William Thornton is an SBC pastor, recently retired, who blogs as the "SBC Plodder". I became acquainted with William during the early days of my blogging when I was a regular reader of the Baptist Life forums, where William moderated the SBC News and Trends forum at Baptist Life. In the early days of my blogging, it was at the BL Forums, along with the New BBC Open Forum blog and Wade Burleson's blog, where I for the first time saw Christians engaging in honest discussions of problems in the SBC and evangelicalism.
I enjoy William's blog and recommend it to my readers. William is a conservative, but he doesn't worry about parroting the CR party-line on SBC matters. Behind Wade, William is my favorite SBC-pastor blogger.
I will resume my regular schedule of posting very soon, with an important announcement just around the corner. As I move beyond the legal battles of the last three years, I have quite a bit more to share of my experiences that will be of great interest to my readers. The Watchdog will be joining forces with another prominent SBC blogger, helping to ensure the FBC Jax Watchdog keeps going strong in being a watchdog of the powerful mega church pastors and their churches. Sorry, pastors, the FBC Jax Watchdog is about to go plural.
Below is William's article from his blog. He is right about the personal cost. I don't blog about that, but those close to me know the personal cost I and my family have paid in me not backing down when the screws were applied in 2008 and 2009. I am proud of what has been accomplished through this blog, and intend on it being an even greater force in the future.
Blogging When There is a Personal Cost, by William Thornton
There are hacker and plodder bloggers like me, folks who sometimes foolishly think everyone else might like to drink from their incredibly deep wells of wisdom, wit, and insight. Take these with a bit of skepticism and not always seriously.
Then there are a few bloggers who feel compelled to address what they see as genuine wrongs and serious issues in their churches or in denominational life and who do so at a considerable personal cost.
While I appreciate a number of others, I can only think of two whom I would classify as the latter: David Montoya and Tom Rich.
David Montoya is a pastor and is (or was) the Spiritual Samurai, an odd name for a Baptist blogger in Texas. I've written about him in the past. His ire and indignation over wrongs in the Baptist General Convention of Texas led to the open knowledge of an appalling scandal with BGCT missions money and also led to his being sued. He says he is quitting. I hope not.
David hasn't always been right about things and sometimes says things he has to retract but if not for him I doubt the BGCT valleygate scandal would have been uncovered. I'm not so sure that many SBCers in my lifetime have successfully brought to light such an important matter.
I admire him.
Tom Rich is a layman, the FBCJax Watchdog, one of the early church/pastor critic blogs and to date the most well-known of this genre.
Tom got stirred up by a pastor change at his church and some of the things associated with it and started blogging about it. As is well known, the church played hardball with him and his family, law enforcement got involved, lawsuits were filed and, only recently, finally settled.
I don't buy all of his stuff but his bull-doggedness probably changed the way high profile pastors (those with an ounce of sense which would be most but not all of them) look at some of their church critics. I admire him for not shutting up and going away when his former church ratcheted up the pressure on him.
Any yahoo can belt out their opinions on stuff but there are a few people who do so at considerable personal cost.