INTRODUCTION TO THE CHURCH AND OPERATIONAL FINANCIAL FUNCTIONS
In the modern world, there has been rapid and tremendous changes in our societies. This is majorly due to increased globalization and a fast growth in technology. There has been a need to accumulate assets in the mushrooming organizations. These changes have affected the manner in which things are done as well as the manner in which people behave. According to Iannaccone et al. (2018), a religious organization cannot survive, unless it obtains sufficient resources from the environment. This explains why Church congregations need places to meet and people to lead them. It also explains why church structures cost money to build and maintain such structures, and why outreach, evangelism, and community service demand time and money. In the same way, the activities of ministers, music directors, Sunday school teachers, and janitors never come free even when supplied by volunteers.
Considering this introductory note of the thesis, this chapter will therefore embark on the discussion of the above by providing the background of the research, the statement of the problem, and the significance of the research. The chapter will also provide the research questions and the objectives in addition to a brief overview of the methodological considerations. The chapter ends with a concise structure of subsequent chapters.
1.2. Background to the study
According to Larkin (2018,) pp.852-884), “Poverty appears contemptible, and sordid”. He further adds that “We are, indeed, very poor”. He explained, dignifying the twenty pounds he enclosed for the rebuilding of St. Paul’s Basilica in Rome, in one of the poorest area in Ireland and yet the claims were increasing. Seventy five years later, almost to the day, in 1900, his successor, Michael Cardinal Logue, cleared over thirty thousand pounds in a single bazaar for the purpose of decorating the interior of his cathedral, and could afford to send regularly every year some six hundred pounds in Peter’s pence to Rome. No wonder Wootton (2015) notes that alongside effective planning, a key to a successful appeal is developing a strong case for support. This is the compelling argument as to why anyone should support any appeal. After all, no one has to give to it and there are many competing causes out there; so one need to think through what makes the church project so important that anyone should support it. Larkin (2018) asserts that, when the nation is poor, the churches are also poor. This makes it difficult for the churches to raise funds for church halls construction leave alone the decorations that could be a ‘by the way’. Members of the church are the citizens of the nation they live in.
In line with poverty thinking by Larkin (2018), another researcher, Bruce, (2007) declares that many of the citizens who are church members settle for average, good, or even great results, and they miss out on the impact God could make in their lives. God’s plan always goes beyond great. This level of success is a realm that the world can mystically discuss, but without knowing God, one just dreams about reaching a plan that will really make a difference. A plan that will make a difference now and make a difference in eternity is a concept that is far beyond great. As this is not sufficient, Larkin (2008) embraces the fact that the economy in the circulation dictates how fast a church could raise funds for church capital growth. The main burden of meeting the Church’s early capital needs fall on that class of laity who are relatively wealthy: the merchants and farmers who make large sums of money. On this economic well-being the Church is able to build a new, though modest, establishment where hardly any had existed before.
However regarding church members’ contributions, Wootton (2015) warns that, care need to be taken when asking members to contribute towards a specific project as to whether their giving is restricted to this project or one part of the project or whether their giving can be used for general church use.This is to say that, contribution and determination to participate in various church developments depends on one self. Larkin (2018), the anomaly of a church that appeared to be growing ever wealthier in a seemingly stagnant and chronically depressed economy raises a further question: what effect did the acquisition by the Church of a considerable amount of property over a relatively short period of time had on capital investment and economic growth? This leaves many questions regarding the management of church resources and questions regarding the origin of the sources that are so easily acquired.
The stabilization and structural adjustments measures adopted in the African countries have led to reduction in government involvement in social services delivery. The expectation is that, private enterprise and personal expenditure will make up the difference. According to Iannaccone et al. (2018), surplus funds permit a church to hire additional staff to design and direct programs of outreach that meet the social, physical, and spiritual needs of potential new members. Assets used to expand and improve meeting facilities can help attract and accommodate additional members. Donations of members’ time prove no less important than donations of money.
People are naturally drawn to churches with an energetic membership ready to help with potlucks, teach Sunday school classes, serve on committees, organize worship services, sing in the choir, assist in soup kitchens and community outreach, and help other members with special needs. Dahoom (2016) posits that, the ability of the church to carry on its mission is increasingly dependent on laity. Priests and religious are discerning that they can best use their time and training by facilitating in laity sense of church and commitment to ministry. They see that giving spiritual direction to the laity is more important than administering buildings and finance.
In addition, Dahoom (2016) suggests that leadership training and religious education for laity need to take precedence over attempts to build community through activities as fundraising events. A deep-seated attitude equating laity with the purely secular has often limited lay ministry to areas of management and finance, with the result that both laity and clergy are frustrated at the lack of spiritual and religious content in such ministry. In addition, lack of sufficiency would not act as a defense and this the main reason, Bruce (2007), advice that if one chooses a life of poverty, it is an insult to God. His highest creation, for which Christ died, was never intended to live on a level that is not dignified. One may come to this situation by being lazy, wasteful, slothful, or foolish. However Dahoom (2016), is of the view that there is the problem of finance. The budget cut-backs of recent years have led parishes and dioceses to lay off excellent lay ministers. Meaning, spiritual matters are more emphasized than the accumulation, and the handling of funds, for the purpose of capital growth in churches.
1.3. Statement of the Problem
Capital Growth occur if there are surplus resources for investments and development purposes, and according to Standard and Poor’s Corporation (2015), such resources include time, personal efforts, and money. This is possible if these are beyond the minimum required to maintain current operations, to compensate for depreciation in physical facilities and in membership lost to death or departure. This leaves an answered question, relating to the ways used by the Pentecostal churches to raise funds. This is true because, hardly would Pentecostal Churches explain explicitly the best means of raising funds, and thus, Mason (2009), notes that administration of church finances is a sacred trust. It is hard to tell which of the three most employed methods of funds soliciting is most applicable; Fundraising, Donations and Contributions.
Tanui et al. (2016) notes that, churches are in dire need of funds to run the day to day operations. The means of church funding are not spoken about in Churches rather, these activities are carried out mere proceedings in the Pentecostal churches. The problem lies unsettled on who then funds the Pentecostal Churches Capital growth and is this best practiced through fundraising, donations or contributions.
Wootton (2015) notes that major appeals do not happen by themselves. Fundraisings, contributions and donations must be called for. Most poor churches pretend that lack of information about donors is a good thing for its leaders. They set up policies that no Pastors shall know what persons give, making it impossible for a Pastor to say thank you to a donor for a major gift, as if being thanked is not helpful or polite. Cliff (2016) exerts that church after church, Pastors ask singers to join the choir, parents to help in the youth program, those who have recreational skills to coach teams and people with mission hearts to lead mission teams but hardly would Pastors spend time with those who are blessed financially and asking them to share those blessings with the church. This is kind of donations in churches should not be allowed neither are individuals allowed to contribute voluntarily. However, Robertson (2016) says clearly that people want to hear why they should support the church financially. This calls for unity amongst the church members in order for sourcing of funds to be effective. Fundraising, contribution by the church members and donations either by the church members or well-wishers are not mentioned either.
From the above writers and researchers, none of them has established the methods of raising funds applied by the Pentecostal churches among others. The mention of the influence of the fundraisings, contributions by members and donations has on Capital Growth of the Pentecostal Churches have not been mentioned. From the above studies, a major research gap is realised, since the studies discussed were not done in Kikuyu Sub-county which is the main area where this study search will be carried. Further, the prior research were considering majorly the main stream churches but my study is focussing Pentecostal Churches, case of the full Gospel Churches of Kenya.
1.4. Research questions
i) How does Fundraisings fundraising influence Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya?
ii) What influence has Contributions on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya?
iii) How do Donations enhance Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya?
iv) What is the influence of Financial Operational Functions on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya?
1.5. Research aim and objectives
In order to answer the above questions, this research will have to achieve its main aim, which is to establish the influence of Financial Operational Functions on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya. This aim can only be achieved if the following objectives are met:
i) To establish the influence of fundraisers on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya in Kikuyu Sub-County
ii) To determine the enhancement of Donations on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya in Kikuyu Sub-County
iii) To evaluate the influence of Contributions on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya in Kikuyu Sub-County
iv) To analyse the influence of Financial Operational Functions on Church Capital Growth in the Full Gospel Churches of Kenya in Kikuyu Sub-County
1.6 Significance of the Study
1.6.1 The Society
The significance of this research study is to inform the society on the most effective way to raise funds. The study will tell the most effective and efficient means of soliciting funds and the related costs.
1.6.2 The academia
This research study will be a basis further research studies. The study will enhance the practice of the most effective funds collection method. Pentecostal churches will have one more recorded information to help them evaluate the methods available for funds collection and probably how to select the best among the methods available.
The study will handle different methods of funds collection. It will further evaluate them to tell which could be the most effective. Thus the most appropriate method would be employed by the Pentecostal Churches. This will be possible through publications, publication of books and publishing in journals and magazines. This will be an enrichment to the current studies done in this field.
Using the information from this research study, the community, in which the church belongs, will be able to raise funds at ease and thus encourage capital growth in the society. Alternatively, this research study will evaluate the methods available and hence will discourage the least effective methods of funds soliciting.
1.7. Overview of the Research Methodology
This research study will be carried out in Kikuyu Sub County in Kiambu County, Kenya. I will use the Church branches of The Full Gospel Churches of Kenya in the Kikuyu Sub County. These branches will be taken as strata for the purpose of this study. In each church, the researcher will purposively choose the Pastor in charge, The Chairman/lady: Church Development, Men fellowship, Women fellowship, and Youth fellowship as the respondents. To collect the data, questionnaires and interview will be used. That is to say, this study will be both qualitative and quantitative. Also, a mixed analytical method will be applied to analyse the data seeing that this will be collected following both the quantitative and qualitative approaches. An extensive and detailed account of the proposed methodological approaches will be provided in chapter 3 of this research proposal.
1.8. Conceptualisation and Definition of Key Terms
The Church is the assembly of the faithful. It is a community, it is the sacrament of communion, communion of love. The visible is purely human reality; the invisible church is a reality of “pure” grace (Miller, 2014). In this study, this term refers to a congregation of believers in a Pentecostal churches namely, The Full Gospel Churches of Kenya, in Kikuyu Sub County. This research study recognizes a church branch a congregation meeting to raise funds for capital growth in their churches.
1.8.2. Capital growth
According to Tyagi (2017), the term Capital Growth is the increase in value of an asset or investment over time. It is measured on the basis of the current value of the asset or investment, in relation to the amount originally invested in it. According to this research study, Capital growth is the increase of Assets from one level to another in one year to another. The increase is measured in Kenya shillings
1.8.3. Financial Operational Functions
Ramos et al. (2016), affirms that financial operational functions are an arrangement so as to facilitate the analysis of each function (independently of the other functions), and attempts to answer the financial matters in question. These are the activities applied by the Church in order to raise funds to aid in capital growth.
1.9. Structure of the Thesis Proposal
This thesis proposal will be organized in three chapters:
Chapter one: This chapter is an introduction of the research proposal. It encompasses the background of the study, statement of the problem, objectives of the study and the research questions. It will include justification and scope of the study, limitations and delimitations of the same.
Chapter two: This chapter covers the literature review, theoretical and conceptual framework. This chapter will entail information related to prior studies on financial operational functions and capital growth in Pentecostal Churches. A theory related to the research topic will be discussed clearly showing, who came up with the theory, concept of the theory and its application in the research study. This chapter will affirm the research gaps available and how I intend to carry on with the research study. A conceptual framework will be developed and this will guide the research study development.
Chapter three: This chapter contains a detailed description of the design of the study. These are covered to show research design adopted, population to be studied, samples selected and the manner in which the sampling is conducted. This chapter will disclose the types of data used, data collection methods and procedures, the instruments applied for data collection, data analysis and ethical considerations.
Finally, this research proposal will have appendices including, the research instruments, the work plan, the proposed budget , and maps where applicable.