Is there ever a time in a church's financial accounting when it's best to completely rebuild?

When I was in college in South Dakota, my pastor at the time called me up and said, "The church treasurer is moving out of state. And you're taking accounting classes; I was wondering if you'd do that." I would just like to say, A) don't trust college students to do your books. They don't know what you're doing. But B) how dumb was it of me to say, "Sure, I'd be happy to!"

So they brought over the information, and it was on an old agriculture program. They weren't even using anything remotely related to a church. When I loaded it onto my computer it crashed, so I had to recreate everything. I started with the reports that already existed, but shortly into my time, people kept asking me—the pastor and some of the board members—how much was in the building fund.

There wasn't a building fund—not at all. But they insisted that there was $200,000 in a "building fund" and I needed to look for it.

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Posted: February 19, 2015
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