A Letter from Steve Scoggins
Anyone connected with Fruitland knows what a unique and strategic place Fruitland Baptist Bible College has in the kingdom of God! Its students are a mixture of those right out of High School along side those who are called into the ministry in the middle of their lives. Fruitland is unashamedly conservative in its theology but also practical in its teaching. Its professors are people who are currently serving churches who give one day a week to training future leaders. They are not teaching “academic theories” but know from their own practice what is needed in the local churches.
Our entire denomination is facing a crisis because of the decline in giving through the Cooperative Program. The Cooperative Program has been the life line of all we do in the SBC. Yet the percentage given by local churches in North Carolina has now decreased to 3% per church. All of our ministries in North Carolina have had to receive major cuts because of this decline. No school in the SBC has been more dependent on Cooperative Program gifts than Fruitland. We do not graduate wealthy alumni who can give and keep us going. We graduate people who will serve the small churches, the country churches. The bad news is that the decline in giving to the CP in the state of North Carolina will likely only get worse. I pray that somehow we can reintroduce the value of the CP to the next generation of SBC pastors so they will be advocates for this lifeline for missions in their churches!
I want to rally all of the friends of Fruitland to do something to ensure its future strength in training people for ministry. Could you mark Sunday, July 19th, on your Calendar and celebrate a “Fruitland Day” in your churches? During that day we would ask you to take a love offering up for Fruitland and send it to the college. We will send you material that can help your members understand what a unique place Fruitland maintains in the kingdom of God. We also need you to encourage students to consider coming to Fruitland to train for the ministry. It is not only one of the best places to train for ministry, it is the most economical school to do such training. The current cost for a full load for a quarter at Fruitland is $625. Many schools charge nearly that much for each hour of education!
I want to thank you for your help in standing by Fruitland! It will be because of people like yourself who love Fruitland that will ensure that this school will be able to continue its great work into the future!
Yours in Christ,
Pastor, Hendersonville First Baptist Church