A friend asked me this question on Facebook messenger. Why can’t we just make a motion and hold a vote to fire Ronnie Floyd from the Executive Committee?
His leadership during these troubling times has been anything but unifying and inspirational. While conflagrations in the SBC have been igniting all around us, he has sent out articles about public invitations, and reminded us that “now is the time to lead.” We need an inspiring statesman to draw us together but Ronnie seems more a flailing politician. There is a rising sentiment that the heart of the problem in SBC is the Executive Committee (leadership) and that we cannot move forward with Ronnie Floyd as our CEO because of his failures.
Having said that, the messengers of the 2021 Annual Meeting have no power to do anything about Ronnie Floyd’s position with the Executive Committee. We can ask him some tough questions (perhaps someone will). We can vote for a convention-mandated investigation of the Executive Committee’s handling of the abuse issue (under Mike Stone’s chairmanship). We can begin the slow process of replacing trustees who either are part of the problem or won’t stand up and we can encourage the trustees who will do the right thing.
We cannot fire Ronnie.
The SBC is set up so that each entity or organization is separate and not under the direct authority of the messengers of the annual meetings or the EC. We elect the trustees (and can remove them) and we authorize the budget, but the trustees of the entity oversee that entity.
It is probably best that it is this way. A single year’s messengers could be whipped into an emotional frenzy and take an unwise vote to fire a leader based on faulty information. There are people who want Ronnie gone now and are frustrated that we cannot just make a motion in Nashville and hold a vote. We cannot and should not.
I would like to make two things clear.
1. I think Ronnie Floyd needs to retire from the Executive Committee. He is right – now is the time to lead and he has not done so. His credibility is low and an announcement in the next few months that he is retiring would be welcomed by this pastor.
2. I am glad this is not coming up for a vote in Nashville. It should not. This is an emotional time for the SBC and it is no time for us to taking a vote like that. As frustrating as it might be, there is wisdom in our polity which does not allow us to vote to remove Ronnie Floyd.
This is our way and as frustrating as it might be it is wise.