Thanks for sharing this information... as mission commission chairperson for our church, I find this information very useful and most disturbing.
Do you have information as to the breakdown for "other benevolences"?
Has the General Board of Global Missions offered any explanation for why they have deemed it appropriate to keep such a large surplus while there are so many potentially useful means to dispose of it in service to God's kingdom?
Editor: http://www.gcfa.org/GrantsTOC.htm for a breakdown of Non-UMC benevolences.
From: JIM BEISE firstname.lastname@example.org
This is very imformative data, and with the helpful graphics, a valuable resource for me. I am a missionary, returning to France with the MSUM. These figures make me wonder why it is so hard for my wife and I to find the funding we need so that we can get on with the work to which God has called us. We are currently about 58% funded. Keep up the good work. I hope this kind of information will impact the giving of some of the churches we are in contact with...
That they might know Him, Jim Beise, Discipleship Pastor, La Croix UMC
The report on the General Board of Global Ministries reveals an agency that is totally out of control and certainly is not carrying out the missionary madate of the UMC. This report is sinful and obscene.
I just returned from a three week mission trip to India. People in India told me that Lucknow Christian College (university) used to be one of the best and had a beautiful campus. Partly due to lack of financial support from GBGM this fine institution has become an eyesore. GBGM could change this with support funds and never miss it. But they refuse to do so.
I believe it is time that the people of the UMC and groups such as the Confessing Movement need to to say to agencies such as GBGM, you do not need our money. You are not carrying out the world mission task. Therefore, you do not need a World Service Apportionment. We are going to send an amount equal to our World Service Apportionment to agencies where the Gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed and people are invited into Christ's kingdom.
Ronald A. Greilich
From: Joe McManus Joe@STCS-Net.com
Thank you so much, John, for posting this information. It has already been given to my church's Administrative Council, and we are looking at what action to take. We are awakening people.
Joe McManus OSMA
"But you, dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit." Jude 1:20
From: Janz I. Mynderup <email@example.com>
Once you have found someone who does not know Jesus Christ, you have found a mission field.
There will be an out cry, maybe, lots of words and comments....and nothing will happen.... John B cried out as well... in a similar wasteland wilderness... few heeded the words and business went on as usual.... But he was privileged to baptize our Savior..... But the "worldly" organization of the era eventually succeeded... Isn't it wonderful our reward is elsewhere and His grace is sufficient..... There is and will be a day of "audit".... rest assured...
Janz I. Mynderup
From: Curtis Williams firstname.lastname@example.org
This spells real trouble for the Methodist Chuch. Here we have a Board of the church completely out of control. Not only are they not; I restate not fulfilling their primary mission, they are deriving their income from stock market and interest investments. In my view we should abandon this Board and start over.
From: Don Roulsten email@example.com
Unbelievable!!!!!! Wonder how they will explain this.
Don Roulsten Pastor from CA
From: Stevens, Ron RSTEVENS@Ballard.k12.ky.us
Please understand that individual Methodist members trust you to spend this money on missions. If you continue to do as you have done in the past, I will urge my local Church Board to discontinue this apportionment.
Sincerly, Ron Stevens, Bandana UMC, Bandana, KY
From: Brenda Byrne and Brad Wilson firstname.lastname@example.org
I am greatly saddened that these figures are as they are. When we see the tremendous needs in the world around us (the GBoGM does a great job of convincing us of the great needs) I am frankly shocked that the Board appears to be able to ignore those needs.
I know of missionaries in the field who are counting their pennies in order to get by, doing the work of the Gospel around the world all the while our GBoGM is sitting on a well invested treasure trove the foundation of which they have gleaned from years of begging the UMC for funds to help the needy around the world. The kind of stockpiling that the GBoGM is doing is absolutely evil in light of the needs. The spending that they do on Administration is criminal. It appears that they are a bunch of fat cats whose first and greatest purpose is to soak the UMC for more money and their second purpose is to stay in control, no matter what. When only a tithe of what they spend goes to support missionaries in the field, and THAT IS SUPPOSED TO BE THEIR MAIN FUNCTION, then there is something horribly wrong. General Conference needs to go in there and clean house. The first things that needs to be done is to fire every administrator on the GBoGM. No audit will get the job done, no dialogue will clear up the misunderstanding, and no in house work by the GBoGM could ever be acceptable. The work of the whole board should then be immediately put into the hands of the Mission Society for United Methodists. The MS4UMs has proven itself to be reliable and accountable to the church. The GBoGM has proven itself to be inexcusably wasteful in its spending practices and "scrooge like" in its funding of missionaries.
This may seem a bit drastic, but how many more years are we gong to let the administrators of the GBoGM continue the waste, lies, and attempted cover-up of the truth? The ratio of administrative costs should be at maximum 10% of what is spent in the field not the current 10% spent in the field to the 90% spent on administration and funds put aside for some undetermined rainy day. This is corruption of the most insidious kind and it must be put at an end at the earliest possible moment.
I am one who continues to successfully urge my church to pay its apportionments in full. But if the General Conference doesn't do something about this incredible corruption at the GBoGM, I doubt that I will be able to convince my church (or any church) to continue to support the GBoGM into the future.
I remain hopeful and prayerfully supportive of the connectional system. I pray that it will bring about change, so that I may hold up my head once again and joyfully say that I am a United Methodist.
Yours in Christ's service,
Rev. Bradford B. Wilson, elder in full connection, Pastor at Fenton UMC, Fenton, IL in the Northern Illinois Conference of the UMC
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