Two prominent mega-ministries under a Senate probe for opulent spending indicated they would institute reforms even before the investigation is complete, according to a new report.
Charismatic preachers Joyce Meyer and Benny Hinn are the only two that have fully cooperated with an investigation that is currently scrutinizing four other popular ministries and they are now reportedly taking their own action to ensure proper financial standing as a nonprofit.
"Transparency has been and will continue to be a standard of this ministry," said Joyce Meyer, who was the first to turn over requested papers, in a statement Tuesday. "We hold a deep commitment to our ministry partners and friends, and this is why we have a tradition of going above and beyond what is required by law. We are committed to the truth and to our purpose." more >>
A group of Pentecostal ministers and churches have thrown their backing behind televangelist Kenneth Copeland and his refusal to cooperate with a Senate probe into his ministry's spending.
Assemblies of God International Fellowship released a statement in their latest newsletter saying the current investigation, led by Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), into the financial records of six prominent ministries "seems to be crossing a legal boundary."
"Politicians enact laws to separate Church and State which many think to be unconstitutional and then try to intrude into Church affairs while denying the Church discussion of State (political) affairs. This sounds like a one way street in favor of the State," the group said. more >>
Pentecostal preacher Kenneth Copeland is now looking to gain public support as he continues to question and protest a senator's investigation into the spending of six "prosperity gospel" ministries, including his. This week, his ministry launched a Web site to address concerns about the inquiry.
"The Grassley Investigation: Do Churches Still Have Constitutional Rights?" says an article on the homepage of www.BelieversStandUnited.com.
The site is in response to an inquiry led by Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), who last November sent letters to six prominent ministries asking that they provide financial records and answer questions regarding their organizational as well as personal finances. The senate probe was prompted by media reports and ministry watchdogs that alleged opulent spending and possible abuse of their nonprofit status. more >>
Most Americans believe non-profit organizations and charities are not financially efficient enough in their work, a new study shows.
In a survey conducted by Ellison Research on over 1,000 American adults, 62 percent said they believe the typical non-profit spends more than what is reasonable on overhead expenses such as fundraising and administration. The average American believes 36.3 cents of every dollar they give to a typical non-profit group goes toward overhead expenses.
The reasonable amount that should go to such expenses should be 22.4 cents for every dollar, the average American believes, according to the study released Wednesday. But 43 percent of all Americans say a figure below 20 cents on the dollar should be a reasonable proportion for overhead expenses and 74 percent say a figure below 30 cents on the dollar should be spent on overhead. more >>
With still little cooperation from ministries that have been asked to turn over their financial statements for investigation, Sen. Charles Grassley plans to send out another round of letters requesting that they comply.
In the next few weeks, letters will again be sent to Christian television ministries that have not responded or raised concerns about the probe, which is being conducted by the Senate Finance Committee led by Grassley.
Only two Joyce Meyer Ministries and Kenneth Copeland Ministries of the six ministries under investigation have turned over their documents last month and only Meyer has pledged full cooperation. more >>
In the wake of money fraud scandals and allegations of opulent spending among high-profile ministers, an evangelical accountability group announced plans to expand its role and raise financial integrity.
The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA) has provided oversight and accreditation to Christian nonprofits for nearly 30 years, monitoring the groups' fundraising and providing financial stewardship. It currently has more than 2,000 Christian nonprofit organization members and has been low key with no marketing until just recently.
The U.S. Senate Finance Committee investigation of six major media ministries drew in a string of media calls to ECFA's president, Kenneth Behr. more >>