It appears that the NAD is voting with their dollars (and has a decreasing membership as well).
In most every non-profit organizations, Religious ones as well, there is “never enough money” to do all that one would like to do.
Contributing members DO make a difference, and when contributions are based upon the Economy of the Country which influences what a member can give [example 10% tithe].
With an aging membership, retirement from good jobs and onto Social Security or other non-job income, there will be a drastic decrease in what this particular generation can give.
If we are seeing a decrease in membership among the 25-45 members [who are advancing in their job work places, and receiving increases in pay with longevity] then there will be a loss of potential contributions.
Another area that might be concern — COMPETITION with Church. I have heard that many sometimes send their Tithe to some of these Independent Ministries instead of placing it in the church offering plate to be sent through Church Channels.
I am sure God does not frown on that, but it is something the Church cannot count on being Counted.
When Social Security was first begun by Pres. Roosevelt, the average of dying was around 68 to 70. Now this age of death has been drastically increased since then to 80, 84. Many living longer. Same with Retired SDA workers. Sustentation and other Retirement benefits have to be distributed much longer now than they did years ago. With longer living persons, the aging process and chronic health conditions increase, debility increases and longer lived disability issue costs.
There was a time when Pastors could opt out of Social Security. I dont think they are doing so now. But that is an issue not talked about.
There are a LOT of Financial Burdens put on the Budget and the Income and Potential Income of the Church that is NOT talked about to the General Church Membership.
Perhaps we NEED MORE CHURCH INDUSTRIES. Run by, and in the name of church members, but the bulk of the generated monies being put to Church Use, either at the Union level, or at the Division level.
I think we need to cut out the overweight topheavy management staff in our church. Put more people to work at the grassroots level, and fewer administrators. Living off our tithe money, those desk-job people are using up the money we ought to be giving to the local preachers.
If all denominational employees contributed to Social Security would that no lessen the amount needed for retirement pensions?