Tradition, Truth, and Transparency

In a recent conversation with a group of Korean-American pastors and elders, I asked why Korean-American churches were not applying for ECFA-accreditation and choosing to walk in the light with regard to financial accountability and transparency. They replied, “It’s our culture!” Carefully I continued. “What about your culture prohibits you?” At first, they said, “Korean churches loves their pastors, but we do not want anyone to know how much we pay our pastors.” Then they added, “We also do not want people to know how much money we have.” Another reasoned, “If financial mismanagement issues arise, we lose face, so […]

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Building Trust and Trustworthy Leadership

Trust is in high demand and short supply globally. Why? It’s hard to gain and easy to lose. With trust, ministries create confidence to participate in God’s work. People give sacrificially and serve voluntarily.  Without trust, churches split, ministries shut down, staff quit, and giving dries up. In Trust: The Firm Foundation for Kingdom Fruitfulness, ECFA President Dan Busby writes, “A Christ-centered ministry that lacks trust is like a teenager running through a fireworks factory with a lit blowtorch. It isn’t whether something is going to blow up—it’s just a matter of when.” Sadly, ministries are blowing up daily for […]

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Accountability and Generosity

The connection between accountability and generosity can be traced back to the biblical pattern set by the Apostle Paul in his international orchestration of the Jerusalem collection from A.D. 53-58. In his correspondence, we find these four practical points for modern application. I suggest God’s workers all over the world follow Paul’s example to promote accountability and encourage greater generosity. Provide Consistent Directions for God’s People – Notice Paul did not beg for money, which would imply they were owners of financial resources. Instead, he taught them basic financial stewardship. He instructed people set aside whatever extra they earn to […]

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Accountability and Communication

Accountability is making the whole process of the organization open to scrutiny. Unfortunately, most people seem to think that accountability is having their accounts properly audited and submitted to the board of directors. I think we need to go beyond financial rectitude to proper accountability where confidence is built in the organization leading to greater confidence in giving to the organization. In fact, financial accountability only gives confidence that all expenses have proper bills and all the monies spent are accounted for. This gives no confidence in the organization or the expenses they incur. For example, if an expense of […]

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