Founders Fraternals FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions
About Founders Fraternals

  1. What are Founders Fraternals about?
  2. Who is invited to the Founders Fraternals?
  3. Who leads the local Founders Fraternals?
  4. How is a Founders Fraternal financed?
  5. How do the Fraternals secure speakers, select topics, and pay speakers?
  6. How often should the Fraternals meet?
  7. When should Founders Fraternals meet?
  8. What about book tables?
  9. How may we keep up with other Founders Fraternals?
  10. Should we tape the meetings?
  11. Who will ultimately answer for your group?
  12. Whom should I contact for more information?

  1. What are Founders Fraternals about?

    The Founders Fraternals are intended to promote:

    • Personal holiness in the lives of those who pastor the churches
    • Sincere prayer for the pastors and the work of God in the region
    • Warm fellowship and lasting friendships among like-minded spiritual leaders
    • Understanding of the great biblical doctrines once espoused and proclaimed freely by our forebears (i.e., the doctrines of grace)
    • Encouragement in the proclamation of the gospel in the region and around the world
    • Interest in the lives of our early leaders and the lessons we can learn from them
    • Obedience to the standards and practices of church life prescribed by the Bible (i.e. expositional preaching, church discipline, Scriptural leadership patterns, Word-regulated worship, biblical evangelism, regenerate church membership, etc.)

  2. Who is invited to the Founders Fraternals?

    The pastors/leaders of local SBC churches are invited. Ministerial students, denominational leaders, evangelists, retired ministers and missionaries, and professors are encouraged to come. Pastors from other denominations are also welcome, but will note that the discussions will sometimes address Baptist issues. The meeting is a fraternal and does not promote the concept of women in pastoral ministry.


  3. Who leads the local Founders Fraternals?

    The best course of action is for two or three like-minded men to comprise a leadership team. These should be men who have an appreciation for the Reformation doctrines of our early Baptist leaders, and who have a burden for the biblical revitalization of the churches and its pastors. These two or three men might be on the same pastoral staff or may be from nearby churches. One man should take the leadership of this group and of the whole in order to secure its ongoing effectiveness.


  4. How is a Founders Fraternal financed?

    It is helpful for a fund to be established within the bank account of a local church (often the leader’s church). Money can be received by offerings taken at the fraternals, through designated gifts (especially by people in the churches who may believe strongly that pastors need this kind of meeting), or even by special church offerings. The leadership group will often contribute more heavily to the expenses, but the costs should actually be minimal.


  5. How do the Fraternals secure speakers, select topics, and pay speakers?

    It will not be surprising to find that many of the speakers you ask will gladly make sacrifices to help promote the aims of the group. Most of the men you wish to have will carry a deep burden for the same issues that concern you. In order to reduce expense, sound reformed leaders will speak to your group when they are in the area at a local church or conference. You may wish to ask the participants in the fraternal to give the names of the various speakers who will be in their churches over the next year or two. Contact the speaker well in advance and ask if he can adjust his schedule to speak to the fraternal. Local men, given enough prior notice, may also make a major contribution to the group. By referring to the speakers from past annual conferences on the web site, you may find some possible leaders and topics for your meetings.

    It is helpful to have historical, biographical, theological, and pastoral themes along with pure exposition during the year. Sometimes outside speakers may be asked to take two sessions or more while they are in town. For the biographical sessions, the leaders should not forget both our early Baptist leaders and other men and woman who have contributed significantly to reform and spiritual growth.

    If a leader is asked to speak from outside the group, it is customary to offer them an honorarium of something between $100-250. Usually no extra travel expense will be added since you will be using most of your speakers when they are already in town.


  6. How often should the Fraternals meet?

    It is reasonable to think that a fraternal should meet at least once per quarter, but some will wish to meet monthly or bi-monthly. December is often a difficult time to meet as are the summer months. Eight meetings per year, if meeting monthly, would be reasonable. Sometimes these meetings may vary due to the accessibility of the speakers and when they are in the area. As the group develops, a mailing to the whole group giving the times and speakers would be helpful. In fact, mailings prior to each meeting would help promote attendance.


  7. When should Founders Fraternals meet?

    The decision for the day of meeting is entirely optional, however it is usually best to meet on a Tuesday or Wednesday. By doing so, the pastor’s Monday “day off” is not disturbed. Most pastors prefer meeting earlier rather than later in the week.

    Generally it is a good practice to have the men bring their own “brown bag” lunch for a meeting beginning at 11:30 or 11:45 a.m. After the message or lecture, the group can continue with lunch and questions simultaneously. It could end around 2 p.m. On occasions double sessions with certain speakers will cause you to change the schedule accordingly. The leaders create trust by starting and ending the meetings on schedule.

    The fraternal may wish to have some meetings which are out of the norm. For instance, an occasional pastor/wife retreat could be helpful, or a day-long fraternal meeting with a special guest.


  8. What about book tables?

    It is a great help to provide a book table once the group is up and running. This could be the concern of a local church or could be done by the fraternal funds. Cost of books should be as low as possible and the books should promote the interests of the fraternal only. If a layman or church wishes to contribute the start-up money for the book table, the leaders of the fraternal should nonetheless be in charge of the selection so as to promote the interests of the group.


  9. How may we keep up with other Founders Fraternals?

    The Founders Ministries will maintain a web page for information about your fraternal (www.founders.org). On this page you will be able to read about what other fraternals are doing and will be able to put the latest news about your group and the upcoming meeting information. The web site also has a Founder’s Friendly Churches list which will help you find other interested pastors in your area. Each group is encouraged to report after every meeting.


  10. Should we tape the meetings?

    If at all possible, tape the meetings for your own fraternal history. Keep a list of available tapes for the churches. If the group is small and you find that meeting in a more comfortable setting than the auditorium is best, be sure and arrange for the taping accordingly. Forcing a speaker to stand behind a pulpit in order to get a tape recording when addressing a small group is difficult for the group and the speaker.


  11. Who will ultimately answer for your group?

    It goes without saying that Founders Ministries cannot be responsible for the actions of any individual group. We are hopeful that the interests of the group will correspond to that of the movement as a whole. Founders Ministries is prepared to help you if you have questions about the setting up fraternals.


  12. Whom should I contact for more information?

    Our Executive Director, Tom Ascol, can help you. You may reach him at Founders Ministries, PO Box 150931, Cape Coral, FL 33915, (941) 772-1400, editor@founders.org.