Presented to Venture By Austin Rammell – Lead Pastor, Venture

From The Pastors and Trustees of Venture

March 19, 2019

Venture Church operates on an April 1st fiscal year meaning every April 1st we begin a new budget cycle.  To plan our budget, we go through an annual strategic planning process we call OGAP (Objectives, Goals and Action Plans).  The process is designed to make sure ALL we do is highly impacting the mission of the church and that the budget exclusively and effectively resources our strategic plan.

There are five Core Values that drive our process.

  • Sound Doctrine – We must remain under the authority of God’s Word and as such be uncompromising in our understanding of the central doctrines of the Christian Faith (The Trinity, The Bible, Salvation by Grace through Faith, Spiritual maturity by Grace through Faith and The Church as movement to change the world with the Gospel!).
  • Gospel Community – The church must function as a big huge constantly expanding family that is loving and supporting each other in life and the cause Christ!
  • Biblical Discipleship – We are called to teach, challenge and inspire each other with the Word of God so that we love God more than anything and thus obey the leadership of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
  • Personal Evangelism – Biblically each individual follower of Christ is called to engage the people in their sphere of influence with the Gospel.  We are all His witnesses!
  • Great Commission Missions – Every believer is commissioned to move the Gospel outside of their “people group” … their natural sphere of influence.  Therefore, we each must intentionally extend our relationships (and thus the Gospel!) outside of our “tribe”. It also calls the local church to participate in the Global cause of Christ to lead people from every tribe and tongue to know Him!

These Core Values (especially the Great Commission in Matthew 28:16-20) are what drive everything that we do.  They define our local church and thus our mission statement, objectives, goals, action plans and budget.

Venture’s Mission Statement

“Engage those far from God with the Gospel of Jesus Christ to know and follow and Him.”

Out of our mission statement we form Objectives and Goals to point us to what we need to be doing (Action Plans).  Our goals are measurable markers that help us see the actual level of effectiveness our action plans are having.

Venture’s Ministry Objectives & Goals

GATHER! – Gather the church together in mass gatherings and small groups that teach, equip and inspire the body in a way that engages the world far from God with the Gospel of Jesus Christ to know and follow Him!

  • Annually increase worship attendance by 20%.
  • Annually increase the number of volunteers by 10%.
  • Within 5 years increase the small group attendance to match the average weekly Sunday AM worship attendance.

SCATTER! – Scatter the Body into a world far from God to engage people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ to know and follow Him!

  • Annually increase baptisms by 20%.
  • Within 5 years grow the Sunday AM church attendance to match the economic and racial diversity within a 5 mile radius of The Hub (our building).
  • Within 10 years plant a church in an unreached people group outside the United States.

2019-2020 Budget

After establishing these Objectives and Goals the Pastors then pray and work through action plans to achieve them and a budget to resource those plans.  In order to wisely manage our cash flow and create opportunities for increasing the effectiveness of our ministry in the future, we limit our budget to 97.7% of the previous year’s total offering.    This percentage is based on data produced by organizations who study church finances.

Below is a detailed summary of our proposed budget for fiscal year 2019-20.  

Total Annual Budget – $790,233.30 ($15,196.79 weekly need)

This breaks down into three main areas of expenses:

Personnel Budget – $352,820.30

Full Time Employees (Lead Pastor, Associate Pastor of Administration, Associate Pastor of Discipleship, Maintenance Director, Administrative Assistant), Part Time Employees (Children’s Ministry Coordinator, Student Ministry Coordinator) and the government mandated expenses to employ people (Workers Compensation Insurance, Employment Taxes, etc.).

Note:  All staff salaries are determined by our volunteer Pastors and our Trustees (all of which are non-paid).   They use the annual Southern Baptist Compensation Study available online as a guide to make sure our staff is being paid the average amount of compensation provided to staff members serving in similar roles in similar size churches in the southeastern part of the United States.

Note 2:  We were previously planning to hire a full time Children’s Pastor in our new budget, however, since making that announcement, the pastors have felt led in a different direction.  Details are below.

Administrative Budget – $283,013.00

Mortgage ($192,188.00 annually), Building Maintenance, Building and Ministry Liability Insurance, I.T. Expenses, Office Supplies, Church Bus Expenses (Maintenance, Fuel and Insurance), Water, Electricity, Gas, Telephone, Internet, Office Supplies, Postage, Banking and Transaction Fees.

Program Budget – $154,400

Missions Giving (International Church Planting, Christian Lighthouse Ministry in India, etc.), Middle School and High School Ministry Programing and Resources (Wed Nights, Summer Events, Camps, Retreats, etc.), Children’s Ministry Programing and Resources (Sunday AM resources, camp, events, etc.), Worship Ministry Expenses (Contract Employees, Licensing, Equipment, etc.), AVL Expenses (Equipment, Contract Employees, Livestream Expenses, etc.), Graphics and Media Development, Website and Social Media Development/Management, Marketing, Outreach Events (i.e. Easter, Trunk or Treat, Christmas, etc.), Women’s Ministry Events, Life Group Training and Resources, Church Wide Training Events (Leadership Summits, etc.).

Staff Changes

In January we announced that we planned to hire a Full Time Children’s Pastor.  However, after receiving a great deal of resumes we began to sense the Lord leading us in a different direction.  We have been researching a revised approach and believe this approach to be the best use of our resources to facilitate our mission, objectives, goals and action plans.

Here’s the plan:

Hire a part-time Children’s Ministry Coordinator

Lead a team of volunteers that provide high-energy, super-awesome, Sunday AM children’s gatherings that teach children the Word of God and inspire them on the worthiness of living their lives loving and obeying Jesus!  In addition, this coordinator will help scatter Venture into volunteer opportunities with the Boy’s and Girls Club (We donate our building to the Dallas club throughout the week) as well as other opportunities in our community to reach children and families (i.e. our partnership with Stanley football).  As Venture grows we will add part time coordinators (i.e. the next hire would likely split leadership of the Nursery and Pre-School from our Elementary program … one part-time coordinator for each). This is a scalable model that growing churches all over the country are moving towards. It is enabling growing churches to stay highly effective at gathering and scattering the body.  At the end of the day we believe the best way to truly impact a child is through their parents. Therefore, we want to build a ministry that a kid can’t wait to drag their parents to on Sunday, which gives us a chance to reach their parents!

Hire a part time Student Ministry Coordinator

Currently our Associate Pastor of Administration (Chris Mintz) is also our student pastor. However, just like everything in Venture, the student ministry is growing, and he needs help!  Stereotypically, the older a teenager gets the less influence they allow their parents to have and thus the more we need to equip adults that love Jesus to influence them! In addition, we are learning that the most effective student ministries in the country are splitting their focus on Middle Schoolers and High Schoolers.  Chris will continue to be very hands on in his leadership of the Student Ministry but with the help of a Part-Time Student Ministry Coordinator he can begin to work more at splitting the focus of our ministry between High School and Middle School. In the future we fully anticipate this needing full time staff that are exclusively focused on leading this area of our ministry.

Change our part time Finance Coordinator into a Full Time Administrative Assistant to the Lead Pastor

Support his ministry, the administrative needs of other staff and handles the books for the Trustees.  The church has grown to the place that we need a finance person and a full-time administrative assistant, however, we can only afford one person. Therefore, we are expanding the current part-time position into a full-time position.  As the church grows, we will eventually need a full-time finance person but for now we can only financially justify one position. We have formally offered this new position to our current part-time finance coordinator. She has faithfully served this church for a long time.  If she chooses to not accept this position, we will announce the opportunity to the church and begin accepting resumes.

Future Building!

We are running out of space!!!!!!!!!!!!  We are working with our architect to redo our master plan.  We are anticipating that he is going to recommend the next phase of construction to be the addition of a multi-use building that can serve as a gym for the Boys and Girls Club throughout the week (as well as other obvious outreach opportunities) and be converted into a cutting edge modern worship space for Sunday AM.  The master plan is also going to be adjusted to accommodate the expanded office space, meeting rooms for classes, children’s ministry space, etc. that will be required for Venture to house a local church ministry where 1,500 people (total adults and children) gather to worship on Sunday through multiple worship gatherings (we will never plan on a building big enough to try and do one worship gathering!).  How awesome is it that it looks like God is building a local church of that size and effectiveness that gathers to meet in Dallas, NC!!!

KEY – Our focus is to be the kind of church that needs that kind of building, so we are going to keep investing in staff and resources to make us look like a can of Pillsbury dough busting out all over the place in so many places that we have to build!  We are also going to continue increasing our debt payment and working to grow our budget. Some of our Pastors and Trustees are working hard to get all the facts together on what we need to build and what it’s going to take to build it. We are looking forward to presenting it to the church when we have it all together.  However, at the end of the day there is no doubt that our budget is going to have to significantly increase in order to pay for and resource the building we will need in the future … SO!!!!! …

Conclusion

We will vote on the proposed budget the last Sunday in March.

If you’ve been around Venture long you know the vote will be a celebration that will only take a few seconds.  The unity in this church is awesome!!!! HOWEVER, the real “vote” on our budget is not what will happen the last Sunday of the month … it’s what will happen each time each of us gets a pay check.  My family believes the Bible teaches us to tithe (give 10% to your local church) and we have been doing this for a long time. In addition to the 10% we give Venture we also budget another 5% of our income to give to other non-profits and opportunities to that we believe make an impact in lives.  

As your Pastor and friend I challenge you to take giving seriously.  Christ gave us His life and in order to follow Him, He demands that we give Him our life … and that includes our money.  As such, when you and I see the money we earn as an opportunity to give, rather than an opportunity to buy, we not only honor the Lord and live in a manner worthy of the Gospel, but we practically kick the false god of materialism in the face a long with the frustration and agony that goes with it!    If you are not living on a budget contact Jonathan Pugh (Jonathan.Pugh@DareToVenture.org) and sign up for our next financial class … learning to budget is the key to not just living pay check to pay check but also basking in all the fun and joy of giving!!!  As we become more and more a church of financial givers we will simultaneously become more and more effective in engaging the world far from God with the Gospel of Jesus Christ to know and follow Him.

My family and I give to Venture through our e-giving opportunity.  You can give online here or you can sign up for our online community that enables you to set up auto-giving (what I do), print your giving record for tax purposes and link in to all kinds of small groups and ministry opportunities in Venture!

Let’s Go Man Go!

Austin Rammell

Lead Pastor, Venture

Venture Church

A church of believers in Dallas, NC who want to change the world. Join us for modern worship, biblical teaching and strategic ministry to impact communities throughout Gaston County.
Venture Church

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