THE Baptist Union of Great Britain is to undergo significant
restructuring to address a £1.2 million deficit.
Its governing body, the Baptist Union Council, has announced
widespread reforms of its central structures, cutting staff at its
headquarters in Didcot from 46 to 32.
The posts of general secretary and general manager will also be
merged, and a new leadership team will replace the current senior
management team. Some of the work currently done in the national
office will, in future, be carried out in regional
The changes follow the findings of a year-long review, which was
prompted by the deficit. In a statement, the Baptist Union said
that the changes sought to make the Church "more fitting for
mission in the 21st century".
The Revd Jonathan Edwards will leave his post as general
secretary next year. "This is a very painful time," he said, "but
it is clearly right for the Baptist Union to make serious financial
cuts. My colleagues and I at Baptist House have all done our work
out of a profound sense of God's call, and we appreciate the
sensitivity and support of the denomination as we seek to discover
his will for our future.
"My visits around the country constantly remind me of the
energy, initiative, and deep commitment of churches, colleges, and
associations to share in the mission of Christ."
The planned changes will ensure that the budget is balanced in
2013, the treasurer of the Baptist Union, Malcolm Broad, said.
Although some Baptist congregations have experienced a rise in
attendance, there has been a steep drop in membership of Baptist