July Financial Update

Hello Church Family, 

With our July books now closed, we’re able to give you a more detailed financial report including taking a look at our expenses through the second quarter (January-June). Many of you have noticed and commented to me regarding the downward trend of giving over the past couple months. This trend not only continued but accelerated in July. Let me give you the numbers and then I’ll make some comments. 

JULY GIVING REPORT / MINISTRY FUND 

July Budget: $145,000

July Actual Giving: $111,459.17

Difference: -$33,540.83 (-30.09%)

2021 JANUARY-JULY BUDGET REPORT / MINISTRY FUND   

2021 January-July Budget: $1,040,000

2021 January-July Actual Giving: $981,857.76

Difference: -$58,142.24 (-5.92%)

AUGUST GIVING REPORT / MINISTRY FUND 

August Budget: $155,000 (we have a higher forecasted budget because of five Sundays in August)

SECOND QUARTER EXPENSE REPORT / MINISTRY FUND 

Through the second quarter, our expenses were 2.64% under what we had budgeted. We have been spending less than what we have projected and I’m very proud of our staff, who continue to keep a close eye on what we spend. We’re starting to cut back on maintenance and operation costs as much as we can, but we were already operating on a shoestring budget so we’re limited in our options.  

COMMENTARY. If our giving trend was a slow trickle in the spring, the dam broke in July. We believe that our giving struggles are multifaceted and your staff and elders are being proactive in making some needed course corrections. Obviously, if these trends continue, we’ll find ourselves in some choppy waters here in a few months, but we have planned and prepared ahead for seasons like this so we anticipate that we have several months to right the ship—something I believe we have every opportunity to do as we focus on leading people to pursue a Jesus-first life in Salem and around the world. With all of this said, we’re still paying all of our bills on time and we have not had to dip into our rainy day fund, but we are getting very close to needing to do so.     

STAFF UPDATE. We already miss Pastor Chris and his family very much. Please continue to pray for them as they transition to the new areas of ministry God has for them. Many of you have been asking what our next hiring plans might be. We believe that we need to focus on our Children’s and Family Ministries. The Mstar Kids team is doing a fabulous job with part-time staffing and we have had a vision for a long time to strengthen this important ministry with a full-time pastor/director. Many research groups have concluded that the overwhelming majority of people will make a decision to follow Jesus or not by age 12. It is mission critical to reach children with the good news of Jesus and also empower parents to be the primary faith trainers of their children. The plan is to reallocate any available funds toward filling this important and currently missing position on our team. We will keep you updated on progress as we pray and search for the right person and keep an eye on our financial budget. Chris’ responsibilities have been divided up amongst the current leadership team and we have good plans moving forward to continue the important work that he did here. 

GIVING. If you would like to partner financially with Morning Star Community Church in disciple-making work and/or set up automatic giving, you can do so by clicking HERE.     

Thank you for your prayers and support as we lead people to pursue a Jesus-first life.

Jesus first! 

John Jaskilka
Executive Pastor