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MC Canada donations on track, but looming economic crisis cause for concern


October 10, 2008
- Dan Dyck

Winnipeg, Man. — Donation income for Mennonite Church Canada is on track with projections for the fiscal year ending Jan. 31, 2009, and comparable to income at this time last year, said Randy Wiebe, Director of Finance. As of Sept. 30, $1.8 million dollars in donations had been received. Expenses, said Wiebe, are tracking below budget due to some delays in filling vacant staff positions.

With four months of the fiscal year left to go, 50% of a total donation budget of just over $3.7 million remains to come in. Although this percentage is not unusual compared to past years, the recent global financial crisis is causing concern for executive staff who met recently to discuss how the economy may affect MC Canada’s finances and ministry.

Robert J. Suderman, General Secretary, said, “It is difficult to predict the impact that today’s financial climate will have on giving to the church. We want to be good partners in ministry and uphold the commitments to others we have made in faith, but we also want to administer our responsibilities with the prudence required by our circumstances.”

On average, congregations are ahead of budget in their giving to Sept. 30, while individual donors as a group are behind – a break in the trend of the past several years. Wiebe speculated that this could be due to economies that are already slowing down in some regions. As of Sept. 30, income from other sources was slightly behind projections. Investment income is expected to be down by year end due to recent and forecasted volatility in financial markets, said Wiebe.