Who We Are
Identity and Mission
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Kentucky (CBFKY) is a fellowship of churches and individuals who share a commitment to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ. Our mission is to equip and empower Kentucky Baptist churches and Christians, cultivate partnerships, and engage in missions.
Jesus Christ is the center of our life and work. God is our guide, revealed in scripture, discerned through the Holy Spirit in conversation with the gathered people of God.Therefore we value:
our heritage as Christians and Baptists, including the principles of soul competency, priesthood of all believers, local church autonomy, freedom to read and interpret scripture, and the separation of church and state;
missions, social ministries, and evangelism;
diversity and openness to any believer God calls to leadership and ministry;
a partnership model of church life and ministry and our partnership with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.
Our vision is to:
connect more churches and individuals with hands-on, face-to-face mission opportunities;
create partnerships among diverse churches and people;
become a more diverse and intergenerational fellowship;
link congregations and individuals with educational support;
assist in the creation of new churches.
Based in Louisville, Kentucky, CBF Kentucky is a statewide organization that includes many individuals and churches. We are governed by an elected Coordinating Council of laity and clergy from across the state. Our mission and ministry are guided by various work groups of the council in partnership with the staff.
CBF Kentucky organized to..."Work together as partners who belong to God."
Paul admonished the church at Corinth to: "Let all things be done decently and in order." (1 Corinthians 14:40)
CBF Kentucky was birthed on April 19, 1991 at St. Matthew's Baptist Church. We are a non-profit Christian Organization with a focus on missions and ministry. We are a fellowship of individuals and churches.
A Coordinating Council, made up of clergy, laity, men and women from across Kentucky, guides our work. Five officers provide oversight for the work of the council.
Moderator - leads the council, presides at meetings
Moderator-elect - responsible for planning the program for the annual meeting
Immediate Past Moderator - chairs the nominating committee
Secretary - keeps minutes of all meetings
Treasurer - has charge of receipts and monies of KBF
Currently, members of the council serve on one of three work groups:
Administrative - Develops and oversees annual budget and provides accountability and support to personnel.
Ministries - Strengthens our community by utilizing our resources and promoting our strengths.
Missions - Leads us to engage in missions locally and internationally.
Chairs of these work groups join the officers to make up an Executive Committee. For more information about CBF Kentucky Leadership, click here.
Frequently Asked Questions
How is CBF Kentucky related to the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship?
CBF Kentucky is one of 18 state and regional organizations that relate to the CBF. Like our churches, we are an autonomous body; we elect our own leaders and make our own decisions as to how we will operate. We are responsible for our own finances and governance. We do cooperate in mission and ministry with the CBF. Learn about CBF here.
Why do CBFKY and CBF exist?
During the ‘70's and ‘80's, the Southern Baptist Convention moved more and more towards Fundamentalism. In 1990, the moderate Baptists, whose voice had been stifled in SBC gatherings, held a conference in Atlanta to discuss the possibility of forming a separate organization. The basic disagreement centered on three things: 1) a hierarchical structure that threatened to erase equality among Baptists; 2) an interpretation of scripture that denied the possibility that God might call women to pastoral roles; and 3) an insistence that the Bible be held to a strict literalist interpretation, denying the right of the individual to draw conclusions about scripture based on his/her own prayerful study. The support for a separate organization at the state and national level was overwhelming, and by 1991, the Kentucky Baptist Fellowship (now CBFKY) and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship were born.
Is CBF a denomination?
People who align with the CBF believe that as Baptists, we adhere to such principles as the Lordship of Christ, the authority of the Scriptures, the priesthood of all believers, local church autonomy, separation of church and state, baptism of believers, and religious liberty. CBF has therefore not identified as a denomination, but as a fellowship of churches and individuals who hold these beliefs in common. These beliefs also include celebrating diversity, upholding women who are called by God to pastoral roles, and the non-authoritarian role of the pastor. This hybrid organization has been referred to by some as a denomi-network.
What does the CBF Kentucky do?
CBF Kentucky is a fellowship of churches and individuals who are committed to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ. Our mission is three-fold: 1) to help churches partner with one another and with other organizations that share a similar philosophy and goal; 2) to provide resources for churches and individuals as they do their work; and 3) to encourage involvement in missions and ministries in local communities, throughout the state, and globally.
How many CBF Kentucky cooperating churches are there?
Currently there are about 50 churches that cooperate with CBF Kentucky in varying degrees. Some churches support CBF Kentucky and CBF totally; others are dually aligned, sending some funds to CBF Kentucky and CBF and others to CBF Kentucky and the Southern Baptist Convention. Besides these churches, there are also many individuals who support CBF Kentucky although they may be members of churches who do not support CBF Kentucky.
How can I find a CBF Kentucky church near me?
Click here to find an interactive map of CBF Kentucky churches.
What statewide events does CBF Kentucky hold?
The biggest event is the Spring Gathering, which is held in April on a Friday and Saturday. We also have periodic gatherings including children's mission days, youth missions weekends, young adult retreats, and Christian education conferences. Various mission events are held throughout the year, such as “Extreme Build” in early June, and our "I Love Morocco" dinner in August.
How may a church or individual support CBF Kentucky?
There are two ways to support CBF Kentucky. One is through your involvement; the other is through your gifts. Attending the Spring Gathering is a first step in being involved. Taking part in other CBF Kentucky-sponsored events either as individuals or as a church helps to keep you aware of what is going on in CBF Kentucky life. Contact the CBF Kentucky office by email to be sure you are on the mailing list and that your email address is on file. Watch the web site for opportunities to be involved.Your gifts are necessary for CBF Kentucky to do its work. Churches may choose to put CBF Kentucky in their budget and send money regularly. Individuals and churches may send money directly to the CBF Kentucky office. Contact the office for envelopes.
With which theological schools does CBF/CBFKY partner?
Unlike other Baptist bodies, CBF and CBF Kentucky does not “own” any theological schools, but rather partners with them. CBF has a number of partner seminaries, and we are proud that the Baptist Seminary of Kentucky in Georgetown (a primary partner of CBF Kentucky) is one of them.
Does CBF or CBF Kentucky publish its own missions and Bible Study curriculum?
CBF does publish graded missions material. For a complete description of these materials and to find out how to order them, click here. For other study materials, CBF partners with Smyth and Helwys and Cokesbury. Also visit the links on this web site for more published material.
Does CBF Kentucky and CBF affirm women in ministry?
Both CBF Kentucky and the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship support and affirm women as ordained ministers.
An essential partner in our Baptist life is Baptist Women in Ministry or BWIM.
CBF Kentucky supports the annual Martha Stearns Marshall Month of Preaching. Held in February of each year, this event encourages churches to invite a woman to preach during one of the February Sundays. Click here for more information.