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1995 Stewardship Report of the United Methodist Church

Believing that the laity are unaware of over 99% of what is happening within the United Methodist Church (UMC), and that an informed, aware membership is vital to the renewal of our denomination, we are presenting the following information on the expenditure of church moneys. This data is by no means comprehensive, but provides a means of showing what the priorities are of our denomination. We believe that the adage "Follow the money" holds true in giving a reliable indicator of what one - be it individual or institution - deems important. This study offers an overall view of the UMC financial picture, a Prognosis for the Future, and Selected Financial Data and Organizational Support by some employees in the UM general boards and agencies. We believe that, at times, there is a questionable use of the tithes given so faithfully into the church by the people sitting in the pew.

When a person is asked to give to the UMC, it is necessary to look past the rhetoric of "giving to God's work," "returning to God what is His," etc. to the reality of how money is spent. Remember that the Bible tells us that we, both individually and church officials corporately, will be held accountable for the wise use of resources in doing His work (Malachi 3:8-12; Luke 16:2, etc.). In other words, "How efficiently is the money given in the name of the Lord actually translated by the institution of the church into its intended purpose at its ultimate destination?" Please review the history of expenditures in previous editions of The Christian Methodist Newsletter ** and consider how confusing UMC funding practices can be by examining this chart showing financial transfers from a previous year:

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For instance, the National and World Council of Churches (NCC & WCC) are funded not only through the International Denominational Cooperation Fund (ICF) but also the Women's Division, special offerings, and from the World Service apportionments through any of a number of the general boards and agencies: the General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM), the General Board of Church and Society (GBCS), the General Council on Ministries (GCOM), the General Board of Discipleship (GBOD), the General Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministry, and the Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns. In addition to multiple paths of financial support, the ways a given organization may be supported can vary from one year to the next. As a more specific example, in 1992 the GBGM funded the Sandinista "Centro Ecumenical Antonio Valdivieso" (CAV) in three separate ways: 1. directly ($6,000), 2. through the NCC ($7,000), and 3. through the Ecumenical Committee for Aid to Development (CEPAD) ($3,581). Funding within the GBGM to an organization can come from multiple sources; for instance, one group can receive separate grants from the Women's Division, the World Division, the National Division, and the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR).

While there is much good that the United Methodist Church does with its money, we continue to be troubled by the fiscal prioritization evidenced, and by the lack of openness, honesty, and accountability in its overall use. The following historical information gives but a few examples of problems in how money has been used in the past:

- Analysis of GBGM expenditures during the four years 1984-87 shows that $54,694,344 given to 2,314 non-United Methodist groups equaled ninety-six percent of the World Service Fund received by the GBGM. [1]

- The amount of United Methodist Church money that actually goes to benevolent and mission causes has declined to 13 per cent and exhibits a continued downward trend. [2]

- Money from the ICF, United Methodist Women (UMW), World Service, CROP, special offerings, and various general boards and agencies go to support the NCC and subsequently Church World Service (CWS). Please consider how some of that money was used:

- $500,000 was given by CWS to the government of Vietnam to set up "New Economic Zones", a southeast Asian place of exile to which political undesirables are sent - a veritable "Siberia". People with no farming experience are sent there as punishment to fend for themselves; ethnic Chinese have braved death at sea to escape going to these locations. In another situation, Le Thi Loi, a Christian pastor, was executed for his work among the peasants; his was only one of 60,000 such deaths. CWS consistently works for political advocacy on behalf of this government. [3]

- Thousands of dollars support the Office of Development Policy (ODP), a CWS political lobby in Washington, DC. Larry Minear, head of the ODP, wrote an article critical of aid to the Afghan resistance and supportive of the Soviet-backed regime when it was in Kabul. Among other numerous atrocities and attempted genocide against the people, butterfly mines were used to intentionally maim and injure children. Pictures of this are available at the offices of Concerned Methodists. During all of the years of the Soviet war in Afghanistan and its numerous documented atrocities there, no credible protest was ever voiced by the NCC, WCC, or our own UMC leadership. [I, 3 ]

- Other CWS political activism has involved support of the Marxist governments in Mozambique, Cuba, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Vietnam, the Southwest African People's Organization (SWAPO), the African National Congress (ANC), and pro-Sandinista elements in Nicaragua,. At Congressional hearings where the director of CWS testified as to the excellent conditions of Vietnamese "reeducation camps", Nguyen Van Coi, a survivor of those same camps testified: "I was given two small bowls of rice twice daily, plain rice with salt. The cell in which I was detained was 11 feet by 22 feet. There were around 81 prisoners in my cell. We had to lie on our sides because there was not enough room to lie on our backs during the night." [3]

- In excess of $754,000 was given to the ANC through the WCC. The ANC uses the method of "necklacing" to terrorize other Africans, which is the practice of taking any who displease the ANC, putting a tire around his or her neck and setting fire to gasoline poured over the victim.

- In excess of $1,348,000 was given to SWAPO by the WCC.

-$75,000 was given to the Christian Council on Mozambique, which is politically active on behalf of increased aid to that Marxist country.

- $200,000 of church money was spent for a study of homosexuality.

- Bishops who receive an average compensation package far exceeding $100,000 per year work to promote the adoption of homosexual practice within the United Methodist Church and in American society. In addition, they have failed to address the continuing spread of the "goddess" theologies stemming from the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference in the late 1970s, exemplified by the "Re-Imagining Conference" and continuing up to the present.

- Money was given to the Caribbean Conference of Churches, involved in political activism on behalf of Cuba and against the United States.

- $1,039,971 was spent for three GBGM meetings within one year's time.

- $500,000 was spent for a terminated GBGM staffer.

- $64,052 was spent for one year's travel expenses for just one GBGM staffer, over and above receiving his regular salary.

- $25,000 was spent by the GBGM for a study to counter the one authorized by the 1988 General Conference: the original study showed that it was economically feasible and desirable for the GBGM to move from its New York offices, an action which that board is fighting.

Prognosis for the Future

The future of UMC finances appears to be problematic. An "Annual Conference listening Project" conducted by the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) suggests UMC financial problems are likely to continue. As a way of securing input about the budget to be recommended in 1997-2000, GCFA conducted group interviews with leaders of fourteen conferences. In 1993 there was no consensus about the financial future, but in 1994 most conferences agreed income would either fall or be flat in the next quadrennium, and connectional ministries would need to be better focused, better interpreted, and more clearly relevant to local church needs.

Asked about funding levels general agencies can expect in 1997-2000, conference leaders said it would be "about the same" or "less". Attitudes toward the general church range from neutral to negative. When there is enthusiasm for general funds, there is equal concern about the "high level of administrative expense and failure to prioritize." [4]

Reasons for the negative attitudes toward perceived stewardship at the general church level may stem from staffers' extravagance, waste, lack of accountability, and - at times - obfuscation. For instance, a presenter at a district level lay education session desired to illustrate why it was "necessary to pay the full apportionment." He gave the illustration of a line of people whose collective job it was to pass a glass of water from one end to the other without spilling any. He stated that "if one person sips a little out of the glass before he passes it on, not as much will reach the end of the line. In the same way, when a church does not pay its full apportionment, then less is available for mission." This reflects spurious reasoning and is disingenuous. With the observation made by professors William H. Willimon and Robert L. Wilson of Duke University in their book Rekindling the Flame that only 13% of UM money is actually translated into true mission and benevolence, then the issue that should have been discussed by the presenter is why the glass of water was only 13% full? The salient question that should be addressed in the area of stewardship is "What happens to that other 87%?" This exemplifies why there is a growing distrust of financial accountability stemming from the general church level.

Selected Financial Data and Organizational Support

The amounts listed are for the years 1993 and 1994; general funding for 1994 reflects the most current figures available. Selected organizations will show some funding for 1995, but that will be the exception. For those organizations that have only one figure listed, funding indicated is for 1994. Others such as the Episcopal Fund, UM Communications, and the General Board of Church and Society show an amount that approximates the yearly budget for the 1992-1996 quadrennium. In some instances, funding for an organization was indicated by a single amount with a past year indicated; this is to show a pattern of support for a specific cause. For those organizations with three figures listed, the amounts are for 1992, 1993, and 1994, i.e., "$100/$100/$100" shows that the organization received $100 for each of the years 1992, 1993, and 1994. This also helps to establish a specific pattern of funding.

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Political Advocacy

The bishops, members of the GBCS, GBGM, NCC, WCC, and UM Communications are active in the political arena. We believe this to be a misuse of UMC resources in that the needs in spiritual areas are not being met. Someone once said, "If you do things you shouldn't be doing, you won't have time to do the things you should be doing." We believe this to be true. In addition to the neglect of spiritual areas that are so vital to the life of our church, there is an element of duplicity in the political advocacy that is conducted. When UM staffers from these respective agencies are lobbying our national leadership on behalf of a "cause," they give the appearance of speaking for the UMC's 8.6 million member when, in fact, they do not. In addition, staffers frequently adopt positions opposite to that of the majority of UM members, notably in the areas of abortion and homosexuality. Two surveys in the files of Concerned Methodists show that the UM membership opposes both of these practices, yet UM staffers and bishops lobby on the basis that the membership supports them.

Some actions such as political advocacy in a specific area involved multiple groups; for instance, activism on behalf of Cuba may have involved the GBCS, GBGM, NCC, and the bishops. A full description of the action will be included at one place in the paper and a note made in the paragraphs for those groups participating or otherwise having a responsibility in the action referring back to the section that contains the description applying to all of the groups. As in the example of Cuba, the descriptive paragraph may be in the GBCS section, but there will be a note in each of the sections for the NCC and the Episcopal Fund referring back to the original section. Finally, those sections having multiple paragraphs such as the GBCS, GBGM, NCC, and the Episcopal Fund will be distinguished from the others by a row of crosses (+) such as:

Action for a Better Community (ABC) $4300
Its self-described mission is a multiracial, multilingual community organization working for systemic change through direct action. Its members organize around "issues of social/economic justice" demanding accountability on the part of public officials and institutions.

Africa - Church Growth & Development $153,346* (1993 only) [A]

All Africa Conference of Churches $115,600* [A/FRN]

American Committee on Africa (ACA), $5,000* (1991 only) [A]

American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) $1,200/$2,000*
AFSC is a professed pacifist group having at times supported various radical causes to include the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

Angola $83,860/$131,646* [A/FRN]

Beijing Conference $5,500* (1994 only)
Click here to see the description in the section on the United Nations.

Caribbean Conference of Churches (CCC) $47,620/$52,500*
CCC has favored Cuba and opposed the United States to include the military action to oust Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega, who was involved in drug running. [T]

Center for Community Action (CCA) $11,200/ - /$4,300* [N/FRN]
CCA's self-described purpose is to "broaden the base of citizen participation in the social and political process in Robeson County (North Carolina)....The Center has kept in focus the underlying economic interests which are the root cause of the 'closed political and social system'".

Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) $7,000/$3,500<*br> The CCR's self-described mission is "endeavoring to bring down the system through the system." CCR has sued the U.S. government to prevent deployment of the MX missile, "hold it responsible for injuries suffered by Nicaraguans at the hand of the Contras," and frustrated grand jury investigations of terrorist activities. [T]

Central American Working Group (CAWG) $4,000/$4,000*
CAWG was formed to carry on the Central America program of the Coalition for a new Foreign and Military Policy (CNFMP) which disbanded in the late 1980s. These organizations have opposed U.S. policy and have actively favored Marxist-Leninist governments. CNFMP Executive Director David Reed stated in the April, 1984 newsletter Nicaragua Network News that by "demanding the dismantling of the massive military infrastructure the U.S. maintains around the globe," U.S. leftists could protect "the gains of progressive movements in the Third World." He cited the Sandinistas in Nicaragua and the Marxist-Leninist MPLA government in Angola as examples of the sorts of "progressive movements" he wished to defend. CAWG is a project of the National Council of Churches.

Centro Antonio Valdivieso (CAC) $10,590/$10,445*
CAV is the unofficial headquarters of the pro-Sandinista "People's Church" in Nicaragua and has taken action against Roman Catholics and other Christians who did not support them.

Children's Defense Fund (CDF) $5,000/$17,600* [N/FRN]

Church Women United (CWU) $40,977/$42,025*
Located at 475 Riverside Drive in New York, CWU addresses a wide range of political issues. A 1983 visit to Nicaragua prompted the following statement by Marjorie Tuite, CWU's Director of Ecumenical Citizen Action: "It (the Sandinista revolution) is the response of a faith-filled people, the energy of the collective, the conscience of the world. It is truly the journey of an Exodus people in a long march to the promised land to establish a society free from alienation and misery....In the revolutionary struggle of the poor, the presence of God in the midst of a people is clearly demonstrated. As Moses lived in the heart of Israel, so too 'Sandino lives in the struggle for peace.' Nicaragua offers to the world of nations the promise of newness." (Note: six years later, the people voted this government out of office) CWU opposed the Persian Gulf War. In the 1990 CWU magazine article "Cold War End: A Mixed Blessing," by Carol Barton, the CWU Director of the U.N. and International Affairs, blamed "Two-Thirds World" (Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Pacific, and the Caribbean) poverty and debt on "Western Capitalism." According to Barton, free competition in the marketplace means that transnational corporations "pit workers in one nation against those in another," and only the "rich coffers of Europe and other trading partners" profit.

Church World Service (CWS) $1,103,119/$1,166,126*
In addition to information on CWS earlier in this Report, it funded the Interreligious Task Force on El Salvador and Central America in preparing a statement showing that "the Democratic Revolutionary Front," the political arm of the Marxist guerrillas in El Salvador was the legitimate representative of the people, and coordinated a speaking tour of five cities. While the NCC considers the U.S. to be the oppressor both at home and abroad, its spokesmen are supportive of Marxist countries, such as having praised Cuba and communist China. In addition to numerous other expenditures, more recently it has given $170,875 to the "Save the Children Fund." CWS has provided more than $386,000 to Vietnam and has done so for the past 35 years, despite protestations to the contrary. For the past decade, CWS has supported work in isolated villages in five provinces to upgrade health clinics, provide health education, and assist in water resource development. A component of the NCC, Church World Service receives money from its parent organization, CROP walks, and UMCOR in addition to other divisions of the GBGM. [5]

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(UM) Communications $11,000,000/year
In addition to its designated duties as designated by the UMC, UM Communications has involved itself in other areas as well:

- Pornography: Wilford Bane, head of the public media division of UM Communications, stated that "the UMC had not joined the defense of the Pink Pyramid Bookstore in Cincinnati." His comments came after the American Family Association (AFA) reported that UM Communications is a member of the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) that filed arguments in September (1994) defending that bookstore's right to rent "Salo, or 120 Days of Sodom." An AFA publication said the bookstore caters to homosexuals and that the video version of the 1975 film shows teen-age boys and girls being burned with candles, scalped, and forcibly sodomized. The coalition, with 41 participating organizations listed on its letterhead, filed a friend-of-the-court brief in August supporting the defendants' motions to dismiss the charges. [6] Note: UM Communications contributed $1500 to NCAC.
- Monitoring Group: UM Communications chief Judy Weidmann has formed a task force to "monitor" "conservative groups" like the Institute on Religion and Democracy (IRD), UMAction, and AFA. Weidmann's task force which includes Bishop Sharon Rader of Wisconsin, convened in April 1995 to discuss how to "mop up" when a controversial UM event "catches us unaware" and "all hell breaks loose." According to Weidman, the meeting cost $5,000. UM Communications receives $11,000,000 annually from the World Service apportionment collected from over 30,000 local UM churches. The April meeting included a briefing from Thomas MacAnally of UM News Service about UMAction Mark Tooley and Dr. Donald Wildmon of the AFA, which spotlighted UMCommunications membership in the National Coalition Against Censorship. Wildmon, a UM minister, charged UM Communications with "McCarthyism" after hearing that he was the topic of a "briefing." Since convening her task force, Weidman has pledged that UM Communications would not "just report the news" but would be a "critic" of "conservative elements" like IRD. [7]
- "Re-Imagining" Theologies: Ms. Weidman edited a book called Christian Femininsim: Visions of a New Humanity which uncritically featured the works of Rita Nakashima Brock, Rosemary Radford Ruether and other future Re-Imagining movement leaders who promote goddess substitutes for the "unholy" Trinity of Christianity. In the book's introduction, Weidman complains that, "Christianity reflects a male-dominated, hierarchical world-view." She calls upon feminists to "unravel the dominance of the patriarchy."[7] (See the Women's Division.)

The Council of Evangelical Methodist Churches in Latin America (CIEMAL) $151,514/$63,479* [L/FRN]
Complaints have been received from the field that this group was unresponsive to needs of persons in mission.

Cuba $68,248/$25,479* [L/FRN]
Even though this money is ostensibly channeled to the church in Cuba, there is concern that it will not be used for the purposes stated.

Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN) $10,000*
DAWN plans to undertake a critical assessment of the "so-called success stories" of the new industrialized countries" and to "consider the alternative paths to development." [F] This is seen as funding of various approaches to a socialized economy as a counter to capitalism.

Ecumenical Committee for Aid to Development (CEPAD) $48,151/$46,280*
CEPAD supports the Marxist Sandinista party in Nicaragua. Churches that refused to support the Sandinista government when it was in power were criticized by CEPAD. It has published a primer entitled "Capitalism and Socialism for Beginners," which lauds Cuban-style socialism as the "system that approaches closest to the Gospel ideal." [F,T] In its Nicaraguan Literacy Campaign, it portrayed the Sandinistas as the only legitimate form of social action in that country and called on students to memorize the Sandinista Hymn. Preliminary expenditures in 1995 are $5,500. [8]

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The Episcopal Fund (November, 1994-October, 1995) $13,998,500/yr.

- "Re-Imagining" Theologies: The bishops have as of yet not exercised decisive responsibility of doctrinal oversight (par. 514.2, page 280 of The Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church ) by addressing the spreading goddess worship that has resulted from the "Re- Imagining Conference," which retired Bishop Hunt called the "worst heresy in fifteen decades." The 1994 study of the concept of "wisdom" was termed by Bishop Cannon "inadequate." (See the Women's Division.)

- Homosexuality: At a meeting of a "Reconciling Congregations" convention in July, UM Reverend Jeanne Audrey Powers, deputy chief of the General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns, admitted that she was a lesbian; Bishop Grove, Christian Unity's president, called Powers' announcement "courageous" and "a good gift of God." Bishop Sharon Brown Christopher called her a "distinguished ecumenist" and "respected leader." Council of Bishops president Roy Sano and Bishop William Dew also attended this convention. [I] In another action, the Council of Bishops voted to amend Discipline paragraph 402.2 related to ordained ministry. Instead of language saying that "self-avowed practicing homosexuals are not to be accepted as candidates, ordained as ministers, or appointed" in the church, the bishops propose: "A person who is self-avowed, or proven with clear and convincing evidence, to be a practicing homosexual is not to be accepted as a candidate, ordained as a minister or appointed to serve in the UMC." A footnote would say, "Self-avowed is understood to mean that a person openly acknowledges to a bishop, D.S., district committed on ordained ministry, board of ordained ministry or clergy session that the person is a practicing homosexual." [9] This is interpreted to mean that it would be more difficult to prove conduct involving homosexuality in order to bring charges against a pastor under these provisions. For instance, the question could be raised, "Does this mean that a person could flaunt his lifestyle in front of any number of lay people without effect; does it take only ordained clergy to ascertain he is a practicing homosexual?"

- The Republican Contract with America: In April the Council of Bishops listened to Carol Rasco, Domestic Policy advisor to President Clinton, denounce the Republican "assault on our children." She alleged that the Contract With America is a "financial arrangement" that "favors the wealthy at the expense of the poor." Bishop Melvin Talbert joined a National Council of Churches press conference on Capitol Hill just before Easter to "encourage lawmakers who oppose the Republican contract." Talbert urged fasting and prayer during Holy Week to resist the Contract With America. "Who in good conscience could support it?" asked Talbert who is the NCC's president-elect.[10]

- Welfare Advocacy: In a letter (organized by the GBGM) sent this past summer to members of the U.S. Senate, 30 UM Bishops opposed cuts in social services programs that had been proposed for the 1996 budget. The Bishops alleged that a "me first mentality" in America has been fueled by "budget priorities over the last fifteen years." They expressed alarm that 'social disintegration' was resulting from the "absence of a comprehensive economic policy aimed at assuring that the basic needs of the people are met." Additionally, Bishop Melvin Talbert signed an October letter, organized by the National Council of Churches (NCC), to President Clinton which called budget cuts an "assault" upon the poor to enable "tax breaks" for the rich. The letter attacked military spending increases. [7]

- Cuba: For actions by the bishops in advocating for this country, please refer to the GBCS section on Cuba.

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The (UM) General Board of Church and Society (GBCS) $2,162,335/year
The GBCS believes that its chief function is to lobby our country's national leadership to achieve what they perceive as the political agenda of the UMC. This is accomplished by individual actions and through six areas: Peace with Justice Program, Environmental Justice Program, Ministry to God's Human Community, Human Welfare, Ministry of Resourcing Congregational Life, and Communications. Selected activities were:

- The Balanced Budget Amendment: 18 religious organizations, including the UM GBCS and the NCC sent a message to Congress urging opposition to the balanced budget amendment. They claim that it would cut effective programs serving low and moderate income people. The message noted that Congress needs to have the flexibility to respond to fiscal crises with the type of limits imposed by the amendment, and told Congress that even if religious bodies tripled their efforts to provide food, housing and other programs for low income people, "the religious community could handle only a tiny fraction of the need that is currently being met by the federal government." [11]

- Homosexuality: The GBCS has taken the lead in recommending that the 1996 General Conference overturn the church's opposition to the ordination of homosexuals. At its spring meeting, GBCS directors voted by a 6 to 1 margin to delete paragraph 71F in the Discipline, which states "we do not condone the practice of homosexuality," to be considered at the 1996 General Conference. The motion was originally submitted by Tex Sample, a professor at St. Paul's School of Theology in Kansas City, who has called homosexuality a "gift of God." Only 13 of the board's 80 directors opposed the proposal. [10]

- Cuba: An eleven member United Methodist team visited Fidel Castro's Cuba early in 1995 and liked what it saw. "Everyone had free education, free health care," said Ellen Carter about the Cuban dictatorship. She is a director on the Commission on the Status and Role of Women (COSROW) and shared her impressions at the GBCS's March directors meeting. "There were no rich, no mansions. No poor and no homeless on the streets. There was a sense of noncompetitiveness and of community. There was a richer life for many." The team was led by GBCS chief Thom White Wolf Fassett. In February, Fassett declared there to be no human rights problems in Cuba "at this time." He denounced the U.S. embargo as a "terrible scourge on the people of Cuba," which he said "it was meant to be." Fassett complained that despite the Cuban National Assembly President's having "graciously" visited the Methodist Building in Washington last fall, leaders from other church offices were disinterested. "Our task is not easy," said Fassett, who hopes to meet with President Clinton to urge better U.S. relations with Cuba. The GBCS is forming a task force to advocate an end to the U.S. embargo. The May meeting of the Council of Bishops also called for an end to the U.S. embargo. [7]

- Affirmative Action: GBCS officials are defending affirmative action programs to give preferential treatment to minority groups in the job market. In a letter sent this summer to U.S. senators, GBCS chief Thom White Wolf Fassett avowed that the UMC "opposes any and all amendments that may weaken existing affirmative action programs." Fassett cited the UM Book of Resolutions in his claim to speak for "over 9 million" church member in defending current affirmative action policies. (It should be noted that the UMC has 8.6 million members.) "The premise upon which affirmative action is built is essentially moral and spiritual in nature," according to Fassett and the Book of Resolutions. Hilary Shelton of GBCS did the same to Clinton in July; he directs the board's Ministry to God's Human Community. [7]

- Other Selected Political Activism: GBCS officials denounced the "Contract with America." At a February meeting of the Official UM Joint Panel on International Affairs in New York, Fassett declared that "Republican secular Christians are lying to our people. People are getting hoodwinked."....Director Peter Trainor replied that, "We define positions quite well but the local church never gets it." The GBCS has endorsed 14 Puerto Rican terrorists and is calling upon President Clinton to give these "political prisoners" immediate pardon. Most of them are affiliated with the FALN, a Puerto Rican (PR) revolutionary group that fought for a "free and socialist" PR by blowing up numerous buildings during the 1970s and 1980s. These blasts resulted in five deaths. The "political prisoners" are serving sentences that range up to 100 years each. None has expressed sorrow for his or her crimes, but our UM social action agency compared them to American patriots in the Revolutionary War and to the apostles Paul and Peter, who also were imprisoned for "political reasons." [10, 12]

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The (UM) General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM) The information presented here is far from comprehensive; a shortage of space precludes our giving more complete coverage and analysis of expenditures by the GBGM. Since this board is designated by the United Methodist Church's Book of Discipline as the "missional instrument" of the UMC, it has a primal responsibility to translate God's commands into practice. The largest agency in the UMC, it receives more money than does any other. In the examination of financial data, it should be noted that there is a discrepancy between the Treasurer's Report (TR) and the unaudited Financial Disclosure Report (FDR), both of which are published by the GBGM. For instance, income differences vary from the greatest in 1992 (TR: $120,467,706 versus FDR: $134,326,668 - a difference of $13,858,962, or 11.50%) to the least in 1994 (TR: $133,173,640 versus FDR: $133,770,208 - a difference of $596,568, or .448%). For the sake of consistency, FDR figures were used since this is the document that also lists organizations supported.

1992 1993 1994
GBGM Assets $276,674,082 $301,818,875 $295,956,199
GBGM Income 134,326,668 115,760,171 133,770,208
% Change of income 8.32% 13.82% 15.56%
from Previous Year Increase Decrease Increase

1992 1993 1994
Distributions/Grants
to organizations
$51,817,653 $46,468,369 $44,310,043
% of GBGM Budget 38.58% 40.14% 33.12%

1992 1993 1994
Administration/NYC
Office Support
$29,378,232 $30,523,799 $30,226,708
% of GBGM Budget 21.87% 26.37% 22.65%

1992 1993 1994
Direct Spt./Persons
in Mission (GBGM)
$21,109,952 $16,656,859 $16,392,710
% of GBGM Budget 15.72% 14.39% 12.25%

1992 1993 1994
Direct Spt./Pers. in
Mission (World Div.)
$13,193,732 $12,439,290 $11,361,989
% of GBGM Budget 9.82% 10.75% 8.49%

A full board meeting costs $350,000, while executive committee meetings cost $275,000. The GBGM spent $738,000 for two meetings in 1995 and has budgeted $855,785 for two in 1996. [F,I]

- The $133,770,208 received in 1994 reflected a 15.56% increase over the previous year's $115,760,171. Of 1994's total income, $20,607,182 came from World Service apportioned funds, $19,966,610 from the Women's Division funds/appropriations and from the United Methodist Women, and the rest from outside trusts and interest, dividends, capital gains from the GBGM's some $196,450,087 of investments in 1994 (up from $194,165,288 in 1993).

- $44,310,043, or 33.12% of the total budget is spent in distributions and grants, often to controversial organizations involved in socio-political causes and which have no accountability to the UMC.

- $16,392,710, or 12.25% of the total GBGM budget was spent on direct support of persons in mission both in the United States and abroad. Direct support of persons in the foreign mission field amounted to $11,361,989 - down from $12,439,290 in 1993 and $13,193,732 in 1992. While the support reflected as a portion of the overall GBGM budget (9.82% in 1992, 10.75% in 1993, and 8.49% in 1994) exhibited a rise in 1993, of significance is the pattern of decline of money actually reaching the mission field, not only for the World Division but for the entire GBGM as well. In the past, American Methodism fielded over 2500 missionaries in the 1920s, far more than any other Protestant denomination; by the 1960s it had declined to 1500, and to 516 in 1985. Presently there are 320 (foreign) missionaries with the World Division. Citing "budget problems" for 1993 and 1994, Robert J. Harman, World Division Executive states that 20 missionaries "must retire or not continue in missionary service" due to reduced funding. [13]

- At present, the "mainline denominations" account for only 9% of all of missionaries sent out to foreign countries. [14]

- Of the thirty major Protestant denominations, the UMC ranks in the bottom tenth of all the churches in ratio of missionaries per member.

- More money is spent on supporting the personnel and headquarters in New York City (a city that is one of the highest cost of living areas in the United States and the world) than on the entire missionary force: total expenditures on administration and support of the NYC office for 1994 was $20,226,708, while support of persons in overseas mission totaled $11,361,989.

The GBGM continues to espouse radical ideas such as "liberation theology" (the theology of some movements which espouse violence to achieve their goals) while eschewing traditional biblical Christianity. In conversation, a top GBGM executive was told by one of his missionaries that "an experience with Jesus Christ was a necessity to be a good missionary;" the executive's reply was, "That's a controversial statement." When questioned by a candidate for the foreign mission field about evangelism, another GBGM staffer stated, "Oh, we don't convert anyone to Christ; we let God do that." A dominant view is that to try to evangelize others is "to exhibit the height of spiritual arrogance" or "spiritual imperialism. The Bible states that "you can judge a tree by its fruit." Even so, GBGM priorities are best shown by the nature of the organizations listed in this Study that are funded with missional dollars. Despite the funded organizations and activities shown in this Report, there are many more not depicted. It should also be noted that certain trends are evident, such as increased funding of the NCC, the WCC, Angola, Mozambique, and organizations active in Nicaragua. This may reflect the financial crisis in which the NCC and the WCC have found themselves, while increased funding of CAV and CEPAD may reflect increased activism on behalf of restoring the Sandinistas to power. There has been a marked increase of money to organizations involved in various aspects of universal health advocacy, political activism, "environmental racism," "economic racism," and "justice" issues.

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"In kind contributions" are not financial grants, per se., but rather include assistance such as meeting space, administrative support, personnel actions, and/or the use of telephones, postage, meeting rooms, etc. They serve to enhance a given agenda. For instance, if thirty staffers who are paid an annual salary of $50,000 spend four months working on actions beneficial to homosexual advocacy, that provides $500,000 of "inkind support" for that agenda.

Examples are:

For 1993:
- CWS, NCC, Islamic Heritage Society, War Resisters League, Coalition against Impunity, Women Strike for Peace, Venceremos Brigade, NGO Committee on Disarmament.

For 1994:
- Church Women United, Church World Service & Witness, Islamic Heritage Society, Guatemalan Human Rights, Palestine Solidarity Community, Peace Action/SANE Freeze, U.N. Development fund for Women (UNIFEM), U.N. Delegations Women's Club, U.N. Monitoring Group, U.N. Women's Guild, Hands off Cuba Coalition, War Resisters League, Women Strike for Peace, Women's International League for Peace & Freedom (WILPF), World Conference on Religion & Peace. - 26 NGO (Non-governmental organizations) evidently in preparation for the Beijing Conference, U.S. NGO's to Social Summit. - Education for Mission/Friendship Press NCCUSA (National Council of Churches in the USA).

Selected activities in which the GBGM has been involved are:

GBGM Site Location

A UM Teenager wanted the GBGM to move to Independence, Kansas where the Atlantic Richfield Company is offering a free 140,000 square-foot building. Cody Nuss, 18, says he will appeal the decision of the site Selection Task Force to consider only Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, and Washington, D.C.. Don Messer is chair of the task force. [15]

Political Activism

At its Fall, 1994 directors' meeting, the GBGM called for friendlier U.S. ties with communist Cuba and North Korea. In addition to its promised support for the WCC investigation of alleged human rights abuses in the U.S., it donated $50,000 to the WCC for support of its investigation. (See the WCC section for a more complete explanations of this problem.) At its Spring, 1995 meeting, the GBGM called for U.S. relations with (communist) North Korea, the withdrawal of U.S. forces from South Korea, the promotion of Korean reunification, and the recognition of the U.S. role in "perpetuating the suffering and separation of the Korean people." At a GBGM "Urban Convocation" in February, UM professor Tex Sample declared that, "Newt (Speaker of the House Gingrich) will not finally win the day. God is on the side of the poor." Bishop Felton May blasted "politicians who want to starve the children, who want to write a contract when we have a constitution and a covenant with God." Joycelyn Elders, the former Surgeon General, reminded the audience that "Republicans have children too." At its April directors meeting, the GBGM denounced Republican ideas as "mean-spirited" and established a "Human Welfare Crisis Task Force" to resist congressional budget cuts. A delegation from the board's Women's Division will lobby Congress directly. Division chief Joyce Sohl claims there "are many demons in our midst today" as she bemoaned a "reshifting of national priorities towards military preparedness" and away from "children's health and education." Both the GBGM and the bishops oppose cuts in welfare programs; see the section on the "Episcopal Fund" for their advocacy in this area. [10]

"Re-Imagining" Theologies

At its Fall, 1994 directors' meeting The daily Bible studies by Charles Amjad-Ali, Pakistani clergyman and official with the WCC, referred to God as "he," "she," and "it" and spoke of a confused Jesus with His "society's prejudices" needing correction from women. [10] For further information on GBGM's support of radical feminist theologies and goddess worship, see the Women's Division section.

Beijing Conference

The UMC...and others sent dozens of women to participate in the NGO Forum; some of them also had access to the formal UN conference and worked to influence the 121-page Platform for Action. The UM Women's Division has had representatives at a series of State Department discussions this summer and has also funded Bella Abzug's Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO), which is taking the lead in lobbying for a radical agenda at the Beijing conference. See the sections on the United Nations and the Women's Division for a more complete discussion of the Beijing Conference.[16]

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Health Care We Gotta Have It (HCWGHI) $5,000
HCWGHI is only one of the many groups financed that is lobbying for universal access to national health care.

Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), $2,400 (1991)
Located in Washington, DC, IPS actively lobbies against virtually all U.S. defense programs and opposes U.S. policies in Central America. It places blame for the Vietnam War solely on the U.S. "An American Manifesto" by IPS co-founders Richard Barnet and Marcus Raskin states that "America must be made safe for the world." As Barnet puts it in his Invention and Revolution , "The world must be made safe for revolution." IPS fellow Saul Landau produced several documentary films lauding Fidel Castro's Cuba. During the Vietnam War, Barnet, Raskin, and others both led demonstrations against the U.S. involvement in the war and made propagandistic statements on behalf of North Vietnam. After the war was over, Barnet and Cora Weiss signed a full-page ad in the January 30, 1977 issue of The New York Times affirming their solidarity with the communist regime. In neighboring Cambodia, IPS associates were very slow to accept the reports of genocide perpetrated by the Khmer Rouge regime. It also attempted to undermine U.S. intelligence agencies while defending various Soviet policy objectives. Barnet described as "the big lie of our time" the idea that the former Soviet Union was a threat to peace and freedom. When Soviet troops subsequently invaded Afganistan, Barnet and Weiss denounced the United States for poisoning superpower relations and provoking this "defensive" military act. IPS opposes transnational corporations as instruments of "repression".[R,T]

Interfaith Action for Economic Justice (IAEJ) $20,568/-/-/$10,272*
Located in the United Methodist Building in Washington, DC, IAEJ advocates a more "just international economic system" including alleviation of debts incurred by Third World nations. IAEJ often opposes U.S. military assistance to foreign nations.[T]

Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) $59,774/$68,100*
ICCR demands that defense contractors convert their efforts to "peaceful" industry. [T]

Interfaith/IMPACT $44,000/$26,000*
IMPACT is a Washington political lobbying group, which generally tries to stay within the range of debate on Capitol Hill, because it does want to have a tangible impact on selected issues. It avoids the most radical or extremist positions of some groups funded by the GBGM, generally falling on the liberal side of most public policy debates. It maintains that the Reagan Administration was "cruel, evil, and deceptive" in both its foreign and domestic policies. More recently, two examples are its positions on military spending and health care - on both, it is to the left of President Clinton. Partial funding for 1995 is currently at $14,000. [8]

Inter-Religious Health Care $5,000*
This, as several other similar groups, is funded with church money and lobbies for universal access to national health care.

Joint Seminar on Natl. & Internatl. Affairs/Women's Division$170,000/ $69,999.98*
Funds seminars for adults and youth on international political affairs adopting a position left of center.

Korea Church Coalition (KCC), $6,700/$2,000*
The KCC, which has faulted the U.S. for "making threats" against North Korea's nuclear weapons program, has already received $4,200 for 1995 in addition to office space. [8]

Mozambique $135,700/$215,410* [A/FRN]

National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (NCADP) $2500/$1500*
Actively strives to proscribe use of the death penalty.

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National Council of Churches (NCC) $727,484/$974,997*
Located at 475 Riverside Drive in new York City, the NCC has had an extensive political agenda that does not reflect the position of significant portions of the UMC membership. It has expressed opposition to: the Contras in Nicaragua, the death penalty, public school prayer, U.S. aid for Afghan guerrillas, the display of religious symbols such as a nativity scene on public grounds, U.S. aid to El Salvador, U.S. aid to the Philippine democratic government, etc. A 1978 NCC study book praised Mao Tse-tung's rule in China by comparing him to the Good Samaritan, and his Cultural Revolution to church "renewal movements." Subsequent "mission studies" on Korea, the Soviet Union, South Africa, and the Caribbean use defective analyses and arrive at faulty conclusions. Leaders of a 1984 NCC tour to the Soviet Union echoed the official line that Soviet Christians enjoyed full freedom to practice their faith.

Political Advocacy

Civil Rights Hearing in the U.S.

U.S. churches have taken part in an ecumenical campaign on human rights and racism that will culminate in testimony before the UN. The campaign, "Racism Is a Violation of Human Rights," is co-sponsored by the WCC and the NCC. It included hearings from October 7 - 19, 1994 in seven cities - New York, NY; Chicago, IL; Ocmulgee, Okla.; Oakland, CA; El Paso, TX; Birmingham, AL; and Washington, D.C. The GBGM's National Division, General Commission on Religion and Race, and the Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns helped fund these hearings.[17] (See WCC)

Homosexual Advocacy

The NCC has recently urged legislation that would add affirmative action programs for and extend civil rights protection to gays and lesbians.

Separation of Church and State

"NCC executives support separation of Church and State" was in a statement delivered to VP Al Gore, which also stated that it is wrong to portray the U.S. as either a Christian or a Judeo-Christian nation, that public schools may not support religious exercises, but the schools should accommodate the religious rights of students when that can be done without disrupting the learning process or interfering with the rights of others. [18]

Union Activism

The NCC's Racial Justice Working Group is supporting the Fuerza Unida garment workers union in its efforts to negotiate outstanding grievances against Levi Strauss & Co. [19]

The Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA)

The NCC has lobbied against the BBA, and opposes the Republican Contract with America (RCA). See the section on the GBCS for a description of advocacy against the BBA and the Episcopal Fund section for opposition to the RCA. It should be noted that the NCC organized the letter signed by Talbert decrying congressional budget cuts as an "assault" on the poor.

Health Care

The general secretary of the NCC supported the Mitchell Bill that would provide for universal health care. Joan Brown Campbell told an August 11 press conference that universal health care is "the most important social legislation since Social Security." She noted, "Story after painful story documents the tragedies embedded in our present health-care system." [20]

Proposition 187

The 271-member General Board also challenged the constitutionality of Proposition 187, which was recently approved by California voters. The board asked NCC General Secretary Joan Brown Campbell to write Gov. Pete Wilson, urging him not to implement the proposition immediately. "Many of us have been struggling against Prop 187 since its inception," said Bishop Melvin G. Talbert (SF) [21]

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Foreign Affairs :

Korea and Cuba

In May, 1988 an NCC Washington Office staffer testified to a House committee that North Korea was "a fiercely independent state with a philosophy of self-reliance," where the people seemed quite happy. A 1990 NCC mission study on Central America referred to "the success of the socialist revolution in Cuba" as a model for the rest of Latin America. In 1993, the NCC General Board adopted resolutions calling for an end to the U.S. trade embargo with Cuba and for extending diplomatic relations to North Korea, while ignoring continuing human rights abuses in each. (See Cuba in GBCS section.) A 1993 mission study on the Caribbean proclaimed the wisdom of liberation theology and the glories of the Castro regime in Cuba. (Note: Amnesty International has cited both countries for human rights violations, in addition to the fact that Cuban refugees by the thousands are continuing to flee that country for the United States.)

Church leaders apologized to Japan

Personnel from the NCC were among 7,500 signatories of a letter of apology to Japan which described themselves as "peace-loving people of our country who grieve over the decision of our government to drop the bomb and the unimaginable pain inflicted upon the families and survivors of the doomed cities." They declared, "We are deeply sorry for the agony caused by these actions, and we ask for your forgiveness."..."we feel it necessary to acknowledge and atone for the decision of our nation to introduce the use of atomic weapons." The letter pledged continued efforts toward "universal disarmament and the creation of a global culture of peace." Among the signatories of this letter was NCC General Secretary Joan Brown Campbell. [22]

Haiti and Primacy of the UN

The Haitian government of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide must be restored as quickly as possible, per the NCC. An Aug. 4 statement also called for the continuation of an embargo and the sealing of the border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The council urged the U.S. to take all future actions within the context of the UN. [23] A four-member delegation of the NCC pressed concerns about Haiti with an adviser of President Clinton. The delegation led by James M. Hamilton, NCC deputy general secretary, asked presidential adviser William H. Gray to urge U.S. officials to act within the context of the UN to restore the Aristide government and to adhere to UN standards relating to the status of refugees. [17]

Some of the other groups in this Stewardship Report are also funded by the NCC. Mainline denominations belonging to the NCC including the UMC have suffered severe membership losses in recent years.[T]


National Interreligous Task Force on Criminal Justice $3,000/$1,500*
This is seen as another of the organizations advocating a "more equitable criminal justice system" in areas such as parity.

National Ecumenical Movement of Puerto Rico (PRISA) $5,000/$4,000*
PRISA seeks to remove U.S. "colonialism" from Puerto Rico. Its selfdescribed mission is it "sponsors lectures on environment and natural resources in high schools and universities." [T]

The North American Congress on Latin America (NACLA), $4,000* (1992)
NACLA favors "revolutionary change in Latin America," as well as "revolutionary struggle at home." At one point, NACLA offered to support a "revolutionary peace corps" to send young Americans to work with leftist Latin American guerrillas. [T]

The Policy Alternatives for the Caribbean and Central America (PACCA), $4,000 (1992)*
PACCA opposes U.S. policy in Latin America. The Sandinista literacy program in Nicaragua has been praised by PACCA in spite of its strong promotion of Marxist ideologies. [T]

Southerners for Economic Justice*, $12,000/-/$8800*
This organization's self-described mission is as "a multiracial organization that works to extend civil rights into southern workplaces and to advance economic development that benefits workers and marginalized people."

Thinking of God Differently, Lima, Peru $10,000 (1993 only)*
This is seen as an extenuation of the theologies presented at the "Re- Imagining Conference on the "varied concepts of God."

"Undesignated/No description found/Payee name not found" $442,004*
Although evidences of this were found in the past, the figure given here is for 1994 only. At best, this indicates a lack of financial responsibility in this money being expended with no record of the payee, nor a record of the cause for which the money was paid; at worst, this would be an obfuscation of the recipient to preclude disclosure. The World Division was by far the worst offender in this area with 3.63% of its moneys being used in this way.

United Church of Christ in the Philippines $18,994/$1,352*
Despite the small amount shown for 1994, there were numerous entries of donations made to other mainline denominations in varying capacities both in the United States and abroad, such as the Episcopal Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), and others.

United Methodist "Joint Seminars on National & International Affairs" $140,000 (1992 only)*
Seminars are conducted by the GBGM Women's Division at the United Nations in New York City and by the General Board of Church and Society in Washington, DC on national and international affairs; youth are heavily involved. Participants from across the country are instructed on "how the poor and ethnic minorities are paying for the arms race," "Biblical foundations for peacemaking," and how the UMC is involved in "peace and justice work."[T] Although there was no money listed for 1993 and 1994, it is known that these seminars are conducted, possibly with the costs being accounted through other funds.

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The United Nations

In addition to the support described below, it should be remembered that our church's leadership, the GBCS, the GBGM, the NCC, and the WCC - all supported with UM dollars - advocate at the highest levels of government on behalf of the UN, urging our nation's leaders to not take unilateral action but to effect all actions through that body.

The UN Fourth World (Beijing) Conference on Women ($50,000-$150,000)
Estimated cost for each participant is: $2,000-$6,000 each, with $6,000 being the more plausible cost. The Fourth World Conference on Women held recently in Beijing, China was attended by 25 UM women. Pamela Sparr, an executive with the Women's Division (WD), and some 24 other UM staff and directors of the GBGM and the GBCS attended the August 20 - September 15 conference. The GBGM delegation included women from Argentina, Zaire, and Burundi. GBGM is a member of the "U.S. Ecumenical Women's Network: Beijing and Beyond." [24] This conference promoted, among a plethora of ideologies, the idea that there are five genders (as opposed to two): male, female, homosexual, bisexual, and transsexual. [25] Evidences of "goddess" worship abounded. A giant "goddess of joy" who is "holy and pure" overlooked the stadium site for the August 30 opening of the NGO forum, a parallel event to the Fourth World Conference on Women. [26] (See WD section)

Seminars at that event included:

"Daughters of the Earth - The Second World Women's Congress for a healthy planet," was dedicated to the Chinese goddess Nu Kwa, the Great Mother who "repaired the universe, establishing harmony and balance to nature's patterns." Participants were told they must say thank you to mother earth over and over every day because she gives life. The program was dedicated each day, with one exception, to the goddesses Songi, Athena, Tara, Pasowee, Ishtar, Ixmucane, Aditi, and Nashe. Pamela Sparr, an executive with the UM GBGM's Women's Division, participated in a presentation which was in honor of Songi, the "great Mother" who gave the Bantu women houses, fruit, and livestock...

"Lesbian Activism from an Interfaith Perspective" was led by an all-lesbian panel. Selisse Berry, Presbyterian and National Coordinator of Christian Lesbians Out Together (CLOUT) talked about being a feminist and lesbian. Panelists spoke of the connections they find in such organizations as CLOUT and within the Church.

"Women, Religion, & Culture" identified traditional Christianity as imperialistic, patriarchal, colonistic, capitalistic, ecocentric, racist, and homophobic." According to one presenter, "Feminism is also a religion....I want all of us to remember...we are the transformer maker and creator of our own religious and cultural tradition."

"Goddess and Women Hand in Hand" put forth the theme that women are creators of their own religious tradition. The woman leading this program said, "Women who believe in the spirit of the world and the energy of the goddess have gone a long way. I have met goddesses from around the world which gave me the idea that we need to start a network." One woman from New York shared that a shrine to the feminine was being built, organized by her goddess circle which is more than four years old.

"Religion and Culture - Force for Women" offered the story of one woman who told of leaving the Catholic Church to become a Wiccan and said she finds "the faith of peace, justice, harmony, and joy" there.

"Lesbian Flirting Techniques" - the name was self-explanatory.

Lesbianism and abortion were accepted as normal and right. [27]


Washington Office on Africa (WOA) $28,000/$22,500*
Located at the United Methodist Building in Washington, DC, WOA supported the Marxist Patriotic Front in Zimbabwe and now supports the Marxist governments in Angola and Mozambique.[T] It lobbied on Capitol Hill against U.S. funding for UNITA, the anti-communist insurgents in Angola under Dr. Jonas Savimbi.

Washington Office on Latin America $2,000/$2,500*
Located at the United Methodist building in Washington, DC, WOLA was founded by a UM missionary. It supports the Sandinistas in Nicaragua and lobbied against U.S. aid to the Contras. WOLA sponsored trips to the U.S. by representatives of the Salvadoran Marxist front. [T]

WEDO/Women USA Fund, Inc. $1500* (1994 only)
WEDO is a New York based feminist group co-chaired by Bella Abzug, renown for her socialist, radical feminist views (she was an admirer of Stalin while he was alive). [R]

Witness for Peace (WP) $10,000/$10,000*
WP supports the Sandinistas in Nicaragua and has denied there had ever been persecution of the Christian Church in that country. [T]

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(The) Women's Division (WD) of the General Board of Global Ministries:

The Women's Division is a dynamic, capable part of the GBGM. Its revenue generating skills would be the envy of any fund-raising organization in the country, and much of its money goes to support good causes. Unfortunately, some finds its way into questionable use; misleading rhetoric further clouds the reality of its ultimate destination. For instance, many fund raising activities are used to raise money to go directly into "missions," with visions of support provided to feed a "hungry child" or to care for a "poverty-stricken family." But in reality, this money goes into one of several funds comprising the WD's over $90,000,000 in assets. From there it is channeled into any number of causes, some of which are listed in this study. Further confusing the issue is an imprecise definition of the term "missions." Traditionally, evangelicals understand it to mean caring for the physical needs of people coupled with attempts to lead them into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. Money raised by UM tithes and other fund raising activities may be used to support true missions, but it is more likely that it will go to something entirely different: from providing socio/political services for people to funding attendance at events such as the "Re-Imagining" Conference.

Following is an examination of funding for the Women's Division for the most current three years:

1992 1993 1994
WD Assets $93,285,090 $97,308,264 $92,911,935
WD Income 20,565,318 41,217,822 34,341,262
% Change of income 3.42% 100.42% 16.68%
From Previous Year Decrease Increase Decrease

Listed below are some of the activities supported by the WD, in addition to that provided other organizations included in this study:

The "Re-Imagining" Conference

$35,081 was used to pay all of the expenses for the attendance of 36 directors, 9 staff members, and 11 UMW conference vice presidents at this event. An additional $2,500 was given to the Minnesota Conference United Methodist Women for the "Global Theological Conference Re-Imagining" to provide Minnesota scholarships. [R] The aberrant theologies propounded at this event have been discussed in past editions of The Christian Methodist Newsletter .**

The Church Center for the UN $1,195,600 for 1995 The Church Center for the UN, which is located across the street from the UN, is owned and operated by the Women's Division (WD) of the GBGM. (The WD section of Christian Social Relations appropriations worksheet showed funds allocated for UN/International Affairs totaling over $60,000 annually for the years 1992-1994) (R, p.1)

Supported activities relating to the "goddess" worship theologies and the UN conference in Beijing in 1995 :

- Ecumenical Decade: $20,000
Self-described as "to support the initiatives of the decade" in relation to the WCC "Decade of Churches in Solidarity with Women" that had spawned the "Re-Imagining" Conference.

- NGO Planning Committee/NGO Forum on Women $341,149*
In addition to the "In Kind Contributions," this is seen as supporting the participation by the WD in the UN's Beijing Conference. (See GBGM)

- General:
In addition, the WD has worked with organizations such as Development Alternatives with Women of a New Era (DAWN), funded by UM money with $10,000 in 1994 and $10,000 in 1995 (World & Women's Division); Alternative Women-In-Development (Alt-WID), UM support of $1,500 in 1994, an increase of $500 over 1993; and Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO), UM support of $1,500 in 1994.


The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) In Kind Support

WILPF charged that the U.S. military "threatens the future of all the peoples of the world" by "attempting to control the governments of other nations, whether by military intervention or subversive manipulation by the CIA." But when Soviet troops invaded Afghanistan, the WILPF was sympathetic. On economic issues, it is socialistic: "Production for private profit...fosters war, racism, violence, and social and economic injustice. Fundamental economic change is needed to achieve more equitable distribution of resources through public ownership of the sources of wealth." In the U.S., it favors abortion, abolition of prisons and the death penalty, a guaranteed annual income, and homosexual rights. A recent WILPF magazine featured as its cover story "Lesbians: We Are Your Sisters." [R]

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The World Council of Churches (WCC) $731,565/$787,348*
With offices at 475 Riverside Drive, WCC is controlled by advocates of liberation theology and supports "liberation movements" throughout the world. The WCC has distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars annually to various "liberation movements" throughout the world, many of which employ acts of terrorism and advocate Marxism in some form. (See the study below on the WCC's involvement with terrorist groups in southern Africa.) In addition to being the subject of several studies for its varying theology, the WCC came under fire in the February 1993 Reader's Digest article, "The Gospel According to Marx" for its influence by the Soviet KGB. The Institute on Religion and Democracy's president Diane Knippers stated, "I agree that the KGB has done damage to the WCC and its witness to the world." This has been reinforced by Russian dissidents themselves who have criticized the WCC and mainline churches for their silence in the face of persecution by Soviet authorities. Russian Orthodox priest Rev. Gleb Yakunin has obtained top secret police reports showing that KGB agents sat on the World Council. The WCC's silence in the face of Marxist atrocities and use of money from its "Program to Combat Racism" grant to buy military equipment for Marxist forces have provided effective support for that ideology. More recently, both the NCC and the WCC launched a campaign in November, 1993 to study and publicize "the deteriorating situation" regarding human rights in the United States. It is "investigating" high rates of incarceration of African-American males, police brutality, and the alleged existence of more than 100 "political prisoners" currently being held in the United States. In this investigation, the NCC and the WCC have charged the U.S. with a "consistent pattern of gross violations of human rights" before the United Nations. Testimony was given before the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva by the NCC and the WCC that "resurgent racism" has brought the United States to the edge of a "race war." The NCC/WCC's evidence included the promotion of "Englishonly" policies, the "Contract with America," California's Proposition 187, the November 1994 "revolution of 4 million angry white men" along with other charges. This lent support to a resolution by Cuba for permanent UN monitoring of racism in the U.S. (See the note on this investigation, and human rights violations by Cuba in the NCC section.)

A more in depth discussion of the WCC's involvement in southern Africa:

The WCC is especially famous for its direct grants to various terrorist organizations. From 1970 to 1986 alone the WCC gave $754,500 to the African National Congress (ANC), $1,348,500 to the South West Africa People's Organization (SWAPO), and $391,500 to the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC), as indicated by the chart below. Of the $6,906,545 given by the WCC's Program to Combat Racism (PCR) from 1970 to 1986, a period spanning 17 years, $2,494,500 (or 36 per cent) went to these three groups. The ANC is active in South Africa and SWAPO is active in Namibia. It should be noted that there were no grants in 1972 and 1979, possibly because of severe criticism of the PCR at those times.

The African National Congress was until 1989 a multiracial guerrilla groups fighting to overthrow the white minority government of South Africa (SA). At the time of its activism, over half of the members of the ANC Executive Committee were also members of the South African Communist Party.[R] It would use the tactic of "necklacing" (burning alive) selected people to exert political coercion on the others. The ANC has shown the possibility of moderating its tactics, although political turbulence persists in South Africa. It should be noted that with the advent of the ANC to power and the formulation of a new constitution for that country, there is no reference to God or a Divine Power for the first time ever in its constitutional history.

The South West Africa People's Organization was a group fighting the SA colonial government of Namibia until it reached an agreement for peace. Officially Marxist-Leninist at that time, SWAPO was accused by over 200 former members of imprisonment and torture for political dissent. Since that time, complaints against them have been chronic.[R]

The Pan Africanist Congress of Azania is a radical black "liberation movement" from SA that regards whites as "settlers" who must be expelled or killed. Like the ANC, the PAC engaged in guerrilla warfare before 1990, and black youths claiming PAC allegiance have been responsible for an increase in black-on-white violence in the past few years. The PAC's unofficial motto has been "one settler, one bullet."[R]

Historical WCC Contributions to African Guerrilla Groups

Year ANC SWAPO PAC TOTAL
1970 $10,000 $ 5,000 - $15,000
1971 5,000 25,000 - 30,000
1973 2,500 20,000 2,500 25,000
1974 15,000 30,000 15,000 60,000
1975 45,000 83,500 45,000 173,000
1976 50,000 85,000 50,000 185,000
1977 25,000 125,000 25,000 175,000
1978 25,000 125,000 25,000 175,000
1980
150,000 200,000 - 350,000
1981 65,000 125,000 45,000 235,000
1982 65,000 100,000 45,000 210,000
1983 70,000 105,000 50,000 225,000
1984 70,000 100,000 30,000 200,000
1985 77,000 110,000 33,000 220,000
1986 80,000 110,000 26,000 216,000

When complaints were made against SWAPO in the Fall of 1989, Emilio Castro, General Secretary of the WCC, acknowledged the charges of beating and torture tactics being used by SWAPO - and then handed the organization a check for $165,000. It has been ascertained that contributions of a more recent nature by the WCC to the ANC and SWAPO have occurred. Further research is attempting to learn the amounts and periods.

World Student Christian Federation (WSCF), $17,831/ - /$65,067*
WSCF is nominally a Christian group but it supports the revolutions in Cuba and Nicaragua, as well as the PLO and SWAPO terrorist groups.(T)

Zimbabwe $195,315/$136,296* [A/FRN]

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ENDNOTES

Unless otherwise indicated, financial data on all of the organizations listed in the study came from the following sources:

  • Report of the Treasurers of the General Board of Global Ministries for the years covering 1991, 1992, 1993, and 1994.
  • Financial Disclosure Report of the General Board of Global Ministries of the United Methodist Church for the years 1992, 1993, and 1994.
  • The Daily Christian Advocate for the General Conference of the United Methodist Church , covering the 1992-1996 quadrennium.

Notes:
A

With the political changes that have occurred in the southern half of Africa in the past two decades and the public demise of the ANC, SWAPO, and PAC, these groups are being monitored to see what effect they are having in the political arena in countries that are Marxist or have significant Marxist influence.

G

Good News magazine, published by the Forum for Scriptural Christianity, 309 East Main Street, Wilmore, Kentucky 40390

F

The Forum for Scriptural Christianity, 309 East Main Street, Wilmore, Kentucky 40390.

FRN

Further research is needed and being conducted on a continuing basis.

I

The Institute on Religion and Democracy, 1521 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036

L

With the political changes that have occurred in Latin America in the past three decades, these groups are being monitored to see how they are affecting the political arena in this area.

N

These groups are being monitored to see how they affect the national arena in political, economic, and/or social advocacy.

R

RENEW/ECUMW - The Evangelical Women's Network. Paper by Faye Short, RENEW/ECUMW Network . For a review of UMW expenditures, order the ECUMW/RENEW Financial File II, from: RENEW, 587 Raford Wilson Road, Commerce, GA 30529. Cost: $5.00

T

The study by United Methodists for More Faithful Ministry written by Mr. Mark Tooley.

U

UMAction, Washington, DC.

*Financial support given by the General Board of Global Ministries. The GBGM has the largest budget of any of the general boards and agencies, and is the most prolific supporter of non-UM groups, causes, and agencies.
** If you have not received the edition of The Christian Methodist

Newsletter including this information, a back issue may be received free of charge by requesting it.

  1. Biases and Blind Spots , by Professor R. L. Wilson, Bristol Books.
  2. Rekindling the Flame , by professors William H. Willimon and Robert L. Wilson of Duke University, Abingdon Press.
  3. The Coercive Utopians , by Dr. Rael Jean and Erich Isaacs, Regnery Gateway Books.
  4. Newscope, October 6, 1995, page 2.
  5. Newscope, February 18, 1994, p. 3.
  6. Newscope, December 9, 1994, p. 1.
  7. UMAction, Fall, 1995.
  8. Good News , July/Aug 95, p. 41.
  9. Newscope November 5, 1995, p. 1.
  10. UMAction Briefing, Spring 1995, p. 1.
  11. The United Methodist Reporter (UMR), February 10, 1995, p. 4.
  12. Mark Tooley's Letter, November 9, 1995.
  13. UMR, November 5, 1993, p. 3.
  14. Speech by Dr. Gerald Anderson, CONVO 90 in Louisville, Kentucky.
  15. Newscope September 2, 1994, p. 2.
  16. IRD Partnership Briefing, Summer 1995, p. 1.
  17. Newscope September 9, 1994.
  18. Newscope July 29, 1994, p. 3.
  19. Newscope December 9, 1994, p. 4.
  20. Newscope August 19, 1994, p. 4.
  21. Newscope November 18, 1994, p. 1.
  22. IRD Briefing, Summer, 1995, p. 2.
  23. Newscope August 19, 1994, p. 3.
  24. Newscope August 11, 1995, p. 3.
  25. Washington Times , July 20, 1995, page A1; Beijing report, by Focus on the Family.
  26. "Spiritual Quest in Beijing," Good News ; the IRD report by attendee Diane Knippers.
  27. Good News , Nov/Dec 1995, pages 34-35, based on reports from RENEW attendees Nancy Smith and Donna Maxfield.

For more updated information on expenditures within the United Methodist Church and affiliated ecumenical groups, a copy of the expanded 1997 Stewardship Report of the United Methodist Church will be sent in consideration of a donation of fifteen dollars to Concerned Methodists. The support for our ministry is provided entirely from voluntary contributions.

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