Questions for the “Prince of Parliamentarians” – SBC Voices

That prince would not be Barry McCarty, nor my favorite parliamentarian, Amy Whitfield, but Patrick Hues Mell (1814-1888) who was president of the SBC longer than any other man, two terms in total for 15 years.

I have been to many SBC meetings, major annual meetings, state conventions, and association meetings. I chaired many church business meetings. The most interesting thing about the parliamentary procedure was when the president was Charles Stanley. There were difficult parliamentary matters then.

Probably the worst outlook for parliamentarians came with the recent live stream of the Nashville Executive Committee meeting. Rolland Slade presided, but Barry McCarty immediately gave parliamentary instructions on every issue. This isn’t an objection to Slade or McCarty, but if the camera puts them on screen, McCarty behind President Slade, it just looks like McCarty is running things.

During later disputed EC meetings that were zoomed in, the problem was resolved. McCarty was almost always off camera.

But this is 2021, not 1884. In correspondence with others. Mellom, forever Prince of Parliamentarians, a JH Wideman from Bradley County, SC, questioned the verdicts in which Mell excluded from the proposal for the election of officers “viva voce.” Voting was normal. Wideman informed Mella that his decisions had been adopted by the moderator of his local association, citing the eminent parliamentarian in his remarks calling only for a vote.

This would be when association meetings were important and well attended. Who cares? And besides the pastor, the moderator of the association, he was twice my highest office of the SBC. Unpaid, unfortunately, except for a free meal from the host church.

Wondering what else. Mell said about remote voting?


Photo from the Wiki list of the president of SBC, and why is Adrian not wearing a coat and tie on that list? I doubt he ever stood behind a pulpit or a rostrum without one.

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