We are less than one hundred days out from the SBC Annual Meeting in Orlando and from a contested presidential election between Al Mohler and Randy Adams. Mohler is ubiquitous in SBC life from his position as president of our oldest seminary, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Adams is CEO of the Northwest Baptist Convention which covers Oregon, Washington, and northern Idaho and was listed as having 417 churches in 2018.
Adams has been active in writing and tweeting about SBC matters and his personal positions. I’d say that I haven’t seen a candidate as actively campaigning for SBC president as Adams. I don’t criticize it; just making an observation.
Al Mohler said something to the effect that he has more words out than any living Southern Baptist, so SBCers can arrive in Orlando and have more than enough information from him to make their choice. I think Al gets up in the morning and before his feet hit the floor he’s already put out a couple of daily briefings. Pick an issue. He has positions outlined on it…
…except, I haven’t seen Al Mohler’s view of the use of non-disclosure agreements in convention life. Does Southern Seminary use these? What does Al think about them?
Randy Adams says
The SBC and its entities should end the use of, and recall, all remaining Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs). We must not hide corruption and we will not protect predators at the cost of harming victims.
I’ve been told over the years that the SBC is like schools, hospitals, and other secular organizations in their routine employment of NDAs. Just legal protections and stuff, blah, blah, blah (and sorry for all the technical language).
NDAs have become a big issue in regard to sex abuse. Victims are paid off and have to clam up. Predators can move right on with their lives and not worry about their past behavior.
In SBC life, I’d guess that the use of NDAs perpetuates and enables corruption and sinful behavior. It’s been a long time since I thought trusting entity trustees was a solution to much of anything.
Were I to go to Orlando, I’d almost certainly vote for Al Mohler but it doesn’t prevent me from saying this is one thing I like about Randy Adams. I don’t see his position against NDAs does much except to put the matter forward for discussion. He can’t direct trustees of entities to eschew them. But he’s exactly correct, “we must not hide corruption.” There are rascals in SBC life that ought to be exposed and not protected.
I have no idea of the extent of the use of NDAs in Southern Baptist life. I’d guess the practice is widespread, although I only know of a few examples. Guess that’s the point, secrecy.
…so, let the lawyers start pontificating here.