How Your Church Feels About Money

It's not enough to manage church finances according to "sound business principles," because the definition of "sound business principles" varies widely, shaped by the culture, mindset, and financial setting of each particular community. —Gary Fenton

Late one evening, a young pastor called me, a frantic tone in his voice. He quickly got to the point: he feared he was about to be fired.

He outlined his story. Nine months earlier, when he accepted the church's invitation to become pastor, the church's needs and his gifts had seemed a good match.

Although the church had a budget, the former pastors and treasurer had never followed it. Upon the death of the tenured treasurer and the resignation of the pastor at about that same time, the church thought it a good time to bring order to their financial chaos.

According to the pulpit committee, the church needed a pastor with administrative gifts; according to this young pastor's own understanding ...

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