NACBA Weekly Update
Nov. 1, 2013

Report: Church giving reaches Depression-era record lows
Religion News Service
Collection plates are growing even lighter as Protestant church member giving reached new lows in 2011, and tithing probably will not recover from the recession, according to a new report by Empty Tomb, a Christian research group. The percentage of a church member's income given to the church dropped to 2.3 percent in 2011, down from 2.4 percent in 2010 and 3.1 percent in 1968.More

What's your church wearing?
By Mark MacDonald
What people wear — or the style they regularly wear — starts to become recognizable. In fact, we tend to wear similar things regularly. A brand is essentially that consistency we've become known for. And those things that are consistently used/worn become the visual identity of your brand. What's your church been wearing? Textures, styles and "cut" work into the equation, but color is the most recognized component of a brand suite.More

TeleWeb: Ethical tone of an organization
NACBA
We hear of corporate scandals as well as embezzlement or other failures in ministry and often think, "That could never happen in our congregation." Why not? There are basic policies and procedures that can protect an organization, but one of the driving factors of success or failure even of those policies is the ethical tone at the top. This Nov. 14 webinar will discuss what that really looks like and how it impacts the direction of the ministry including the impact that it can have on the financial results of a congregation.More

Pastor resigns over mental illness liability
Church Leaders
Pastor Greg Atkinson told his beloved church family that he would need to resign as their campus pastor because he suffers from a mood disorder that makes him a liability on the church insurance policy. Atkinson stood in front of his congregation, hands shaking, and read a statement he'd written explaining the situation.More

Unprecedented challenges to church and clergy tax laws
Evangelical Christian Credit Union
What are the chances that the clergy housing allowance could be eliminated? Or that church exemptions to Internal Revenue Service annual reporting requirements (such as Form 990) could end? If the Freedom From Religion Foundation has its way in court, these longstanding tax code provisions would be deemed unconstitutional.More

Management lessons learned from HealthCare.gov launch
By Mike Wokasch
The embarrassing and problematic launch of HealthCare.gov is nothing short of incomprehensible in our well-established technology driven world of commerce. If you are managing a small or large project, here are a few axioms that don't appear to have been taken into consideration when HealthCare.gov was constructed and launched. These lessons apply not only to launching new websites, but also to understanding how to manage large and small projects regardless of their complexity and regardless of the industry in which you work.More

5 tips for keeping online banking safe
Managing Your Church
Online banking has proven to be an efficient, environment-friendly way to pay bills and manage bank accounts. For all of its benefits though, there are still safety precautions churches need to take to protect their money. Mark Jones, money management expert for Evangelical Christian Credit Union, offers several tips for keeping online banking safe and secure.More

Disaster preparation: Helpful tips for businesses and facility managers
By Joy Burgess
A recent survey sponsored by the American Red Cross and FedEx showed that approximately 70 percent of small businesses do not expect to experience a disaster, and half of those surveyed do not have an emergency response plan in place. Surviving any kind disaster requires preparation, but many businesses and facility managers fail to put an emergency plan in place. To ensure the survival of your business, here are several helpful disaster preparedness tips you can follow.More

Of gods and cubicles: Religion, the office and the law
The Wall Street Journal
An evangelical Christian opposes biometric hand-scanning at his mine where he works, citing a Bible passage about hand marks given by the antichrist; two Muslim truck drivers object to delivering alcohol. What do these people have in common? They filed recent religious-discrimination complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, part of a rising tide of such grievances over the last several years.More

Sermons stretch as biblical literacy wanes
Associated Baptist Press
Religious literacy has declined to the point where modern audiences would be baffled at films like Monty Python's 1979 The Life of Brian, a British Broadcasting Corp. official said recently. Some Christian leaders on this side of the Atlantic agree with this observation, adding that a drop in religious literacy is a natural result from the rise of the "nones" — that growing population of church-averse Americans. And it's more than an academic issue for the nation's churches as those trends are changing how newcomers learn the Bible and the way preachers preach.More

Using traditional and social media together
By Robin Carver
There are pros and cons to either medium, but when used together, social and traditional media can provide a great advantage to your church. Here are two examples in which using both media together can help facilitate activities businesses use and make them more productive.More

Confessions of a miser: 6 tips to a strong budget
By Bob Fortune
Budgetary decisions often times require courage because difficult financial choices affect everyone within an organization. The following are six cornerstone budgetary philosophies that have helped our organization bear fruit through the ups and downs of many business cycles.More

How does the Affordable Care Act affect churches?
Managing Your Church
The biggest provision of the Affordable Care Act that affects 2013 is going to be changing your cafeteria plan limit for medical expenses to $2,500. But the really big problem is planning in 2014 for 2015, because all portions of it go into full effect for employers on Jan. 1, 2015.More

How to use social media in year-end drives
The Chronicle of Philanthropy
AudioBrief Natalie Stamer, director of digital communications strategy at the St. Baldrick's Foundation, explains how her charity uses social media to create fundraising messages everyone wants to share. Stamer, whose charity raises money for research on childhood cancers, shows how to track results and integrate social media with e-mail and direct-mail campaigns.More

Lessons on engaging young adults effectively
Lewis Center for Church Leadership
How can a congregation effectively engage younger adults? The Faith Communities Today study provides some clues. As part of the largest ongoing religious research project in the U.S., the study focused on the active involvement of young adults in participating faith communities and involved a multiyear examination of 10 congregations. These case studies and other qualitative data revealed some key lessons in how to attract and engage younger adult populations. More

Your team's got talent, so how can you develop it?
Church Leaders
One often overlooked role of the church is to develop the talent of its team members, both paid and volunteer. If people are investing their time and energy into the ministries of our church, but aren't leaving each week more equipped to do what they care about and to live out the dreams God has placed in their hearts, we are doing a disservice to them and the Kingdom. Of course, "developing talent" is much easier said than done.More