CRC Churches International Australia Inc.: mini-charity review

Mini review of CRC Churches International Australia Inc. (CRC), an organisation that seeks donations[1] and is, under one of the names its uses, a member of Missions Interlink. (Including the answers to the questions that the Australian charity regulator, the ACNC, suggests that you ask.)

For the previous review, see here.

Are they responsive to feedback[2]?

  • I sent them a draft of this review. Like last year, they did not respond.

Is CRC registered?

  • As a charity, yes, but (still) in its former name, Christian Revival Crusade National Council.
  • CRC is a South Australian incorporated association (number A1283).
  • CRC operates, per the ACNC Register, throughout Australia.
    • It is (still) not registered to fundraise in any of the six states that have a licensing regime applicable to charities.[3].
    • It (still) doesn’t have the registration required to do business interstate (an ARBN).

What do they do?

  • ‘About’ on the website says that
    • CRC Churches International, previously known as The Christian Revival Crusade, is an established pentecostal (sic) denomination that started in Australia, has expanded throughout the Asia Pacific, and now encompasses a global vision.
  • More specifically, these are its ‘departments’:
    • Evangelism
    • ‘Missions’
      • This department has its own website.
      • It trades under the name CRC Missions International, but this name is still not registered.
    • ‘Training’
      • This department, CRC Training, also has its own website.
      • It also uses the name CRC College of Ministry. CRC Training is not a registered name, but CRC College of Ministry is.
    • Ministry to Youth
    • Ministry to Children
    • Church Planting’
  • For what they did in 2017, see the Annual Report. (What they did in 2017 should be in the AIS 2017. However, just as they did in 2015, they reported their vision and mission, not activities and outcomes.)

Does CMS-T share the Gospel?[4]

  • No

What impact are they having?

  • No information found.

What do they spend outside the costs directly incurred in delivering the above impact, that is, on administration?

  • In the Consolidated Financials, and noting their limitations (see Financial Report 2016, below), the two ‘Donations’ items total 38% of expenses. Defining ‘direct’ as these expenses means that ‘administration’ is 62%.

Do they pay their board members?

  • The CMS-T governing document does not prohibit this.
  • There is insufficient disclosure of expenses to conclude on board members’ fees.

Can you get a tax deduction?

  • No

Is their online giving secure?

  • Other than a donation to a project in the shop, online giving is not available. It is stillcoming soon’.

Is their reporting up-to-date?

  • Yes (lodged four and a half months after their year-end, six weeks earlier than last year).
    • But if you are considering a large donation, I would ask for full accounts for the year ended 30 June 2017 (see below), and an update.

Does their reporting comply with the regulator’s requirements?

  • AIS 2017: No
    • What they did in 2017 should be in the AIS 2017. However, just as they did in 2015, they reported their vision and mission, not activities and outcomes.
    • Two of the names under ‘Other Name(s) are incorrect, and their one business name is missing.
    • The totals in the ‘Comprehensive Income Statement summary’ do not agree with those in the Consolidated Financials.
    • No Financial Report for 2017 is attached.
  • Financial Report 2017[5]: Like last year, no.
    • There is no report where one should be lodged.
    • There is a ‘Financial Report’ in the Annual Report that has been lodged under ‘Charity’s Documents’, but
      • There is but a single page giving the figures for CRC.
        • No proper financial statements.
        • Summary information only.
        • Without headings.
        • No prior year figures.
        • No Notes
        • No ‘Responsible Persons Declaration’
      • The audit report, by Con Markou, MA Partners[6] Chartered Accountants, is on a financial report that is not included in the ‘Financial Report’.
        • The report that he audited was missing two of the four required financial statements.
        • The ‘Financial Report’ also includes
          • A Balance Sheet and an Income & Expenses (sic), with no Notes, that exclude two of the ‘departments’ (see above).
          • A Balance Sheet and an Income & Expenses (sic), with no Notes, for one ‘department’ of CRC, CRC Missions International.
        • A non-compliant audit report on CRC Missions International by David Wilder CA, WMC Accountants[7].
        • A Statement of Financial Position and a Statement of Profit or Loss & Other Comprehensive Income, with no Notes, for one ‘department’ of CRC, CRC College of Ministry.
        • A non-compliant audit report on CRC College of Ministry by Paul Fox, CPA, of Super Audit Services.

What financial situation was shown by that Report?

  • In the Consolidated Financials, and noting their limitations (see Financial Report 2016, below),
    • The surplus was 12% of revenue.
    • ‘Employment expenses’ are 11% of total expenses.
    • 60% of the liabilities are non-current loans payable; there are only $2K of non-current assets.
    • The working capital position is strong.

What did the auditor say about the last financial statements?

  • The audit report, by Con Markou, MA Partners[8] Chartered Accountants, includes a ‘clean’ opinion. But it is on a financial report that is not included in the ‘Financial Report’.

If a charity, is their information on the ACNC Register correct?

  • No
    • Two of the names under ‘Other Name(s) are incorrect, and their one business name is missing.
    • ‘Who the Charity Benefits’ is blank.
    • There is no Financial Report 2017.
    • ‘Phone’ and ‘Website’ are (still) blank, but these are not compulsory.

What choices do you have in how your donation is used?

  • Missions, bequests and ‘Donation to Colombo Project’.

Where were your (net) donations sent?

  • This is not disclosed.

Who are the people controlling the organisation?

  • Not shown on the website, but from the ACNC Register (under ‘Responsible Persons’):
    • Christopher Carmody
    • Philip Cayzer
    • Greg Jones
    • Ian Miller
    • Trevor Murphy
    • Danny Parker
    • Bruce Sharman
    • Vasilis Vasilakis
    • Hans Voortman
    • Matthew Wyatt
    • There are 11 directorships recorded for the name ‘Ian Miller’, and nine for ‘Bruce Sharman’. And the register only covers charities, not all not-for-profits, and of course doesn’t include for-profit organisations.  Therefore, if after eliminating the charities for which CRC’s Ian Miller and CRC’s Bruce Sharman is not a director, you are left with the total being more than a handful, it would be legitimate for you to question whether their ability to discharge their fiduciary responsibilities is threatened.  Especially if they have a full-time job.
  • The Board is responsible to the membership. The constitution says that ‘“Members” means persons holding a National Minister’s Credential, according to clause 5.3.1.4 of this Constitution.’ (clause 3). There are over 400 names listed under ‘Credentials’ in the Annual Report.

To whom are CRC accountable?

 

 

  1. Here, here, and one request in the shop.
  2. I agree with Randy Alcorn [Money, Possessions, & Eternity, Tyndale, 2003] when he says that ‘Any Christian leaders who resist financial accountability make themselves suspect.’ [page 425].
  3. The law in this area is not straightforward and advice varies, so check with the charity before drawing any conclusions.
  4. “Good living and social concern are important [to the cause of evangelism], but they are not uniquely Christian graces…I’ve met a lot of fine Hindus, Muslims and atheists. Just living the life is not going to bring someone to Christ. There is much more to it than that. We must help people, certainly, but we must also share with them why we are motivated to do so. We must stand against injustice, poverty and need, but we must at the same time point to the One who brings justice and who can meet the deepest need. Until they know our reasons, how can they come to know our Lord?” [Dan Armstrong, the Fifth Gospel: The Gospel According to You, Anzea Books, pp. 13-14.
  5. I use the Pinnacle Financial Statements, respected in the profession as providing a very sound basis for producing compliant financial reports. To this I add an assessment of materiality (both quantitative and qualitative), where the users being considered are donors.
  6. This should be ‘CMA Partners’.
  7. This should be ‘WMC Accounting’.
  8. This should be ‘CMA Partners’.

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