Sound Principles Govern Church Finances

“Sound Principles Govern Church Finances,” Ensign, July 2018

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Sound Principles Govern Church Finances

Presiding Bishop says simple, clear principles direct Church finances.

Bishop Causee speaks about Church Finances

Presiding Bishop Gérald Caussé affirms that providence and principles of self-reliance define and direct the Church’s finances. Photo by Spenser Heaps, Deseret News.

“We rejoice in the fact that the Church has achieved complete financial independence and is able to accomplish its mission without any type of debt,” Presiding Bishop Gérald Caussé said in an article published in the July 2018 Ensign.

In the article, titled “The Spiritual Foundations of Church Financial Self-Reliance,” Bishop Caussé explained that the Church’s policies of financial management are guided by two simple and clear principles: (1) “total expenditures will not exceed forecasted revenue,” and (2) “the budget for operating expenses will not increase year to year at a more rapid rate than the anticipated growth in tithing contributions.”

Bishop Caussé also affirmed that providence and principles of self-reliance define and direct the Church’s finances, which follow four guiding temporal principles:

  • The law of tithing, which promises blessings both spiritual and temporal.

  • Self-reliance and independence. “Just as wise budgeting at home enables individual members and families to maintain independence, prudent financial management is key to the Church’s ability to act independently,” Bishop Caussé said.

  • Provident living. Temporal preparation is applied at the general Church level.

  • Providing for the Saints in the Lord’s own way. The Church’s finances are managed and directed in the spirit of prayer and through constant revelation.

Bishop Caussé also quoted President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008), who said that “the only real wealth of the Church is in the faith of its people.” The Church is, after all, defined by individual members bound together by common beliefs and covenants. “They are its strength and its future,” Bishop Caussé concluded.