GCI: GCI Statement of Financial Stewardship
Grace Communion International, together with its affiliated entities, takes seriously the matter of financial stewardship and strives to abide by the highest standards of fiscal integrity. Toward that end, the church maintains the following policies:
Solicitation of funds — The church teaches that Christians have a spiritual duty to financially support their church and encourages each member to give as he or she is able and has been blessed by God. Thus, most but not all of our revenue is raised from our church members and is solicited, if at all, from verbal or written appeals in accordance with our doctrines.
The practice of tithing, while not mandated, is encouraged as a good standard of Christian financial stewardship. In its representations of need, the church strives at all times to state its financial status truthfully and factually, and does not accept a restriction upon any donation that it does not intend, in fact, to honor.
Use of exempt funds — Donated monies received are used only in accordance with the legally exempt purposes of the church and related entities as those are allowed in the law and stated in the various governing documents.
Accounting practices and procedures — The church maintains its accounts on an in-house computer system using third-party produced software in a manner conforming with generally accepted accounting principles.
Its accounting system operates under internal controls that are designed to safeguard the church’s assets and produce accurate and reliable accounting information. Examples of internal controls used include: a system for the authorization and approval of transactions, the separation of record keeping and reporting duties from those concerned with operations or asset custody, and the physical control of assets. Daily and monthly reports are generated to ensure the integrity of the financial operating system.
Audited financial statements — Each year the church produces a financial statement that is audited by an independent auditor (as of this date, Capin Crouse). Such yearly audit issues only after the church’s president and chief financial officer issue a formal, written representation to the auditors that the organization has in good faith provided everything for which the auditors have asked, and that, to the best of their knowledge, no irregular transactions have occurred, and no violations or possible violations of laws or regulations have occurred that should have been disclosed.
Board-level authorization and oversight — Members of the board of directors of Grace Communion International are instructed in and understand their duties under the law to use proper legal care in the exercise of their duties. Accordingly, all yearly budgets of the church are approved by the board, all major financial transactions are approved by the board before being executed, regular financial reports are made to the board by the church’s chief financial officer, and each yearly audited financial statement is presented to the board for its review.
Professional consultation — The church’s board and its officers retain both inside and outside independent legal and financial counsel and, in addition to close and continual consultation in the regular course of business, seek their opinion on special matters as prudence dictates. These opinions are noted in the minutes of the board meetings when appropriate.
Prohibition against inurement and conflicts — The title to all property and assets of the church is held in the name of the entity, is irrevocably dedicated to its exempt purposes and will not inure to the benefit of any private party. In addition, any financial transaction involving any board member that may conceivably involve a financial conflict of interest is subjected beforehand to the scrutiny and advice of auditors, of legal counsel and to the various state or federal laws regarding such matters.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and state contribution regulations — The codes and rules of the Internal Revenue Service and of the State of California regarding the solicitation, acknowledgement or receipt of, accounting for and use of tax exempt funds are complied with carefully. For this reason, all charitable donations to the church are tax deductible. All tax or financial informational returns filed with any state or federal agency are reviewed and countersigned by an independent auditor before being issued.
Employee salaries — Understanding the twin evils of both under and overcompensation, the church strives to provide its employees, including its paid ministry, fair and reasonable salaries as objectively measured, taking into consideration: the nature of the job, the person’s individual qualifications and merit, the training, education or experience required and possessed, the realities of the outside marketplace, the cost of living at the site of the job, the nonprofit nature of the organization, the financial ability of the employer and other relevant factors.