Missouri Baptists Bring Windermere Conference Center Back Into Convention

CAMDENTON, Mo. (BP) — The Windermere Baptist Conference Center (WBCC) may have a new lease on life after being bought off the steps of the Camden County (Mo.) Courthouse Dec. 11, 2019, following the campground’s “non-judicial foreclosure.”

Straightway Holdings, Inc. (SHI), a subsidiary of the Missouri Baptist Foundation (MBF), put in the highest bid, gaining ownership of Windermere for $4.745 million. The property was purchased with a loan from WatersEdge Ministry Services, the Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma’s provider of church loan and investment services.

According to Neil Franks, president of the MBF and SHI, Windermere has now been leased to Arukah Cove, Inc., a “newly formed non-profit corporation whose sole mission is to act as the tenant management corporation operating the Windermere Baptist Conference Center.”

“God has used Windermere to change countless lives in the past, and we believe the Lord will do greater things still in the days ahead,” Franks said. “The commitment to Christ-honoring recreational ministry of the past will continue to be the priority.

“When we learned of the likely foreclosure of Windermere, our board of trustees believed that Missouri Baptists did not want to see the camp grounds sold and potentially redeveloped for secular purposes. That is when we took action,” Franks added. “We felt that the opportunity for securing the land and stabilizing the future of the current ministry more than justified the purchase now, even if Straightway doesn’t own it forever.”

Beginning in 2001, the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) sought the return of 1300 acres of Windermere real estate, which was removed from MBC control when Windermere’s board secretly voted to become self-perpetuating, along with the boards of four other MBC entities.

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Source: Baptist Press