Ministry Plan Overview

What is a church ministry plan and why do we have one?

Like any budget you may use at home or in your business, it is a guide and plan for spending. Typically in church settings, each ministry area creates their budget. We start early and plan for the upcoming year with what ministries we want to take place. We then fund that plan with dollars, thus the ministry plan.  Once adopted, each minister has a guide and plan to follow and track so that spending is in control. Obviously, things change along the way and new directions are focused but still the ministry plan is our best guide to keep us moving forward.

Is our ministry plan from January to December?

No. We use a fiscal year rather than a calendar year. Our budget starts September 1 and ends August 31. With December being the largest giving month, with the fiscal year it places that month in the middle of our ministry plan and allows us to better allocate income and spending for the whole year. In a church setting and using the calendar year, December is the last month of your year and that can make it difficult to plan.

Who creates the ministry plan and monitors it?

There are many groups and people that create the ministry plan. Each minister is responsible for their area and includes committees and lay persons to assist them in their planning. By the time you add up all the departments there may be close to a hundred people involved in the process. Once compiled, the ministry plan gets reviewed by the Deacons of the church, the staff, the Finance Committee, and then to the church for adoption.

Are audits done at Columbus Avenue?

That is a great question to ask. Yes! We use the services of an outside independent accounting firm to look at our books annually. There are actually three levels of financial accountability; audits, reviews, and compilations. An audit s a full blown look at all aspects of the financial operation of the church and will take longer and cost more than the others. A review is slightly less of a look and does not dig as deep as an audit and costs less. A compilation is a brief overview and look of accounting practices. At Columbus we have many full audits under our belt and many reviews and one compilation. At the direction of the Finance Committee, we choose each year the level that is needed. As a member of Columbus, you can rest assured we desire the best accountability practice and using an independent accounting firm ensures we achieve that. 

Can I see the ministry plan?            

Absolutely!  A ministry plan is reviewed by the Finance Committee each month and presented to the church in summary format every other month at our monthly Business Conference on the third Sunday nights of the scheduled month.

The 2022/2023 Proposed Ministry Plan is ready. As always, we offer you two options to view. Option 1 is the Ministry Plan Flyer which summarizes the ministry plan. This option will be available in print.  Option 2 is a more detailed report of all line items in the ministry plan. This option is available in the church office or online.