Will congregations support capital campaigns whose purpose is to reduce their debt? Some experts say no. Others, such as Joel Mikell, president of RSI Stewardship, a capital campaign consulting group, say yes. Mikell’s experience is that congregations will support a debt campaign when they are aware that the debt is an obstacle to the congregations’ vision, mission, and ministry being accomplished. Mikell promotes debt reduction and offers congregations five questions for determining whether to strategically reduce their debt. The questions focus on the impact of the debt on congregational life. Mikell identifies “openness and transparency” about the debt itself as essential for a “successful debt campaign.” The openness and transparency include the reason for the debt, the total interest cost, the monthly and annual debt costs, and how ministry will be enhanced or expanded without the debt. Overall, this free downloadable article provides a start for a conversation about debt reduction.
Reviewed by Janet Hoover