NACBA Weekly Update
Nov. 8, 2013

New normal realities: Religious financing, compensation/benefits and fundraising — Part 2
Church Executive
At the NACBA annual conference, Church Executive hosted a live roundtable on a timely topic: "new normal" challenges and solutions in the areas of financing, compensation/benefits and capital campaigns. Several high-level executives representing each sector came together to share their observations. The highlights and takeaways of this insightful discussion are published as a two-part series. In Part 1, the panelists outline the pre- and postrecession climates in their areas of expertise. Here, in the final installment, they switch gears to "solution mode," drilling down on strategies church leaders can employ to overcome new obstacles.More

How to turn your pastor's vision into reality without wearing out your staff
By Deborah Wipf
You're in a staff meeting and your senior pastor mentions that he has an idea. Immediately, you start getting concerned (and then feel guilty for being concerned). You've been down this road before. He comes up with a great idea that you fully support; however, you know there's a ton of work required to make it happen. Oh, and this is in addition to your team's day-to-day responsibilities, plus he wants it implemented ASAP. Don't you wish you could make that feeling of dread go away?More

TeleWeb: Ethical tone of an organization
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

Questions of compensation
Faith & Leadership
Questions about the compensation and benefits of Christian congregational and institutional leaders have swirled in the news over the past few weeks. Even mention the topic, and one hears a variety of opinions about wealth and poverty, abundance and scarcity, transparency and privacy, ambition and consumption in the life of a Christian. This array of expectations and assumptions complicates the budget-creating, salary-setting work of the Christian institutional leader, but it also underscores the need to have frank but generative conversations about compensation within Christian institutions.More

Church, state and taxes spark debate
Associated Baptist Press
Congress established the 501(c)3 tax-exempt status applicable to churches, religious organizations and ministers "in recognition of their unique status in American society," the IRS claims in its Tax Guide for Churches and Religious Organizations. Some say a ban that prevents tax-exempt charities from publicly endorsing or opposing candidates for political office violates churches' constitutional rights. Others say maintaining a "wall of separation" between church and state is best for both.More

Do sermons about tithing produce cheerful giving?
The Christian Post
"God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Cor. 9:7) So why then does the topic of giving often leave many hearers with such little joy? You would think it would be just the opposite after everything Christ has done to redeem us. Does the problem lie primarily in the hearts of the hearers, or are there things pastors say today on this topic that block the joy of the Lord from reaching most of the people? Maybe it's a little of both.More

Philanthropy and the church
Faith & Leadership
Congregations have long been accustomed to seeking financial support from their own members. But a growing number today are looking beyond their walls for additional support to fund much-needed community services, said the Rev. Joe Mann. The former Duke Endowment officer has some advice on how churches can connect with the world of philanthropy.More

Orlando businessman sues pastor, wants $117K in donations back
Orlando Sentinel
Craig Mateer has done very well as an entrepreneur. The son of a prominent Orlando attorney, Mateer turned an airport parking and airline baggage business into a $100 million-a-year enterprise. In return, Mateer donates generously to charities, churches and nonprofits in his hometown. Now he wants some of that money back. In a rare move, Mateer has filed a lawsuit against World Hope Inc. and Pastor David Janney seeking the return of more than $117,000 he donated to the organization during several years.More

A consensus model for conducting an annual meeting
Lewis Center for Church Leadership
Each year, my congregation holds an annual meeting to review the past year, give updates on issues and share projections for the coming year. We traditionally have used formal parliamentary procedure and Robert's Rules of Order for this meeting. While this approach has some advantages, sometimes it has led to unnecessary confrontation and power struggles. After researching consensus decision-making models, consulting colleagues and praying, I decided to try a new, more collaborative approach. More

'Church Rescue' propels unlikely reality TV stars: Church consultants
Religion News Service
They've rescued bars and restaurants and shabby houses, but this month reality television stars are set to rescue something new. "Church Rescue" will debut Nov. 11 on the National Geographic Channel, featuring the most unlikely of reality TV stars: church consultants.More

What should we do with church bullies?
Church Leaders
Anyone interposing himself between the Lord Jesus and His church is asking for it. Sometimes that would-be dictator is the pastor, a man sent by God to be the shepherd of the sheep, but who has forgotten that he does not own the flock and cannot do with it as he pleases. More likely, however, the man — it's almost always a man — who takes it upon himself to run the church is a layperson with what he thinks are dynamic leadership skills.More

101 bad business buzzwords — and why you should avoid them
By Joe Latta
Today's business materials are littered with important-sounding words that have no real value. Seamless, top-notch, world-class, laser-focused, and best of breed. We've all been guilty of using terms like these in place of meaningful descriptors. Not good.More

What's your church wearing?
By Mark MacDonald
What people wear — or the style they regularly wear — starts to become recognizable. 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?More

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. 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.More

8 tips for delivering difficult employee feedback
By Liz Murphy
Being in a leadership position can be rewarding, but it does require a lot of time and dedication to your people. In fact, one of the biggest responsibilities of a leader is identifying and correcting performance issues. Because an employee's performance can be a sensitive matter, here are eight tips to help you deliver difficult feedback in a way that produces positive results.More

4 ways to manage irrational employees
A lot of things can derail sound decision-making, but there's one in particular that's tough for almost everyone to avoid: bias. It's natural to approach decisions with preconceived notions that will compel you to ignore evidence and lean to one side. That's why it's your job as the leader to identify your team's biases. For one thing, it will help you make clearer, unadulterated decisions. But rooting out irrational prejudices also will help you improve the way your team works together and reasons through problems.More