Board Summary Letter

Alliance Family News


Dear Co-Laborer for Christ,

The Board of Directors of The Christian and Missionary Alliance met at Salem (Ore.) Alliance Church on October 28–29, 2015. A sweet spirit of prayer permeated the Board meeting from beginning to end. The Board reviewed numerous reports and acted on certain recommendations. The following summarizes the Board proceedings to the extent allowed by the duties of confidentiality owed on various issues.

For several years the Board has scheduled the October meeting at a venue other than the National Office, which has allowed Board members to visit and experience Alliance ministry in diverse settings. The Board is grateful for Rev. Stephen D. Fowler’s invitation and efforts in offering us the church’s hospitality. Experience confirms that such a reception is only achieved through the concerted actions of many staff members, to whom we also express our appreciation. Our time at Salem Alliance Church, though brief, was uplifting and the tour of the facilities encouraged Board members to continue trusting and expecting God to do His work through the C&MA. More inspiring than the facilities were the church members who worked hard to make our stay comfortable, along with others we met or observed during our stay. A prayer gathering held on Wednesday evening was live-streamed to the Alliance community at 808 locations in 14 countries and 272 cities in the United States. There was a shared perception that God desires to act powerfully in and through our denomination.

On Tuesday evening President John Stumbo met with new Board members to share salient points of Board “life” over the past two years and to hear new Board members’ thoughts and expectations for the future.

The Board heard reports from The Christian and Missionary Alliance Foundation (d/b/a Shell Point Retirement Community); The Alliance Community for Retirement Living, Inc.; Town and Country Manor; Chapel Pointe at Carlisle; CAMA Services; and the Alliance Development Fund. Elections were held to fill vacant board positions for two of the retirement centers as well as CAMA Services.

The Audit Review Committee reported on their review of financial statements for fiscal year 2014–2015 and operational aspects of various Alliance programs as well as supporting organizations. The audits expressed no reservations as to the financial statements of these institutions. Various issues were discussed, and several recommendations were acted on.

The Board received and adopted reports from its Executive Committee, Committee on Church Ministries, Committee on Operations/Finance, Committee on Development, Committee on International Ministries, and Compensation Committee. The major topics of discussion were as follows:

Executive Committee:

  • Staying on Mission: A Guideline for How Alliance Churches Respond to Obergefell v. Hodges document, which was prepared and distributed to every licensed worker, church, camp, and school in The Alliance, was discussed. Response to the document has been positive. The Board commended both Gary D. Friesen and Daniel R. Wetzel for their contribution to this effort.
  • The district superintendents have been tasked with developing a strategic plan for mission engagement. The Board continues to give top priority to its stewardship of the Great Commission Fund and to the involvement of all churches and members in this joint effort to accomplish the task entrusted to us.

Committee on Church Ministries (Vice President Daniel R. Wetzel):

  • The Board was informed of the Fresh Start initiative undertaken in seven congregations: five completed and two in progress. We are hopeful that this will be successful in revitalizing some of our congregations.
  • The five-year plan for church multiplication prepared by David A. Reynolds, national team leader for Church Multiplication, at the request of Dan Wetzel and Assistant Vice President for Church Ministries Rosilio Román, was reviewed and found to be effective moving forward. The charts and projections were helpful in communicating the vision for future ministry.
  • After much thoughtful prayer following the resignation of the national youth director, Church Ministries is now positioned to staff the Youth Office and move this ministry forward.

Committee on Operations/Finance (Vice President Kenneth E. Baldes):

  • Significant losses have been incurred by the health plan in 2015 necessitating significant changes for 2016. The Board remains optimistic after receiving a detailed report on the necessary changes being implemented to ensure that the plan remains both beneficial to its participants as well as financially sustainable. The benefit of the health plan to the C&MA is not only the medical coverage provided by the plan but also the opportunity to provide coverage in ways that are consistent with our core beliefs.
  • The “clean” audits and healthy financial situation of supporting organizations was cause for celebration.
  • The Chapel Pointe at Carlisle renovations are finished and have allowed improved care to be provided to residents.

Committee on Development (Vice President Dennis K. Whalen):

  • There has been a 2.5 percent increase in Alliance Life subscriptions, which reflects the continued satisfaction of subscribers with quality and content of the publication.
  • The $938,000 in Great Commission Day Offerings was cause for celebration. At the same time, the fact that only about one third of churches participated in the offering suggests that we can still improve significantly on this amount.
  • Dennis Whalen’s team, and particularly Douglas B. Wicks, obtained $1,200,000 in grants for the Gabon and Mali hospitals from the U.S. Agency for International Development. We hope for similar success in such efforts in the future. God continues to provide different ways to fund our ministries.

Committee on International Ministries (Vice President Timothy D. Crouch):

  • There was considerable discussion on the appointment of international workers submitted for the Board’s consideration. The Board voted to approve 17 new appointments to 10 ministries.

Compensation Committee:

  • Various issues regarding employee compensation were discussed, including bonus payments and additional days off as alternatives to salary increases.

Our president thanked all vice presidents and General Counsel Gary Friesen for their excellent work. Ken Baldes’s 10th anniversary was recognized for serving our Lord faithfully at the National Office.

As a closing activity, the president grouped Board members to consider the following questions and then share the group’s thoughts with the entire Board:

  1. How well have the “Christ-centered, Acts 1:8 Family” and “Love, Proclaim, Reach, Launch” themes been received?
  2. How can we improve the allocation of the Great Commission Fund?
  3. What questions should we be asking our youth in order to learn from their experience in the C&MA?
  4. How are you sensing God moving within the C&MA?
  5. What can we learn from Council 2015 in preparation for Council 2017?
  6. What topics should be on the agenda with our affiliated or subsidiary educational institutions?

The meeting closed with a discussion of the manifestations of different types of power, both worldly and spiritual, based on a reading of Acts 16. The Board shared a particularly deep time of prayer and then adjourned.

Steven C. Lausell
Corporate Secretary

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