Those poor overworked boys at UCG have had to cut out all kinds of expenditures that have made life so much more difficult. Poor things!
Financial Report—Aaron Dean
The Church is currently receiving 5 percent more income than last year, which is a blessing, but it doesn’t make up for our current allocated expenditures. The special offering has so far reached almost $400,000. He explained that we are not in a bind to pay our current bills and that the main concern is our cash flow. None of our spending has been for anything except caring for the Church and preaching the gospel—the business of the Church.
The reason for the special offering letter was due to the reduction in bank balances by the use of reserves to care for pastorates and to preach the gospel. In losing a third of our prior income ($7 to $9 million per year which is it), we knew that the planned use of reserves could not go on indefinitely and that we would have to cut back in due course. It did cost more than we initially anticipated to have ministers visit churches without pastors until workable solutions could be found. Extra travel and accrued mileage was necessary to allay unfounded rumors of doctrinal change.
We did not replace every pastor that left, and have reorganized several circuits to be more efficient. Our annual payroll was $8.1 million before the split, and last year it was only at $5.7 million—even though we were serving virtually the same number of congregations. Additionally, costs for international subsidies, international Good News (GN) subscriptions (plus booklets) were growing and all being funded by the Church in the U.S. We didn’t try to expand, but we did spend a lot to maintain operations and our congregations in America and internationally. Current growth will allow a reasonable level of service even with the budget realignments.
We are now seeking to increase cash balances to avert projected cash-flow shortages before the annual Holy Days. We are cutting nearly $2 million to have a balanced budget. Since it was a special offering, it will be not be listed as regular income or used in projections for budgeting next year.