Since its beginning, IMB has had one goal: bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the lost peoples of the world. At the first Southern Baptist Convention in 1845, the Foreign Mission Board (FMB) was founded as part of “one sacred effort, for the propagation of the Gospel.” Southern Baptist churches believed that by working cooperatively, they could accomplish more for God’s kingdom. That belief still stands strong today.
Empowered by an enlarged worldview and the support of the Cooperative Program, which was founded in 1925, Southern Baptists responded with 1,000 missionaries serving in 1955. In the 1960s, FMB initiated new opportunities for people to answer the call to foreign missions, through programs such as Missionary Associates and Journeyman.
IMB has shifted focus from geographic countries to people groups, with a concerted effort to start church-planting movements among unreached peoples. Technological advances have provided unprecedented opportunities for missionaries to spread the Gospel, and Southern Baptists have reached into areas previously considered forbidden by political barriers.
IMB’s history continues to develop each day. Strategies to reach the world change as the world changes. What has not changed is the strong commitment of Southern Baptists to join the Author of history in His redemptive movement to advance His Gospel among all peoples.
Crawford Avenue continues to be in the top 10% of per capita giving to the IMB among SBC churches. We also have one CABC member serving in South Asia through the IMB.