Q & A With the Presbytery Treasurer

As treasurer of the presbytery, Mr. George Robinson is the man responsible for the finances of our denomination. He is the chairman of the Finance Committee while Mr. Tim Farr manages the funds in the United States. The presbytery finances are carefully managed by the Finance Committee to fund each cause undertaken by the presbytery and to make each contribution count. I put the following questions to Mr. Robinson to help readers understand more of the checks and balances placed upon the distribution of finances of the FPCNA. Editor.

Who are the other members of the Finance Committee?

Currently we have four other members: Mr. Tim Farr, Rev. Ian Goligher, Rev. Anthony D’Addurno, and Rev. John Wagner.

What are the responsibilities of the Finance Committee?

The Finance Committee exists to coordinate and oversee the joint financial projects of the Free Presbyterian churches in the U.S. and Canada. The Finance Committee also prepares an annual budget for approval by the presbytery at the October presbytery meetings.

What are the main projects undertaken by the presbytery that require funding?

Funding is primarily required for the Seminary (GRS), foreign missions, and assistance to new and existing works.

How are monies raised to support presbytery projects?

Each constituted church is required by the presbytery to remit a ten percent levy based on its annual income. This source of funding provides a consistent income year after year.

Are funds raised above the ten percent levy?

Apart from the levy system, church members can and do designate to denominational missions and special projects. In particular, a substantial part of the Foreign Missions Committee’s budgeted income is met through the tithing of individuals.

How does the Finance Committee set about preparing a budget for the presbytery?

Currently, we have finished the 2020 budget which required churches to summit their latest financial statements with their levy amounts based on the previous financial year. We projected what funds will be on hand by the end of the current year (2019) and then worked from available and projected funds to meet the various budget requests from the Seminary Committee, Foreign Missions Committee, etc.

Does the presbytery allow the Finance Committee to go into debt in its annual budget?

The short answer is no. As stewards of the tithes and offerings of God’s people, we realize that there are times of fatness and leanness, and we must respond accordingly. We are reminded often that despite our efforts at supplying the needs via various methods and schemes, ultimately, we have to exercise faith that the Lord will provide according to His will.

Are funds available for capital projects such as building funds?

Since the commencement of our presbytery in North America when we commenced the levy scheme, we have built up a capital fund from which churches can borrow to undertake new capital projects or to upgrade existing facilities.

Who has the final say in the distribution of presbytery funds?

The budget and whatever recommendations the FC presents at its meeting in October for the following year are presented to the presbytery for its final adoption.

Is the budget for 2020 sufficient to meet the needs of the seminary, missions, churches and outreach endeavors?

If all ministries work within their allocated funding and there are no unexpected emergencies, there should be sufficient funds. We must work within our means and we must wait on the Lord for His blessing upon our stewardship of all that He is pleased to provide. I ask that all readers pray for God’s blessing to meet the financial requirements of our denomination and I take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed, either through their local church, or by designated gifts to presbytery appeals for special assistance.

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By Ian Goligher

Rev. Ian Goligher is the pastor of Cloverdale FPC, Vancouver, BC. He was Editor of Current from 2014 to 2019.