Contents

Who is this for?

This is a book mostly about money in the church:  getting it, using it, and accounting for it.  I hope that church treasurers everywhere will find the effort helpful, and that some will feel emboldened to change the way they manage their responsibilities.

However, it is also about the way we join ourselves into a church, how we align with intention to be religious together.  Money, with all the meanings we attach to it and with all the talking we do about it, is part of the bonding glue of our togetherness.  Our treasurers function within the larger context of our beliefs and attitudes about money and membership; and, it is this attitudinal context that is at the core of what I address.  There is some discussion about technique also, which those who do the day-in and day-out financial record-keeping will understand most readily.  Thus, it will be helpful for all who are responsible for guiding our churches:  those who serve on the finance committee, those who serve as trustees or deacons (or who may someday), and those who are pastors, ministers, or staff.  While the book is based in financial thinking, it is for the entire leadership – whether financial stewards, spiritual stewards, administrative stewards, or buildings and grounds stewards.

As you read through the book it will become clear that I am a Unitarian Universalist, and I have written from that perspective.  Earlier editions have been used and praised also by leaders in other denominations.  As a consequence, I have made attempts to broaden the language I employ.  Where my efforts are insufficient, I ask that you make further adjustments as you need them, in the belief that an open-hearted reading of the material presented here might be helpful in other faith communities.

I want to thank many who commented and cheered me along the way as I wrote and rewrote.  Many with whom I have corresponded on the internet through “discussion lists” such as UU-money have forced me to defend or change my thinking during the last several years.  Some of the material is simply an airing or expansion of their good thinking and I am thankful for their virtual assistance.  At the other extreme my wife, Gretchen Meyer, deals with the flesh and blood of my presence:  She puts up with my crabby insistence that I like the way I write while gently encouraging a more holistic and systemic view of church dynamics, greater clarity, and better use of commas.

K. Peter Henrickson                                                                                                         September, 2006

Copyright, 2006:  Permission to reproduce and modify the forms, reports, and tables is hereby granted.  The text in part or in its entirety may not be reproduced, nor used in any form, without the written permission of the copyright owner.

Table of Contents

ARTICULATE YOUR PRINCIPLES

LOOK AHEAD, NOT BACK

WE’RE IN THIS TOGETHER

CREATING A FINANCIAL VISION                                                                                          The Budget as Hindrance                                                                                                            The Vision Budget                                                                                                                        Embracing the Vision                                                                                                                   The Stewardship Drive                                                                                                         Privacy                                                                                                                               Percentage Commitments                                                                                                     Monthly Contribution Commitments                                                                                      Collecting the Monthly Commitment

THREE STORIES

COMPENSATION MANAGEMENT                                                                                    Employer Philosophy                                                                                                         Distinguishing Employment Types                                                                                    Relating Compensation to Employment Type                                                                  Holidays                                                                                                                                    Annual Leave and Sick Leave                                                                                               Benefits and Retirement                                                                                                       Compensation

FUNDS                                                                                                                                 Attractive Considerations of a Single Fund                                                                                  The Taxable Income Corporation                                                                                       Endowment Funds

THE CHART OF ACCOUNTS

RIGHT BRAIN ACCOUNTING

BORROWING TO BUILD

INTERNAL CONTROLS AND FINANCIAL OVERSIGHT

CASH MANAGEMENT

LOOKING AT NUMBERS

FINIS

Appendix 1 – Financial Policies                                                                                                   Appendix 2 – Employment Philosophy                                                                                       Appendix 3 – Requesting Committee Plans                                                                               Appendix 4 – Vision Budget                                                                                               Appendix 5 – Membership Standards Bylaw                                                                     Appendix 6 – Budget Drive Calendar                                                                                Appendix 7 – Giving Guide and Pledge Form                                                                   Appendix 8 – Canvasser Guidebook                                                                                 Appendix 9 – Endowment Fund Policies                                                                             Appendix 10 – Personnel Policies                                                                                         Appendix 11 – Sample Pay Protocol and Historical Records                                               Appendix 13 – Chart of Accounts                                                                                      Appendix 14 – Accounting                                                                                                          Appendix 15 – Accounting Understandings                                                                              Appendix 16 – Mortgages and Loans                                                                                          Appendix 17 – Auditing                                                                                                         Appendix 18 – Software                                                                                                               Appendix 19 – Financial Reports                                                                                                     Appendix 20 – Endowment Fund Report                                                                         Appendix 21 – Budget Drive Assessment                                                                        Appendix 22 – Bibliography

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s