Members for Church Accountability Inc.
First Quarter 2003
Section 1 - Financial Report
Summary financial statement for fourth quarter 2002:
For any of you that would like to contact us by e-mail our address is: firstname.lastname@example.org. We get the usual flood of unsolicited e-mail at this address, so it would be well to title your letter in a way that will make it distinguishable from the junk. Our web site address is now: http://www.advmca.org. Again we would like to encourage MCA members to read this web site and to invite their friends to read it. If you don't have access to the web, perhaps you could ask a friend who does, to let you read it. We are NOT asking that our members get our newsletter from the web rather than regular mail. It is still better for us to send our newsletter to our members by regular mail since so many do not have e-mail, however, this web site is an economical means of spreading the word about MCA to prospective members. Mass mailings to prospective members are quite expensive by comparison. Information about a web site can spread quickly on the Internet. If each person mails the site address with their recommendation to several friends, and they in turn tell others, the word is soon passed to a large number.
We encourage members to notify us when their address changes. We do appreciate those of you who have sent us your change of address. When you move and don't notify us we are not able to continue sending you the newsletter. Your newsletter, of course, is still sent to the old address and is then discarded. We know nothing about your address change until we do a first class mailing (required every so often by the PO for bulk mailings). At that time we either get your newsletter back with your current address or if the "PO forwarding order" has expired, it is sent back with no current address. We then have to remove your name from our mailing list.
The 2002 tax return was filed this quarter. Just to mention it again, we have the help of the accounting firm Gordon Hughes and Banks in filing this return.
We are still hopping to start the research project soon.
Section 3- Member Letters
This section is for printing the letters that members send in. It provides the means for members to communicate with one another. It is also one way that representative/agents can communicate with those in their group. Needless to say, these letters do not speak for the MCA organization itself. So far as time and budget allow, we intend to print all letters from members which appear to be written for inclusion in the newsletter (please say so if you do not wish your letter to be printed). We will print the shortest letters first. Where it seems appropriate, the editor will make comments in response to letters.
Malcolm Dwyer writes: I was talking with a Conf. worker about three months ago, and this is what he said about working for the Denomination:" If you do what they want you to do you will always have a job, but if you go against them, they will find a way to get rid of you". Right or wrong doesn't make any difference. In Brother Dennis's case, I think it should be obvious that he was unfairly dealt with, but they went to court and by hook or by crook, the court ruled in the GC's favor. The only thing Brother Dennis could hope for would be a large ground swell of favorable opinion, that would pressure the Brethren to reconsider his situation, but I don't see that happening. The only thing the Brethren understand, is to have the funds dry up. If people would be selective in their giving on a large scale it would make a difference, but I don't see that happening either. Brother Dennis isn't the only one that the Brethren have forced to the wall, read about what they did to M.L. Andreasen. The reason nobody in Conf employment try's to do anything about conditions is because they know the same thing will happen to them. It looks like Brother Dennis needs to put this behind him, and go forward from here.
EDITORIAL COMMENT: I believe that Mr. Dennis is going on with his life. However, after about 35 years of service to the SDA church and then being fired, I find it quite understandable that Mr. Dennis would have a continuing interest in what happens to the church.
Lloyd D Wenzel writes: It has become obvious to me after reading about David Dennis in the last 4 newsletters that he has a spirit that has no place in our organized church work. The tone of his attacks makes that plain to me. Please remove my name from your mailing list.
EDITORIAL COMMENT: We will, of course, honor your request. I would point out that it is only in the last newsletter that we have recently attempted to provide a review and status of the case of Mr. Dennis. We would not like readers to have the missimpression that this case is the only concern we have about the conduct of the church. It is true that his case is mentioned in many newsletters mostly in letters that members write in. We do not control the topics these writers choose to address. We do not, however, apologize for recalling the case of Mr. Dennis, since it and the GC's continuing refusal to provide an adequate accounting of these events, are perhaps some of the clearest evidences that something is wrong about the way the GC is doing business.
Priscilla McNeily writes (in part): I am responding to a comment by David Dennis on page 9 at the bottom of the page (2002 4th quarter) where he states he was denied his retirement benefits. I remember some years ago, perhaps in the early or mid 80's about reading in the Review that (and I don't remember the name of the person) had been denied their retirement benefits and as I read this I said out loud to myself, "they" can't do this, it's unlawful. Then, in the next Review I received, it was admitted they made a mistake in saying this and they were wrong for they could not withhold retirement benefits. Wish I had kept both Reviews. I agree with D. Dennis about all the [wrongdoing in our church]. It's disgusting they aren't disciplined. I suppose these [wrongdoers] will get their retirement benefits.
Thank you for what you are doing. Most of our people think pastors and leadership can do no wrong morally or theologically.
A writer who we won't identify writes (in part): You are looking for justice and accountability. But all churches, all religions are like governments, the IRS, the CIA, FBI et al, who are not accountable to any. For this reason we have to wait until the plague of hail...
EDITORIAL COMMENT: There may be an element of truth in what you say, however, church members do have at least a nominal voice in the church. The great problem is that so few seem to care what is happening.
EDITORIAL COMMENT ON SOME LETTERS NOT PRINTED: This quarter, as is often the case, we received letters relating cases of sexual misconduct on the part of church employees and lack of fair treatment of the victims. We have not printed these letters. While such matters are certainly a serious concern, they are outside the limited scope of what MCA is about. Also, I might mention again why we often print only part of a letter. We do not usually reprint lengthy EGW quotes or lengthy scriptural quotations. We hesitate to print parts of letters that are extremely caustic or that are extreme blanket denunciations.
This quarter we received another letter that we are not reprinting. We hate to not print a letter just because the editor might not agree with everything the writer says. We want to provide a forum for differing views. However, we don't think that we need provide a forum for every possible view. This letters clearly advocates cutting all contributions to the SDA church and indeed the complete abandonment of the organization. This is not an alternative approach to a common goal; it is contrary to the general objectives of MCA. We respect this writer's view, but disagree to the point of not reprinting the letter.
We include the following blank for use in recruiting new members:
MEMBERS for CHURCH ACCOUNTABILITY, INC. (MCA) APPLICATION (nl1Q03)
/_/ I wish to be a member of the Southern California Chapter
You will receive the MCA newsletter.
Send to: Members for Church Accountability, Inc.