THIS past week we held our spring Board of Directors Meeting! All BOD meetings are important and this one was no exception! We considered our Ministry Budget Plan for 2018-2019 (Remember we operate on a fiscal year beginning April 1 – Easter this year). The Ministry Budget Plan is always a bit tricky as it is in most congregations. The needs for various ministry efforts in the district are always our best and most intelligent estimates. Ron Bleke and Diane Ottinger spend many hours weighing the various and broad resource requests from the departments of the Indiana District. After evaluating all requests the executive staff works to prioritize the requests and look at them in the light of anticipated gifts from the congregations! Finally, the proposed budget goes to the BOD.
We operate with a convention resolution for a “balanced budget”. This is more possible in the corporate world where incomes can be more reasonably estimated or defined and where they are not working with staff in called positions. By God’s grace the Indiana District always ends the year in the black – even when that has involved using some unrestricted funds to even things out. We are a frugal district with a big mission heart!
The truth is that our congregations are very generous in their mission giving, but in recent years many of the gifts are not assigned to our work together in the district, but to other good and God-pleasing causes. We see this happening in a number of places. This does limit the work we do in the church at large! A number of our districts are being forced to reduce district staffs and programs to continue.
We will all come to the point of needing to discern the best stewardship approach for our personal family needs, congregational mission, as well as the work we share as districts and synod. This is not an easy and sometimes not a comfortable discussion. As we move forward we pray about this, spend time in God’s Word together and look carefully at the mission field. That’s what our BOD did last week as they approved our Ministry Budget Plan for the coming year. We are blessed in the Indiana District and we see that we could be even more blessed if we walked and worked more closely together! Just saying. Anyway pray for our “walking” and “working” in the days and years ahead!
P.S. Are you remembering the deadline for nominations for district position! It is April 13!