Is budgeting necessary for my church - even if we never spend more than we receive? Do employee benefits really have any impact on my church's ministry efforts? I have heard of "risk management" for businesses, but what does it mean for my church?
Recently, AG General Treasurer Doug Clay has created a new resource for church leaders focused on assisting churches in administration essentials.
"For many pastors, sermon preparation, exploring Scripture, prayer and other spiritual functions of the church are areas that they have a pretty good grip on," Clay explains, "but church administration can cause some leaders to feel like first-year Greek students, where not only do they not have answers, they may not even be sure of what questions they should be asking."
Clay says the new site information is like a Church Administration 101 for pastors, but contains insights and advice that even an experienced minister may not know, such as how many years should the church keep certain legal papers, including tax returns, audit reports, insurance records, bank statements, giving records, etc.?
Along with offering leaders training videos and a series of in-depth articles covering the basics of church administration, Clay offers a free monthly newsletter, "Church Administration Essentials - Resourcing the Business of Ministry," where new topics can be addressed and old topics more fully explored on a regular basis.
Clay says that the series of six training videos, which run from 30 to 45 minutes each, are an ideal way to gain key insights into church administration, without spending the money to attend a conference or trying to decipher technical terminology. Featuring Clay and other experts in the field of church administration, the videos use a conversational tone to cover challenging local church issues such as media, human resources, the benefits of budgeting, the basics of employee benefits and tutorials on Internet technology and risk management.
The series of church administration articles provided are available in both English and Spanish under the Frequently Asked Questions heading. These downloadable documents cover business practices, donations, and personnel and payroll practices. The site also offers a free Financial Controls Assessment tool that evaluates a church's processes.
"One of the key benefits of this site is that it's open ended," Clay says. "If after reading an article or watching a video, a pastor or church leader has additional questions, we offer specific direction as to where to find a great deal of additional information, including email addresses and phone numbers on the video presentations, or leaders are free to contact me through the website."
To explore the new church administration helps materials or subscribe to the free "Church Administration Essentials" newsletter, click here.