Men make counterfeit money; in many more cases, money makes counterfeit men. -Sydney J. Harris link
The third and final post. Yay!
Follow the money, if you can.
OK, here it is in a nutshell. Mars Hill Global was a fund to which you could designate contributions. The purpose of this money was to benefit Mars Hill ministries in foreign countries.
From Warren Throckmorton
According to a presentation at a recent Mars Hill vision breakfast, giving to Mars Hill Global remains robust. For instance, in December 2013, just over $340k was given to Mars Hill Global.
Prior to May 2014, donors could designate gifts to the Mars Hill Global Fund which was distinct from the Mars Hill General Fund. However, sometime in May, the Global Fund disappeared. Now, donations for all purposes have to be given to the Mars Hill General Fund since the option to designate money to the Mars Hill Global Fund is no longer available. One wonders where the Global Fund went in the midst of the fiscal year.
As noted above, Mars Hill reported 2013 giving to the Global Fund but did not report disbursements from that fund.
Huh? The church will not report where the money went?
It appears that the money may not have gone into global efforts after all.
After the recent changes to Mars Hill’s giving webpage, it is clearer that funds given for global outreach now go to the General Fund. There is no Global Fund option. Those who want to give to Mars Hill’s work in Ethiopia or India must hope that some of their donations will go to those ends, but there are no guarantees.
Well, there was no guarantee because it is evident that some of the money was used to pay for a local building.
In a post on the Mars Hill Church website, Mars Hill Everett franchise lead pastor Ryan Williams thanked Mars Hill Global for financial help with the down payment and restoration costs for the old Washington National Guard Armory building now occupied by the Everett church.
There are a number of posts at Warren Throckmorton's website about this issue. Church money was used to pay for buying a NY Times bestseller position for Driscoll. The salaries for the three top pastors at Mars Hill are rumored to be nearing the million dollar range and the church steadfastly refuses to release the salaries of the pastors. Therefore, anyone with an ounce of common sense should ask "Show me the money trail." Some have and have received no response. One man was even removed from his position as a care group leader coach for asking this question.
Petitioning Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability: Mars Hill Church, tell us how much "Global Fund" money was spent on "international" outreach.
Mars Hill Church has solicited millions of dollars for its "Global Fund" which, now that questions have been asked, has disappeared. It seems that most of the money was not spent on global or international outreach and that the money simply went into the general fund. Donors and those with a close interest or tie to Mars Hill Church ought to know exactly how much of what they gave was spent on international outreach. This is a part of a greater call for financial transparency from the leaders at Mars Hill Church.
Why should you sign this petition?
If you have ever attended an Acts 29 church, Mars Hill money went to help that church plant. Have you ever bought a Mark Driscoll book? Have you listened to Driscoll's sermons on line and applied his suggestions? Have you thought that your church should adopt his "techniques" or become part of his network? Have you attended conferences at which he was a featured speaker? Then you have given money and time to his enterprise. You have a right to know where your money is going.
In fact, don't you think that a real church with an honest leadership would have a transparent budget? Why wouldn't they tell you how they use the money that is given to the church?
I think this is a way to hold Mark Driscoll, his pastors and the church "leaders" in check. Since they don't have a real elder board, maybe we could provide one for them at least in deed.
Warren Throckmorton's excellent review in The Daily Beast
Are you overwhelmed on all of the nonsense going on over at Mars Hill? Please read Megachurch Star Mark Driscoll's Publishing Downfall. My thoughts: Mars Hill is in deep trouble and it is time for Mark Driscoll to act like the man that he likes to think that he is.