Wednesday, April 18, 2007

How do we square these statements?

Statement 1:
I am the President of ACI. I was the President of SEAD. ... I am aware of our actual work at ACI, and 90% at least goes by my eyes, and it is work that happens out of the generosity of those contributing. No stipends are paid, and this costs Grace Church nothing in the strict sense. We have a web site, and that is paid for by Grace Church, as I understand it. [link]
When at SEAD I planned and ran over 15 conferences and 3 House of Studies. We kept a tight financial ship and of course ‘made no profit’ — we were a not for profit organisation. But we succeeded admirably, to my mind. The problem was how to keep up that kind of pace, without any donor base beyond a few kind and generous Bishops. [link]
Someone once put it nicely, 'six guys and a web-site.' We counted on donations to support travel and subsistence, and this was handled by the Executive Director. [link]

- The Rev. Prof. Chris Seitz, President of the Anglican Communion Institute

Statement 2 [link]:
AI and ACI are both ministries of the parish but are managed with separate accounts that are audited annually with the rest of the parish ministries.

ACI/AI are funded by private donations–and all money raised for these ministries is always spent specifically for the purposes for which it was raised. None of this has been for salaries, but for conferences and publishing, in most recent years for the sort of work Chris Seitz has described.

Since 2003 until just this past Fall, Grace Church has funded the ACI from its own monies to maintain its independence and so that it would be free from political pressures that outside fund raising naturally involves.

No money disappeared into these ministries, but was used for the purposes it was intended.

The ACI/AI has [sic? have?] granted scholarships for a number of theological and educational ventures over the years, but those funds are separate from the working money given for ACI. In other words I raised money specifically for the purpose of supporting these other various educational ventures–which included clergy and lay continuing education, seminary education expenses for third world students, writing projects and the like.

-The Rev. Donald Armstrong, Rector, Grace Church and St. Stephens, and Executive Director, ACI

Statement 3 [link]:
They just walked away from 85 percent of their funding.... I don’t know what ACI is without that.

- Alan Crippen, spokesman for Grace and Armstrong, President John Jay Institute for Faith, Society and Law Colorado Springs, Colorado

Very often an organization's Board does much of its fund raising. I would be interested in knowing if the friendly bishops on the Board of Directors of the ACI used monies from their diocesan discretionary funds to support ACI. And if they asked for audits of how donations to ACI were used.

The ACI said in its statement severing ties to Grace:
ACI is not now and was never incorporated. Its “board” has been a loosely-knit network of sympathetic consultants within our work on behalf of the Communion. There was and is no budget, no compensation, and no formal structure.
Not sure why "board" is in quotes. The "Board of Directors" are prominently listed on the ACI website:
Board Members

The Most Rev'd Dr George Carey (former Archbishop of Canterbury)
The Most Rev'd Drexel Wellington Gomez (Archbishop of the West Indies )
The Rt Rev'd John W. Howe (Episcopal Bishop of Central Florida)
The Rt Rev'd Alpha Mohamed (Bishop of the Rift Valley)
The Rt Rev'd Edward L. Salmon, Jr (Bishop of South Carolina)
The Rt Rev'd James M. Stanton (Bishop of Dallas)
The Very Rev'd Dr Paul Zahl (Dean of Trinity School For Ministry)
The Rev'd Dr George Sumner (Dean of Wycliffe Seminary in Toronto)
Professor Russell Reno (Creighton University)
Mrs Elizabeth Cooper (Charleston. SC)

UPDATE. Don Armstrong says more about ACI's funding:
... the vestry did not want to leave dangling $170,000 that had been spent by ACI since 2003 and thus categorized it as a loan–when in fact by resolution in 2003 the vestry had previously decided to fund ACI with money restricted from the diocese by parishioners–and by the Diocese’s own determination had to be used beyond the parish. So ACI owes the parish nothing. All ACI funds were spent for flying the ACI team literally around the world ....

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