A recently released financial management survey explores the overall financial health of churches across America. Conducted by the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA), the survey includes responses from nearly 900 churches, with 43 percent of those churches carrying an operating budget of $4 million to $5 million and around 15 percent with a budget of $250,000 or less.
Six specific findings provide insights into the financial health of churches—and opportunities for improvements.
1. Perception versus reality
Churches feel pretty good about the effectiveness of their financial policies and budgeting. Of those surveyed, 86 percent of churches indicate they are "very effective in financial policies" and about 88 percent say they are "very effective in budgeting." These high statistics, however, contrast with the findings that half are undecided or don't believe they are "very effective in internal control" and 43 percent are undecided about whether "our finance department is very effective."