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Weekly Review

ECFA Membership Changes, MinistryWatch Database Changes, Boy Scouts Settlement, How To Read A Form 990

How To Find And Read A Form 990.  Here at MinistryWatch, we recommend that you NOT give to a Christian ministry until you review their Form 990. The Form 990 is a document all Christian ministries (except churches) must file and make publicly available every year.  However, many donors do not know where to find a Form 990, or how to read it. That’s why we’re offering a FREE webinar: “How To Find And Read A Form 990.”  Please join me and MinistryWatch’s board chairman Tim Burns (who is also a CPA) for this one-hour event, which includes a half-hour of instruction and a half-hour of Q&A with participants.  As I said, it’s free, but you need to register.  We are limiting registration to 100, and we’re nearly there. You can sign up by clicking here.

On the Podcast:  Boy Scouts Settlement.  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, a controversial pastor has been banned from Twitter, and the Boy Scouts have reached a massive $1.8-billion agreement with sexual abuse victims, but will it hold up, and what impact will it have on churches?  We begin today with news that the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America installed its first openly transgender bishop in a service held in San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral last Saturday.  And the United Methodist Church is suing one of its own congregations.  You can hear the podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and other podcast apps, or you can simply click here.

MinistryWatch EXTRA Episode.  This week’s EXTRA episode on the podcast features Brittany Smith and Natasha Smith.  They have a new book out called Unplanned Grace, which is a celebration of life, and of the Pregnancy Resource Center movement.  Listen here.

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.

ECFA Changes.  The following organizations have had membership status changes in the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.  ADDITIONS: Church of the Pioneers Foundation (Menlo Park, Calif.), Alternatives Pregnancy Center (Sacramento, Calif.), Assist Church Expansion (Pahrump, Nev.), Crosspoint City Church (Cartersville, Ga.), West Sound Youth for Christ (Bremerton, Wash.), Yorba Linda Friends Church (Yorba Linda, Calif.)    REMOVALS:  Shepherd Community (Indianapolis, Ind.), Freedom Church (Moncks Corner, S.C.), New Hope Church (San Diego, Calif.), Beautiful Feet Ministries of Tanzania (Conway, S.C.).

MinistryWatch Database Changes.  MinistryWatch now has more than 1,000 ministries in its database. These ministries represent more than $35-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:  Help the Persecuted (N/A Stars, Transparency Grade: C), 4KIDS of South Florida (Down 2 to 1 Star, Transparency Grade: C), AGAPE Network (Up 4 to 5 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), All God’s Children International (Down 5 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Arizona Baptist Children’s Services (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Asheville Christian Academy (Up 1 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Awana (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Buckner Children and Family Services (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Care Net (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Choice Books of Northern Virginia (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Christian Appalachian Project (Down 5 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Connie Maxwell Children’s Ministries (Down 2 to 1 Star, Transparency Grade: A), David C. Cook (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Delaware County Christian School Society (Up 1 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Desert Christian Academy (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Destiny Rescue USA (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), East Gates International (Up 1 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Forge (fka Kingdom Building Ministries, Inc.) (Up 4 to 5 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Four Corners Home for Children (Up 1 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Fresno Christian Schools (Up 4 to 5 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Good Samaritan Health Center of Gwinnett (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), HopeKids (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Living Stream Ministry (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), Man in the Mirror (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Medical Ambassadors International (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Minnesota Teen Challenge, dba MN Adult & Teen Challenge (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Orphan Helpers, Inc.  (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Partners Worldwide (Down 2 to 1 Star, Transparency Grade: A), pureHope / fka Natl’ Coalition for the Protection of Children & Families (Up 2 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Samaritan’s Feet International (Up 4 to 5 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), Shepherd Community Inc.  (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Show Hope (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Sunrise Children’s Services (Down 3 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: C), The Mailbox Club (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Town and Country Manor (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Vineyard USA (Down 4 to 3 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), Women’s Resource Medical Centers of Southern Nevada (Up 1 to 2 Stars, Transparency Grade: A), YUGO Ministries (Up 3 to 4 Stars, Transparency Grade: A). The following ministries have been added to the MinistryWatch database with the most recent year’s financial data: Germantown Friends School (N/A Stars, Transparency Grade: F), Mighty Oaks Foundation (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), St. Mark’s School of Texas (1 Stars, Transparency Grade: D), The Bishop’s School (N/A Stars, Transparency Grade: F), Westminster Schools Inc (2 Stars, Transparency Grade: D).

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.

Audio Version of Faith-Based Fraud Now Available. 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.

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 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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