Financial Services provides finance and accounting services that support WELS ministries and safeguard the assets that God has provided. These services include financial planning and analysis, financial statement preparation and audit coordination, transaction processing, payroll services, insurance and risk management, cash and investment management, and legal-related services.
“WELS is financially strong,” notes Mr. Kyle Egan, WELS’ chief financial officer, “as God continues to provide the financial gifts needed to grow funding levels, which allows for expanded mission and ministry initiatives.”
Congregation Mission Offerings (CMO) are critical to WELS’ financial position as they fund approximately 70 percent of WELS’ operating budget every year. WELS finished fiscal year 2022 (year ended June 30, 2022) with CMO of $23.1 million, which was $0.5 million higher than the previous year and the first time CMO exceeded $23.0 million. WELS is thankful for the continued generosity of its people in supporting ministry efforts.
Other critical components to WELS’ financial position are strong reserves, including the Financial Stabilization Fund, which is utilized every year to support approximately 30 percent of WELS’ operating budget. The balance of the Financial Stabilization Fund increased during fiscal year 2022 due to higher than planned levels of CMO and overall operating expense underspending. The Financial Stabilization Fund is not an emergency or contingency fund. Rather, it holds all undesignated non-CMO funding sources (gifts, grants, bequests, investment income, and other support) to assist in supporting the annual operating expenses of the synod. WELS is blessed to have this stability in managing the operating budget year to year while allowing for the regular expansion of mission and ministry.
During the summer of 2022, the collaborative process of developing the synod’s ministry financial plan (budget) for the next two fiscal years began among the areas of ministry, ministerial education schools, synod leadership, and the Synodical Council. The ministry financial plan will be finalized at the July 2023 synod convention.