Education and training are essential aspects of leading churches. The commitment to continually learn helps ensure pastors, staff members, board members, and volunteers stay sharp. It also helps ensure everyone stays current on key developments and trends.
Dozens of conferences offer this type of training. Many require significant investments of time and money, which makes it all the more important for leaders to wisely choose which ones they attend. For those who work with legal, financial, and risk management matters for their church, Church Law & Tax highly encourages extensive research before registering to attend seminars, workshops, and conferences. Unfortunately, a number of unscrupulous individuals target churches by purporting to provide tax and law information that is either erroneous, inaccurate, or misleading. Caution should be exercised.
To further assist with discerning which events are worthwhile, Church Law & Tax has selected seven conferences church leaders should try to attend. These events involve individuals and organizations that Church Law & Tax trusts. These events, and those associated with them, are reputable, both in terms of the information provided and the ministry-minded intentions they carry.
The list below is organized in chronological order:
The 2020 theme for this 16-year-old event, led by XPastor.org founder David Fletcher, is “The Ancient Art of Teamwork.” The two-day conference is designed to educate and encourage executive pastors, senior pastors, and other church leaders. The workshop and general sessions will cover key leadership and management issues facing medium-sized, large-sized, and multisite churches.
Keynote speakers include CPA Michael Batts, a senior editorial advisor for Church Law & Tax, and attorney David Middlebrook, an advisor-at-large for Church Law & Tax. Matthew Branaugh from Church Law & Tax will attend.
Dates: February 19-20, 2020
Location: Dallas, Texas
Registration cost: $775
Now in its 64th year, the Church Network (TCN) hosts the longest-running national conference serving church business administrators. This year’s theme is “20/20 New Vision.” It will offer a full daily schedule with general keynote speakers, a wide range of workshops, and an exhibit hall with more than 100 vendors serving the church market.
Attorney and CPA Richard Hammar, senior editor of Church Law & Tax, will present a keynote address on key legal, tax, and risk management developments. Church Law & Tax also will attend.
Dates: July 8-11, 2020
Registration cost: Varies due to change for virtual event in 2020.
Can’t make it? TCN also has more than 80 local chapters that meet monthly. These chapters offer guest speakers who cover various topics related to church administration.
Attorney Erika Cole, a senior editorial advisor for Church Law & Tax, and her firm, Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, will host this one-day virtual conference for pastors and church leaders, including executive pastors, trustees, church administrators, and finance officers. Attorney and CPA Richard Hammar, senior editor of Church Law & Tax, will present a keynote address on key legal, tax, and risk management developments.
Date: September 24, 2020
Registration cost: To be determined
CPA firm Batts Morrison Wales & Lee covers recent developments and trends on legal, tax, and financial topics affecting nonprofit organizations and churches through an annual event. Due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, the firm is currently assessing ways to deliver this information to church and nonprofit leaders in 2020. More details will be shared soon. CPA Michael Batts, managing partner of the firm, is a senior editorial advisor for Church Law & Tax, and CPA Kaylyn Varnum, a partner at the firm, is an advisor-at-large for Church Law & Tax.
Date: To be determined
Location: To be determined
Registration cost: To be determined
The Christian Legal Society (CLS) is the largest national organization serving attorneys and law students who are Christians. The CLS conference provides training and encouragement to legal professionals, including those who serve churches, ministries, and nonprofits.
Attorney and CPA Richard Hammar, senior editor of Church Law & Tax, will present during the conference’s General Counsel Forum.
Dates: October 15-18, 2020
Location: Arlington, Virginia
Registration Cost: Early-bird rates for this conference are typically $600 for CLS members who are attorneys, $500 for CLS members who are not attorneys, and $125 for law students. Check the site for specific registration rates and early-bird deadlines as the event draws closer.
The Ultimate Financial and Legal Conference
This conference, cofounded by Frank and Elaine Sommerville (senior editorial advisors for Church Law & Tax), is designed to help church and ministry leaders transform their organizations internally with best practices in finance, law, human resources, and risk management.
Attorney and CPA Richard Hammar will present. Church Law & Tax will also attend.
Dates: October 26-27, 2020
Location: Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas
Registration Cost: To be determined