, and the ordinary things, and the great people, and the ordinary people, which the Lord of the Harvest has employed for His purposes in recent years.

FOM was founded out of necessity. We will review the broader history of Protestant missions organizations earlier in the century, and then lead up to the factors which drove FOM into existence. Our own organizational history makes more sense in the light of our genealogy and principles. This was not a casual undertaking the big band

1. IMC — CWME (Conciliar)

During the years of the Modernist – Fundamentalist debates that raged in the first quarter of this century the gospel-preaching churches were pulling out of the denominations that headed into modern liberalism. The separatist churches formed their own independent mission agencies, then virtually all identified as “fundamentalist.” These fledgling missions got together for mutual encouragement in 1917 to form the IFMA, the Interdenominational Foreign Mission Association. This continues to the present day, though is of a less distinctly separatist character. The lines were clearly drawn between the fundamentalists and the modernists. Dozens of new missions were founded.

Meanwhile, the denominational missions of the liberal orbit continued their cooperation in the International Missionary Council. The IMC was formed in 1921 as the intended continuation of the leadership commission of the World Missionary Conference in 1910 in Edinburgh. As the evangelical churches and their missionaries pulled out of global missions structures, the liberalism and social agenda of the IMC was increasingly concentrated. In 1961 the IMC was merged into the World Council of Churches where its successor, the Commission on World Mission and Evangelism, continues to foment socialistic and liberationist activism.  It was patently obvious that the IFMA and the IMC had nothing in common in their respective agendas back in the 1930’s and into the 1940’s.

2. IFMA — EFMA (Conciliatory)

In the post-World War II era, “evangelicalism” developed as a less separatistic offshoot of fundamentalism. Many of the evangelical denominations had their own mission boards within their own structures. These missions associated in a similar fashion in 1945 as the EFMA, or Evangelical Foreign Mission Association. The EFMA was always close to the IFMA, except in two particulars: the EFMA had denominational missions, and the EFMA would accept Pentecostal and charismatic-oriented missions which the IFMA would not. This third, or middle ground, orbit in Protestantism was closer in doctrine and evangelistic purpose to the fundamentalists and closer in ecumenical spirit to the liberals. (The EFMA was retitled in the 1990’s as the Evangelical Fellowship of Mission Agencies to incorporate home missions as well as foreign ones.)

3. TAM / FOM (Consistent)

The history of this fundamentalist group is noted below. While the original polar struggles were between the IMC and the IFMA, the IFMA softened its stand on separation and the TAM arose as the new polar opposite of the CWME, successor to the IMC in the WCC. We will see how FOM arose out of the internal rumblings of TAM.

B. THE 1940’S: ALPHABET SOUP! NEW ORGANIZATIONS

Dr. Carl T. McIntire had raised a clear voice against liberalism since he accompanied the conservative split from Princeton Seminary in 1929) and then followed Dr. J. Gresham Machen in the formation of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. A later split with Machen and eventuated in the Bible Presbyterian Church in 1938, still based at McIntire’s own Bible Presbyterian Church in Collingswood, NJ.

The liberal churches in America had formed their ecclesiastical equivalent of the League of Nations back in 1908, the Federal Council of Churches. So, the Bible Presbyterian Church and the Bible Protestant Church formed a body for like-minded fundamentalist churches on September 17, 1941, calling it the American Council of Christian Churches. Other churches, including many of the GARB churches, soon joined the ACCC. Just a tad less than a year later, a broader coalition of evangelical churches formed the NAE, the National Association of Evangelicals, as a mild repudiation of the separatism of the fundamentalists. Many fundamentalist leaders active in the founding of the NAE later left that organization as it softened its opposition to liberalism.

On the international scene, the liberal church organizations of Life & Work and Faith & Order laid the foundations for a World Council of Churches. Its constitution was drawn up in 1937, but the outbreak of World War II delayed the actual founding of the WCC for over another decade, until August of 1948, in Amsterdam. Not to be outdone, Dr. McIntire launched the International Council of Christian Churches, also in Amsterdam, only days before the founding of the World Council of Churches. To this day, Dr. Carl McIntire has been the only President of the ICCC.

C. THE FOUNDING OF TAM

As evangelicalism mellowed in its attitude toward the mainline liberal denominations and missions in the late 1940’s, the distinctly fundamentalist and separatist missions sought a forum for mutual encouragement and dealing with their common problems. Some of them took a serious look at the IFMA and concluded that they could not conscientiously cooperate with that non-separatist association.

In 1950 Dr. Arthur Fetzer of Baptist Mid-Missions convened meetings of representatives of The Association of Baptists for World Evangelism and Baptist Mid-Missions with leaders of the IFMA to discuss possible affiliation. His letter spoke of missionary organizations being “united in a comprehensive program to offset and defeat those efforts of the World Council of Churches and its affiliates.” He continued, “…a service agency is needed to represent all sound evangelical missionary societies and to approach governments on such matters as missionary credentials, government approval, and property transfers” (Frizen 251).

Dr. Joseph Stowell represented Baptist Mid-Missions as a member of its General Council, and Dr. Harold Commons represented ABWE as its President, with J. Gordon Holdcroft of the Independent Board for Presbyterian Missions joining them at a later meeting with IFMA leaders. The cordial negotiations came down to key issues of ecclesiastical separation and representation before governments. It became clear that there could be no working relationship between the organizations. There was a proposal that the IFMA, EFMA and the Missions Commission of the ICCC seek to form an Association of Fundamental Missions In the later analysis of Dr. “Jack” Frizen of IFMA, “An impasse was reached in the negotiations, and the bright hope for a possible federation of conservative evangelical missions did not materialize…because of the extremely hard line of separation taken by some ICCC leaders” (p. 256).

The one clear choice in the 1950’s was for fundamentalist missions to line up with the International Council of Christian Churches, and the ACCC in America, so they formed TAM, or The Associated Missions (of the ICCC / ACCC) in 1952 with seven charter member missions. This was led by the clear prophetic voice of Dr. Carl McIntire, also the head of the ACCC and the ICCC.

The first Administrative Secretary of TAM was Dr. Harold Commons, President of ABWE, with Dr. Robert Ryerse, Vice-President of Baptist Mid-Missions, working with him. The next leader of TAM was Rev. Bernard N. Bancroft of ABWE who had served in the Philippines from 1936 to 1960. The 1964 Officers of TAM were listed as Dr. J.G. Holdcroft (Independent Board of Presbyterian Missions) President, Dr. Harold Commons (ABWE) Vice-President, Rev. Edward C. Bomm (ABWE) Treasurer, Rev. Robert L. Ryerse (BMM) Recording Secretary, and and Rev. Bernard N. Bancroft (ABWE) Administrative Secretary. Dr. Bancroft was later followed by Dr. William Hopewell of ABWE.

D. PROBLEMS WITHIN TAM

Tensions arose between Dr. McIntire and leaders of various commissions of the ICCC, as well as with leaders of the ACCC. Much of the trouble related to Dr. McIntire’s demands to influence all decisions of all of his ministry organizations, and refusals to be accountable for the financial interactions of those several related organizations. The tensions came to a head at annual conventions of the ACCC in 1964, 1965 and 1967. Some of the church groups involved in the ICCC in the Central African Republic and the Philippines were running contrary to the work of member missions of TAM. Dr. McIntire devoted most of his attention to his many other ministries, but still expected to mold the thinking of the leaders of TAM and the ACCC. Resentments deepened, and personal meetings and correspondence did not heal the widening breach.

The final rupture came in 1968 at two meetings of the ACCC, one in Willing Grove, PA, October 22-25, and one in Pasadena, CA, convened October 28. Dr. McIntire’s attempts to recapture absolute leadership of both of the Associations and all of their commissions were frustrated. He tried a power play at Pasadena by bringing in delegates who would do his bidding. The ensuing shameful fracas involved parliamentary maneuvering, name-calling, pushing and shoving, and the bodily removal of Dr. McIntire by the hotel security forces, all playing out before television news cameras. Public attacks on the ACCC, and exchanges of court orders over the control of ACCC funds eventuated in Dr. McIntire’s final expulsion from the ACCC. At the next meeting of TAM in February of 1969 Dr. McIntire attempted to roadblock serious discussion of most issues and was voted down on all his attempts to control the organization. He finally stormed out, with only two TAM delegates joining him. These he instantly named as officers of TAM. The majority of member missions were clearly at the end of any semblance of a working relationship with the ongoing TAM organization. It was time for a new organization of fundamentalist mission agencies to be born.


II. THE FOUNDING OF THE FELLOWSHIP OF MISSIONS

A. FOUNDING FATHERS

The first informal meeting to discuss a new fellowship of fundamentalist missions was held at the Henry Grady Hotel in Atlanta, GA, on April 24, 1969. Dr. Harold Commons of ABWE was elected Temporary Chairman, with Harold E. Haines of Bible Protestant Missions the Recording Secretary pro tem, and Rev. Bernard N. Bancroft the Administrative Secretary pro tem.

That meeting determined to form a fellowship of separated missions with the four former officers of TAM serving as a Temporary Committee of Organization. The elected officers were Dr. Harold Commons (ABWE) President, Dr. Arthur G. Fetzer (BMM) Vice-President, Rev. Harold E. Haines (Bible Protestant Missions) Recording Secretary; and Rev. Edward C. Bomm (ABWE) Treasurer. They empowered the officers to open a bank account and contact interested agencies about membership, whether or not they had been in TAM.

The next preliminary meeting followed a month later on May 22, 1969 at the headquarters of ABWE in Philadelphia. Those present at the meeting were, in alphabetical order:

Rev. Harold E. Amstutz (ABWE)

Rev. Bernard N. Bancroft

Rev. Edward C. Bomm (ABWE)

Rev. Robert Burns (ABWE)

Dr. Harold T. Commons (ABWE)

Dr. Arthur G. Fetzer (BMM)

Mr. Nick Frost (BMM)

Rev. Harold E. Haines (Bible Protestant Missions)

Rev. Robert Hayden (Fellowship of Baptists for Home Missions)

Dr. Gordon Holdcroft (IBPM)

Rev. Edgar Koontz (GARBC)

Rev. Robert F. Kurtz (Independent Faith Missions)

Dr. John Millheim (ACCC General Secretary)

Dr. Ernest Pickering (ABWE)

Rev. William M. Pierson (ABWE)

Rev. Carl Standridge (IFM)

Dr. Joseph M. Stowell (BMM Council)

Rev. B. Donald Sutherland (ABWE)

Dr. Donald A. Waite (ACCC Media)

Rev. Ralph Yarnell (IFM).

That meeting reviewed expressions of interest from a growing number of mission agencies and reaffirmed the need for such an organization. The men also discussed final settlement with TAM regarding some remaining records, assets, obligations and equipment.

B. STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES

Why should there be a “Fellowship of Missions?” Here is the earliest purpose statement from the second issue of Focus on Missions, Spring 1971:

“The FELLOWSHIP OF MISSIONS is a fellowship of fundamental, separated missions associated together for the defense of the Gospel and to present a united stand to the world against apostasy in our day.” (p. 2)

From the Preamble to the Provisional Constitution:

“WHEREAS, We believe the times demand the formation of a world-wide mission organization for fellowship and cooperation on the part of Bible-believing missions for the proclamation and defense of the Gospel, for the maintenance of a pure testimony, steadfast and world-wide, to the great facts and revealed truths of historic Christianity, for the accomplishment of tasks that can better be done in cooperation than separately, and to facilitate the discharge of the obligations inherent in the Commission of Christ to His Church to make known the Gospel of Christ to every kindred and tongue and tribe and nation…”

“THEREFORE, the mission agencies forming the FELLOWSHIP OF MISSIONS hereby dedicate themselves to this task … B. To further the testimony of separation from all apostasy and perversion of the Truth as revealed in God’s Word, the Bible; [and, later] E. 1. To act as an accrediting agency for our constituents, and to serve their interests, when needed, in matters pertaining to governments…[and also] … E.3. To arrange mission seminars, special study groups, linguistic or language institutes and similar services as needed; E.4. To furnish to our constituency periodic bulletins or information pertinent to our missionary interests” (p.2)

It is clear from these primeval statements that FOM had great ambitions and godly instincts. If all that was promised was never delivered, it was more a matter of lack of resources than lack of will. As these separatist missions established and fortified their identity as a bloc, distinct from both the new evangelical bloc and several of the other separatist missions of TAM, they also became a smaller bloc. The IFMA and EFMA conglomerate had notable seminars and significant meetings, able to do for their scores of member missions much that the economy of scale denied to FOM. At the same time, FOM personnel learned that it is quite possible for fundamentalists to benefit from many of the seminars and publications of the evangelical orbit without participating in the compromise elements of their overall position. The die was cast. The separatist missions would help each other to stand.

C. THE FIRST MEMBERS

The Fellowship of Missions declared itself in existence at the next meeting, September 25, 1969, at the ABWE headquarters in Philadelphia. This was designated the “first annual meeting.” Most of the agenda dealt with analysis of the proposed Constitution and Articles of Faith. The corrected Constitution was formally accepted as the provisional constitution of FOM for one year. Any formal relationship with the ACCC would await a stabilizing of the ACCC structure, and be reconsidered in the future.

The charter membership of the Executive Committee included: Dr. W.W. Breckenbill, Dr. Carl Elgena, Rev. Robert D. Hayden, Rev. Robert Gilbert, Dr. Joseph Stowell, Rev. Edward E. Schwarz, Rev. Harold Wittig, and Dr. J. Philip Clark.

The eight mission agencies recognized as constituting the charter membership of FOM were, in alphabetical order:

The Association of Baptists for World Evangelism

Baptist Mid-Missions

Bible Methodist Missions

Bible Protestant Missions

The Fellowship of Baptists for Home Missions

Hiawatha Baptist Missions

Independent Faith Missions

Navajo Bible School and Missions

Six of these agencies pledged monthly financial support.

Rev. Bancroft reported that the FOM office was now in his home, with no rent charged, and that the part-time secretary had been cut to half time.

Seventeen representatives attended the Spring meeting of FOM, held April 2, 1970 at the Philadelphia headquarters of ABWE. Rev. Bancroft requested that he be replaced as Administrative Secretary effective May 31 due to his new position on the faculty of Faith Baptist Bible College that Fall.

ABWE also hosted the next meeting on September 24, 1970, where constitutional changes were effected, and revisions of the Doctrinal Statement were referred to a committee for consideration. There was a motion to seek incorporation once the definitive documents were finalized. The new FOM officers were: Dr. Arthur Fetzer, President, Dr. Harold Commons, Vice-President, Rev. Edward C. Bomm, Treasurer, and Rev. Harold E. Haines, Recording Secretary. They voted to change the title of Administrative Secretary to Executive Secretary even while seeking a new man for that position. While the FOM files and equipment had been stored in Johnson City, NY, with Mrs. Wilson, the secretary, it was decided to move all FOM property to the Cleveland offices of Baptist Mid-Missions, with finances handled through Fidelity Bank in Philadelphia.

Subsequent meetings finalized the foundational considerations and reviewed applications from other missions. The Constitution of FOM was officially approved on September 23, 1971 at the meeting hosted by Baptist Mid-Missions in Cleveland. The date of annual meetings was established as the third Thursday of September. In later years, incorporation was finalized in 1985, and the IRS granted recognition as a legitimate non-profit religious corporation in 1989.

D. PUBLICATIONS: FOCUS ON MISSIONS

1. Publication History

The September 24, 1970 FOM meeting determined that there would be an informative bulletin to be called “Focus On Missions.” The first edition of Focus on Missions appeared as the winter edition of 1970. There was a formal voice for fundamentalist missions under the FOM banner, and standing on the Doctrinal Statement published in the Fall 1971 number of Focus On Missions.

By September of 1973, Focus On Missions was published three times a year and was increased from four to six pages. At the annual meeting on September 27, 1973, Miss Bernice Inman, Publications Director for Baptist Mid-Missions, was formally designated as Editor of Focus On Missions, though she had done the editorial work on all of the previous issues. It then enjoyed a circulation of 25,000 copies per issue.

2.Major Issues

“Focus” was primarily intended to expound issues and expose compromise, rather than give news items for the constituent mission agencies. Each mission had its own organs for news to their supporters, so that was not the task of “Focus on Missions.”

a. In the 1970’s

A survey of the first decade of issues shows a major emphasis on providing information for discerning churches in regard to international missions issues, particularly as they impinge on ecclesiastical separation. There are reports on international ecumenical conferences and documents:

The Frankfurt Declaration attacking the World Council of Churches from within,

The EURO-70 campaign of Billy Graham based in Germany with ecumenical, Pentecostal and Catholic cooperation,

COCU, or the Council on Churches Uniting, in its 1971 meeting in Montreal,

The KEY-73 campaign of ecumenical evangelism

The Lausanne Congress on World Evangelism, 1974,

There are reports on specific countries where ecumenical activities and political upheavals have seriously affected missionary work by FOM missions. These were predominantly Zaire, Russia, and Korea.

Occasionally there are membership lists for the several mission organizations with data carefully obtained from source offices and publications: FOM (whose members were listed in every issue), IFMA, EFMA, and DOM (the Department of Overseas Ministries of the National Council of Churches). These lists were welcomed by pastors as reliable reference lists for quick identification of the alignment of the mission agencies who approached them for support.

Numerous articles treat the nature of, and changes in, evangelicalism, fundamentalism and the ecumenical movement. Since the focus of “Focus on Missions” was separatist ministry in international scope, the articles kept pastors and mission families well informed on biblical and historical factors in separatism. There was freedom to draw from a wide variety of church traditions and perspectives on separatism since the outside writers were well identified.

Other articles fostered more effective missionary service: financial procedures and planning, cult and occult movements, facing persecution, uses of alcoholic beverages, Bible translations, missionary children, Liberation Theology and warnings of phony religious appeals. There were clippings and articles to encourage deeper spirituality, on prayer, dedication and the demands of missionary service. In 1973, FOCUS was increased from 4 pages to 6 pages. From its inception, FOCUS has been offered without subscription cost to interested readers and libraries, financed from the faltering general fund of FOM.

Miss Bernice Inman had rare insight and editorial acuity in the selection of sources and in the writing of many key articles herself, generally without a byline. She contributed to the debate and discourse on missions in churches and schools, even in venues which might not have allowed a woman the opportunity to participate so significantly.

b. In the 1980’s

Through most of the 1980’s “Focus” continued on its balanced track: articles of analysis of issues and conferences, warnings of dangerous movements, countries with struggles, statistics of missions, and listings of memberships. The issues changed with the times. Now we find articles on…

Contextualization

Evangelical subgoups

Political Gospels

Humanism

Liberation Theology

Values Clarification and other public education issues

Protestant-Catholic Cooperation

Nationalization

PAW and the ACLU

There are continuing articles on home missions, principles of separation, annotated bibliographies, evangelizing cultists and proper attitudes for separatists.

Bernice Inman continued as the “Editor of Focus on Missions” until 1987 when that duty passed to the new President of FOM. Bernice retired from her ministry with Baptist Mid-Missions as Director of Publications at the end of July of 1991, and within a year was graduated to Heaven. She may well be editing a daily newsletter there.

c. In the 1990’s

Once the editorship of FOCUS left the offices of Baptist Mid-Missions. the luxury of a free editor with ample resources for research and publication no longer pertained to FOM. The cost of printing FOCUS now became a major concern that interfered with the regular publication of the paper. Further, new postal regulations made it necessary that FOM establish its own mailing permit and procedures. These additional logistical burdens and cost factors quickly overloaded the tiny FOM office.

This is not to reflect negatively upon the new President and those who helped him, since it was a complication which overwhelmed the limited staff, already too busy with the correspondence and travels necessary to the office. The issues from 1988 into 1990 were reduced to a single sheet, though of increased frequency, and then it returned to its present format. Today, FOCUS ON MISSIONS is an occasional newsletter of 4 pages, dependent upon available financing. It can still go out in the Pastor’s Mailing of Baptist Mid-Missions to the majority of the readership, with other copies being circulated through the missions of traditions other than Baptist to their constituencies.


III. THE FURTHERING OF FOM

A. HANDS ON THE HELM

FOM has been directed by a committee rather than a person. The officers have been men who were already busy in the leadership of their respective missions, giving time at the expense of their missions for the meetings and correspondence of FOM. Let’s us look at the officers about every five years, though many other fine men from the missions came and went from the larger committee every year. The officers of the committee have been President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and Recording Secretary, with some changes in nomenclature along the way. Once there was a full-time President, the leader of the council was called the Chairman. The number of member missions is noted, including some Associate Members.

1970: Dr. Arthur Fetzer, Dr. Harold Commons, Rev. Edward Bomm, Rev. Harold Haines 8 missions

1975: Rev. James Dersham, Dr. Robert Gilbert, Rev. Edward Bomm, Rev. Harold Haines;10 missions

1980: Dr. William Hopewell, Dr. Raymond Buck, Mr. Robert Auffort, Rev. Harold Haines 14 missions

1985: Dr. William Hopewell, Dr. Raymond Buck, Mr. Robert Auffort, Rev Henry Heijermans. 2 missions

1990: Rev. Henry Heijermans (Pres.), Dr. Robert Jeffcott (Chm.), Dr. Gary Anderson, Rev. William Pierson, Mr. Robert Auffort, Dr. Frank Hultslander.15 missions.

1995: Rev. Henry Heijermans, Dr. Gerald Webber, Dr. Gary Anderson, Rev. William Pierson, Dr. William Smallman, Mr. Robert Auffort. 21 missions.

(As of the September 1995 annual meeting).

B. THE FIRST FULL-TIME EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

By the early 1980’s it was clear that FOM needed a full-time director. The membership had grown to about fifteen missions, many of whom needed administrative guidance. Other interested missions were seeking consultation and information at a rate that the officers, fully engaged in their own missions’ ministries, could not adequately attend to. Rev. Bill Hopewell had served to the limits of his time and resources.

In February of 1983, the FOM board appointed Rev. Austin Lockhart as Executive Secretary of FOM. This was intended as a full-time position, but the necessary financial support did not materialize to make his participation permanent. Dr. Bill Hopewell continued as President into 1987.

In 1986, the FOM elected Rev. Henry Heijermans as its first full-time leader, beginning in 1987, now changing his title to President. His appointment was made possible by the generosity of his supporters through WEFMinistries. Another benefactor contributed significantly toward office and publications expenses, allowing Rev. Heijermans to aggressively pursue his ministry. Rev. Bill Hopewell remained as Chairman of FOM. Mr. Randy Tucker was a very helpful assistant to Rev. Heijermans, even moving with the Heijermans’ to Delaware for a more favorable tax situation. Since Mr. Tucker’s departure in 1994, Dr. Fred Wittman has provided good logistical support in the Delaware office.

There were two major areas of activity for the President. Rev. Heijermans had significant administrative experience and expertise which enabled him to offer guidelines for internal administrative audits and restructuring for maximum effectiveness. This was particularly helpful to the newer, smaller member missions. The other major area of endeavor was recruiting: visiting fundamentalist missions to describe the benefits and costs of associating with FOM.

C. ADDITIONAL MEMBERS

With the appointment of a full-time President, the Fellowship of Missions quickly doubled in the number of member missions. Two appendices list all the member missions recorded in FOCUS ON MISSIONS, in alphabetical order of their present names, and then in date order of their entry into FOM, whether as full or associate members.

IV. THE FUTURE OF FOM

At this meeting, in September of 1995, FOM faces the retirement of its honored President Heijermans in another two years. There are some philosophical and logistical considerations which must be faced.

Q1: Is there a continuing need for FOM?

A1: Unquestionably!! We NEED a forum where we can gather as fellow fundamentalists to encourage and inform one another. Our very philosophy of ministry is under heavy attack, and we need to scrupulously examine the Scriptures and our varied vision statements together to confirm our position for each new generation. Convictions are not perpetuated on paper, only recorded. The great imperatives that drive individuals and organizations must be carefully aligned with Scripture, prioritized in experience, and tuned to contemporary reality. We need to be accountable to one another in this reaffirmation of our governing convictions. None of us can do this alone.

Further, we NEED the input and fellowship of other fundamentalist mission agencies who remain outside FOM, whether by design or by default. Our “fundamentalist mystique” includes the tendency to go it alone, to tough it out ourselves, rather than to join with others. The larger the forum, the deeper the penetration of analysis, challenge and reaffirmation.

Q2: Can we fellowship with those of divergent ecclesiastical traditions?

A2: We’re going to be stuck with each other in Heaven for a long time, so we’d best get started on recognizing each other now! There are other true believers with whom we cannot cooperate, or even fellowship at any formal level. So let’s promote as rich a fellowship as possible with those with whom we have common cause, both in the Gospel and in the defense of the faith in the face of apostasy and compromise.

We still need to understand the difference between fellowship and cooperation. FOM is a forum for fellowship and information and challenge. There is no intent that any of us surrender our distinctive doctrines or identifying features in order to blend our ministries into some bland minimal concoction that none of us would recognize. We can respect one another’s differing positions as fellow fundamentalists both here on the executive level and out on the front lines where our missionaries treat one another with growing respect. On my field of service, we Baptists got along far better with some fundamental Presbyterians than with some neo-evangelical and charismatic Baptists. We needed to know there were others who had not bowed their knees to Ba’al. We needed some personal friendships outside our own ingrown mission family. There are numerous ways we can enjoy fellowship of great mutual benefit without any thought of merging our properly separate church and institutional ministries.

Q3: OK, so where is FOM headed?

1. Structurally, there are two options:

1) Find a new President with appropriate convictions and abilities, and who has adequate funding (or a private oil well), or

2) Revert to governance by committee as was our history for nearly 20 years. It was less than ideal, it taxed the people involved, but it did allow FOM to function and grow.

2. Procedurally, there are two responsibilities:

By design, FOM is designed to provide two basic things to its members: IDENTITY and INFORMATION. Beyond that, it is to remain quietly humming in the background until called upon for aid. None of the member missions seek supervision!

The younger missions are most readily identified by the missions with whom they associate. We fundamentalists are instinctively suspicious and cautious. If there is a “brand name” with credibility for fundamentalists, we want to hover right there to let the glow of that acceptability shine through us. We want “FOM” to be a name associated with a well-defined, scriptural theology of separatist ministry undergirding an evangelistic and local-church-oriented ministry that the churches we serve will TRUST.

b. Information

How do we conduct ministry in the light of changing political scenarios? How do we keep abreast of changing tax laws? Where can small 501(c)(3) organizations get reliable administrative information? How do we define fiscal credibility? To whom can we refer spiritual inquirers who move to areas where our own mission has no ministry?

3. Pragmatically, there are two observations:

a. Keep on track

We have an honorable history; we have served one another well. Our leaders now listed as emeritus or departed are witnesses to the vital convictions that have been our compass through some stormy decades. We don’t honor their memory by just reciting names and dates and accomplishments. We honor them by holding firm to the biblical convictions they modeled so well for us. None of us seeks to have building named for us. The lasting memorials we seek are future generations of Christian leaders who carry on the sacred traditions we learned from those who taught and lived the Bible.

Keep on track!

b. Keep on going!

·FOM is a fitted family for a faithful Father; don’t quit!

· FOM is a linking liaison for a living Lord; don’t quit!

· FOM is a speaking servant for a seeking Spirit; don’t quit.

· FOM is a good gathering for a great God; don’t quit!

Presented at FOM 9/12/95

Updated with minor corrections 10/95


APPENDIX 1: Alphabetical Listing of FOM Member Missions

MEMBER MISSION PRESENT NAME(S) ENTRY EXIT
Association of Baptists for World Evangelism, The 1969
Aviation and Radio Missionary Service (Assoc.) 1992
Baptist Mid-Missions 1969
Baptist Mission of North America: was FBHM & Galilean 1969 1991
Bible Methodist Missions, Inc., The 1969
Bible Protestant Missions, Inc. See Fund. Bible Miss.
Biblical Ministries Worldwide was WEF Ministries to ’88 1980
Buffalo Hebrew Christian Mission, Inc. See Jew. Awarnss 1974
Catskill Mountains Missionary Association 1991
Christian Training and Missionary Fellowship 1991
Christians Evangelizing Catholics 1990
Cleveland Hebrew Mission See Remnant Ministries
Continental Bapt. Miss: was Hiawatha Bapt. Miss. to 1983 1969
Eastern Independent Church Mission 1992
Evangel Bible Mission 1990
Evangelical Baptist Missions 1972 1974
Faith Baptist Indian Mission, Inc. 1972 1974
Fellowship Baptist Mission 1983 1984
Fellowship of Baptists for Home Missionslater Baptist Mission of North America, 1985 (Merger)
Fundamental Bible Missions was Bible Prot. Miss. to ’94 1969
Galilean Baptist Missionlater Baptist Mission of North America, 1985 (Merger)
Gospel Outreach, Inc. 1992*
Hiawatha Baptist Missions, see Continental
Independent Associated Missions (Assoc.) 1991
Independent Faith Mission, Inc. 1969
International Outreach, Inc. (Associate Members to 1990) 1985
Jewish Awareness Ministries was Buffalo Heb. Chrn. Misn
Mexican Gospel Mission 1990
Missions to Military 1992
Navajo Bible School and Mission, Inc., The 1969 1982
Remnant Ministries Was Cleveland Hebrew Miss. to ’92 1972
Spanish World Gospel Mission 1976 1995
Titus International Institute (Assoc.) 1990
WEF Ministries, later Biblical Ministries Worldwide, 1988 1980
Westminster Biblical Missions 1980
World Missionary Outreach Ministries 1991


APPENDIX 2: FOM Member Missions in Date order of Entry

MEMBER MISSION PRESENT NAME(S) ENTRY EXIT
Association of Baptists for World Evangelism, The 1969
Baptist Mid-Missions 1969
Baptist Mission of North America: was FBHM, Galilean 1969 1991
Bible Methodist Missions, Inc., The 1969
Continental Bapt. Miss: was Hiawatha Bapt. Miss. to 1983 1969
Fundamental Bible Missions was Bible Prot. Miss. to ’94 1969
Independent Faith Mission, Inc. 1969
Navajo Bible School and Mission, Inc., The 1969 1982
Evangelical Baptist Missions 1972 1974
Faith Baptist Indian Mission, Inc. 1972 1974
Remnant Ministries Was Cleveland Hebrew Miss. to ’92 1972
Buffalo Hebrew Christian Mission, Inc. See Jew. Awarnss 1974
Spanish World Gospel Mission 1976 1995
Biblical Ministries Worldwide was WEF Ministries to ’88 1980
WEF Ministries, later Biblical Ministries Worldwide, 19?? 1980
Westminster Biblical Missions 1980
Fellowship Baptist Mission 1983 1984
International Outreach, Inc. (Associate Members to 1990) 1985
Christians Evangelizing Catholics 1990
Evangel Bible Mission 1990
Mexican Gospel Mission 1990
Titus International Institute (Assoc.) 1990
Catskill Mountains Missionary Association 1991
Christian Training and Missionary Fellowship 1991
Independent Associated Missions (Assoc.) 1991
World Missionary Outreach Ministries 1991
Aviation and Radio Missionary Service (Assoc.) 1992
Eastern Independent Church Mission 1992
Missions to Military 1992
Gospel Outreach, Inc. 1992*


BIBLIOGRAPHY OF RESOURCES
on the History of the FOM

HISTORICAL ARCHIVES, Baptist Mid-Missions 1945- Correspondence files relative to TAM and FOM

FRIZEN, Edwin L, Jr. 1992 75 Years of the IFMA. Pasadena: William Carey Library

HOPEWELL, William J., Jr. 1963 Missionary Emphasis of the GARBC, The. Schaumburg IL: Regular Baptist Press.

ICCC 1965 6th Plenary Congress, Geneva, Switzerland, August 5-11, 1965. Collingswood, NJ: International Council of Christian Churches.

1990 ICCC 13th World Congress, Aug 8-17, 1990, Vancouver, BC. Collingswood, NJ: International Council of Christian Churches.

INMAN, Bernice, Editor (through 1986) 1970- Focus On Missions, various issues from 1970 through 1994. Cleveland: Baptist Mid-Missions.

WYMAN, Mark D. 1993 “The Fight of Dr. Carl T. McIntire with the American Council of Christian Churches at the 1970 Annual Meeting in Pasadena, CA,” unpublished term paper based on extensive interviews with Dr. John Millheim and research in his correspondence files, presented to Dr. William H. Smallman, visiting instructor at Baptist Bible Seminary.