By Leslie Scanlon, The Presbyterian Outlook.
The unaudited year-end financial report for the Presbyterian Church (USA) shows that revenue came in just under expected levels – but expenses fell about $7.9 million less than budgeted levels, in part because of staff vacancies.
That left the denomination with a change in net assets of $3.36 million and the PCUSA had to pull less from its unrestricted reserve funds to balance the budget than it originally had planned to spend.
Tony De La Rosa, executive director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency board, told the board’s finance and audit committees that ministry directors had held off on hiring for some vacancies in anticipation of staff cuts which may come in April. He described that as “careful planning and accommodation of where we’re going in the future.”
At its meeting in Louisville April 27-30, the board is expected to approve mission budgets for 2017 and 2018 that could include significant program and staff cuts. Earlier this year, 26 employees from the Presbyterian Mission Agency took voluntary separation packages offered to workers who were 60 years or older and had at least five years of continuous service with the denomination.
The unaudited budget for Dec. 31, 2015 included these details:
Expenses and receipts. Receipts at the end of the year totaled $72.1 million, about $1.2 million less than budgeted. Expenses totaled $68.7 million, or about $7.9 million less than budgeted. Those 2015 expenses included $881,922 more than had been expected in legal fees, and $82,296 for changing One Great Hour of Sharing marketing materials after some criticized the original marketing campaign as promoting racial stereotypes.
Congregational giving. Congregational giving for 2015 came in nearly $700,000 (or 7.4 percent) over budget – with $5.7 million being unrestricted giving and $4.1 million in restricted donations.
Special offerings. Receipts from the denomination’s four Special Offerings fell 7.2 percent under budget for 2015 (or $883,527). Giving was below budget for all four of the offerings, with Christmas Joy being 11 percent under budget and Pentecost being 20.8 percent under budget.