Several months ago a major story concerning a well-know non-profit organization serving wounded vets dominated the news. Claims were made alleging that donations were used for high salaries and expensive parties rather than for helping the wounded.
We’ve had MoneyWise callers express disappointment that their church leaders are not transparent with how the finances are handled. From a biblical point of view, it is imperative for all churches and ministries to be transparent with how donated money is used.
A example is the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 8:19-22, “. . . he [a trusted brother] was chosen by the churches to accompany us as we carry the offering, which we administer in order to honor the Lord himself . . . We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this liberal gift. For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man. In addition, we are sending with them our brother who has often proved to us in many ways that he is zealous.”
People in Paul’s day were wondering how donations were being used, and guess what? That hasn’t changed!
Paul wanted to avoid criticism and questions about how this gift was used. He wanted to handle it in such a transparent way that it would please the Lord and also those who had given. That is why no one person handled the money; other trusted people administered the gift.
Churches and ministries should make their budgets, tax returns and audits (if they conduct one) available to their members and donors. When people realize finances are handled with integrity, they are encouraged and often become even more generous.