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Weekly Review

Michael Reneau of WORLD on the Podcast, Mission Aviation Fellowship in the Spotlight, and Audiobook of “Faith-Based Fraud” now available

Warren Cole Smith

On Today’s MinistryWatch Podcast.  Each week, MinistryWatch brings you news about Christian ministries, as well as the latest in charity and philanthropy, news that we examine from a Christian worldview perspective.  Our goal is to help us become better stewards of the resources God has entrusted to us.  On today’s program, Rick Warren asks Saddleback Church to start looking for his replacement.  Donor Advised Funds race new regulations.  And the Southern Baptists have some important – and difficult – issues ahead of them at their upcoming annual convention in Nashville.  We’ll have a preview.  We begin with the story of a small Christian college in Pennsylvania that shut down its social work program rather than compromise their Christian beliefs.  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:  NONE.

MinistryWatch Database Changes.  MinistryWatch now has more than 900 ministries in its database. These ministries represent more than $34-billion in total revenue, most of that donor revenue from evangelicals. 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: Bright Hope International (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Care Net (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Catholic Medical Mission Board / CMMB (5 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Catholic Relief Services (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Christian Aid Ministries (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Broadcasting Network / CBN / 700 Club / Pat Robertson (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Relief Fund (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Relief Services Charities (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Convoy of Hope (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Cru / Campus Crusade for Christ (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Reliant Mission (fka Great Commission Ministries, Inc.) (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Amazing Facts (N/A Stars, Transparency Grade: From D to C), Cadence International (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Chinese Christian Mission (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Children’s Home of Ohio (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Motorcyclists Association (Down 5 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Fellowship of Christian Athletes / FCA (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Fuller Theological Seminary (Down 2 to 1 Star, Transparency Grade: C), Haven Ministries (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: From C to A), Holston United Methodist Home for Children (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Lee University (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Living Proof Ministries (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Open Air Campaigners US Incorporated (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Oral Roberts University (Up 4 to 5 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Samford University (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Watoto Child Care Ministries (Down 5 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A). The following ministries have been added to the MinistryWatch database with the most recent year’s financial data: Asheville Christian Academy (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Association of Christian Schools International (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Colorado Springs Christian Schools (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Delaware County Christian School Society (1 Star, Transparency Grade: A), Desert Christian Academy (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Evangelical Christian School of Memphis (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Fellowship Christian School – Roswell, GA (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), French Camp Academy (1 Star, Transparency Grade: A), Fresno Christian Schools (5 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Front Range Christian School (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Sunrise Christian Services (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Western Seminary (4 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Westminster Seminary California (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Youth for Christ International (5 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), YWAM San Diego / Baja (3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), YWAM Ships Kona (5 Stars, Transparency Grade: A)

Access to MinistryWatch content is free.  However, we hope you will support our work with your prayers and financial gifts.  To make a donation, click here.

Podcast Extra:  Michael Reneau of WORLD Magazine.  Regular listeners to the program know that our midweek “MinistryWatch Extra” episodes are a chance for us to “go deep” with some of our editorial partners, or to talk with thought leaders about important topics.  Today, I’m pleased to have back on the program Michael Reneau.  Michael is the Editor of WORLD Magazine.  He came to WORLD after a successful tenure as an award-winning editor at The Greeneville Sun, a daily newspaper serving East Tennessee.  We begin with Sophia Lee’s WORLD cover story on exvangelicals – former evangelicals who have left the faith.  You can hear our conversation by clicking here.

In The Ministry Spotlight.  Each week, MinistryWatch selects a ministry from our database to spotlight.  We do this so you can see some of the powerful information we have in our database, information we hope will inform your giving decisions.  This week we focus the spotlight on Mission Aviation Fellowship. MAF has been around since 1945, and it has a storied history of service all around the world.  However, we also need to report that in recent years the financial management of MAF hasn’t been up to the level of its peers in the missions world.  It gets MinistryWatch’s lowest possible financial efficiency rating – 1 star, out of 5 stars.  And, to make matters worse from our point of view, it claims to be a church and doesn’t release its form 990s to the public.  We consider that to be a serious problem.  We have not yet issued a Donor Alert regarding Mission Aviation Fellowship.  A Donor Alert is our way of saying that you should NOT donate to the ministry until they clean up their act, but we currently have MAF under consideration for a Donor Alert.  To take a look at the mission and financials of MAF, click here.

Salary Data Now In MinistryWatch Database. We now have salary information for 3,000 executives from about 500 of the 850 ministries in our database posted in our profiles.  So check out this new addition by clicking on the red button at the top of this page, or here.  That takes you to our database.  The search engine is right there, and you can type in the name of a ministry you’re interested in and our profile will pop right up – now, with compensation information for the top executives.

On-Line Training For Ministry Leaders.  Thanks to a partnership with Dunham + Co., MinistryWatch is now able to offer on-line training “short courses” in such topics as change management, fundraising, social media, and the use of cryptocurrencies such as BitCoin.   To read more about these courses, click here.

New Developments With Faith-Based Fraud.  Thanks to those of you who made my new book Faith-Based Fraud a best-seller in several Amazon categories this week.  It’s now available in paperback and e-book versions.  To get your copy, click here.  This week, the new audio version released.  You can get that from Audible by clicking here.  I also want to let you know that I was a guest on the podcast and YouTube program “William Ramsey Investigates.”  You can watch that interview here.

New MinistryWatch Video.  In closing, a reminder that we have created a new, short (3.5 minutes) video that explains what we do here at MinistryWatch, and why.  If you’re new to MinistryWatch, I hope you’ll check it out.  To find it, click here.

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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 Vice President of The Colson Center for Christian Worldview. He has more than 30 years of experience as a writer, editor, marketing professional, and entrepreneur. Before launching a career in Christian journalism 25 years ago, Smith spent more than seven years as the Marketing Director at PricewaterhouseCoopers.

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