Last Sunday, the KSC audit team finalized the audit review for ESC 2020 financial report. Thus, it concluded our first yearly financial reporting responsibility as an independent congregation. We will conduct the audit earlier next year to present the review in the annual congregation meeting.
As I shared before, we didn’t pursue financial autonomy for the sake of more freedom. We believed that increased responsibility would generate increased participation and a sense of ownership from our members, which is a significant growth sign. And I think it did. We had a sizable surplus of the budget in 2020. One reason is that our expenses were reduced because many events were cancelled. But the main reason is that our members gave far more than we anticipated. Not only in the area of finance but also our members were generous with their time. Many events were held online, which required much creative thinking and collaboration (sometimes more than an in-person event).
Our finance leader shared that the audit meeting went well, and other than a few minor recommendations, auditors commended us for managing our finances well. The audit notes they gave were informative and will strengthen our financial integrity further.
As we are just beginning to manage our finance, most giving will continue to be used for operational costs and salaries for staff for the next few years, which is perfectly normal. But our leadership team has already started thinking and praying about how we can use the fund to further the mission and benefit our community. I believe in the near future, we will not only be fully financially autonomous but have a more precise direction in how we can impact people outside our church following the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-19) and the Great Commandment (Matthew 22:36-40) of Jesus.
Jesus said it is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20:35). I am deeply proud and grateful that we are making a small but the right step in becoming a giving church.