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Weekly Review

Giving Habits of the Uber-Wealthy, On Today’s MinistryWatch Podcast, MinistryWatch Database Changes, and More

Warren Cole Smith

Uber-Wealthy Underperform. The wealthiest 1 percent of the world’s population give away a lot of money, but – given their outsized wealth – they should be giving much more.  That’s one of the conclusions of a new report by the Washington, D.C.-based Milken Institute’s Center for Strategic Philanthropy.   The number of people with a net worth of at least $30-million total 265,490.   About a third of them live in the United States.  According to Stepping Off the Sidelines: The Unrealized Potential of Strategic Ultra-High-Net-Worth Philanthropy, a new report from the Milken Institute, “The personal wealth of the world’s richest is accumulating faster than philanthropic capital is being deployed, and faster than global issues are being solved.”  The wealthiest donors also are less likely to make contributions that address far-flung problems, such as global diseases, poverty, or homelessness. They tend to give to recipients where their donations will be readily and publicly recognized, such as their alma maters, their children’s schools, hospitals and museums.  Another interesting finding:  Of those with a net worth of more than $5-million, 78 percent do not track the effectiveness of the gifts they make to non-profits.

Americans Mostly Trust Non-Profits. Independent Sector (IS) released new findings on trust in civil society from a research study conducted in partnership with Edelman Intelligence.  The 32-page report, “Trust In Civil Society: Understanding the factors driving trust in nonprofits and philanthropy,” found that 81 percent are confident in nonprofits to help strengthen society.  People in rural communities and those from poor communities have lower degrees of trust in nonprofits.  Almost half of respondents agreed the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors are headed in the right direction compared with just 18 percent who said it on the wrong track; 35 percent answered “Don’t know.”

On Today’s Podcast.  Each week, Natasha Smith (no relation!) and I bring you news about Christian ministries, as well as the latest in charity and philanthropy, all designed to help us become better stewards of the resources God has entrusted to us.  On today’s program, the campus ministry Christian Union is learning new ways to minister in the age of Covid 19.  A new survey says that while many Christians WANT to return to church, they still have plenty of concerns about safety.  And we continue our series on Generous Living with a profile of Greg and Ronda Brenneman, who have made philanthropy a family affair.  We begin today with accusations of sexual abuse and exploitation of teenagers by a popular Christian camp.  You can hear the podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and other podcast apps, or you can simply click here.

ECFA Changes.  The following organizations have had membership status changes in the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.  ADDITIONS: None.  REMOVALS: Brave Church (Englewood, Colo.)

MinistryWatch Rating Changes. The following ministries have their profiles updated with the most recent year’s financial data.  The Financial Efficiency rating of each ministry is in parenthesis.  If this rating represents a change from the previous year, that change is noted:  Cookson Hills Christian School (3 Stars, Transparency Grade:  A), Cornerstone Assistance Network (3 Stars, Transparency Grade:  A), East-West Ministries International (3 Stars, Transparency Grade:  A), Songtime (5 Stars, Transparency Grade:  D), United Methodist Agency for the Retarded (2 Stars, Transparency Grade:  D), Vineyard Music Group (3 Stars, Transparency Grade:  D), Western Indian Ministries (4 Stars, Transparency Grade:  D), Wingfield Ministries (1 Star, Transparency Grade:  A), Your Story Hour (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: D)

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Warren Cole Smith
Warren Cole Smith

Warren previously served as Vice President of WORLD News Group, publisher of WORLD Magazine and has more than 30 years of experience as a writer, editor, marketing professional, and entrepreneur. Before launching a career in Christian journalism 20 years ago, Smith spent more than seven years as the Marketing Director at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

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