Adventist News

​ATCU Conducts First Treasury Conference

As administrators, we must be involved in protecting the organization’s resources as well as its reputation,” said Paul Douglas, director of the General Conference Auditing Services (GCAS), as he gave one of four presentations during the Atlantic Caribbean Union's first treasury conference. The event was held on February 3 and 4, 2014, in Nassau, the Bahamas.

The Atlantic Caribbean Union Mission, one of the newest unions of the Inter-American Division, is only three years old (organized November 29, 2010), and consists of Adventist membership in three countries: The Bahamas, The Cayman Islands, and the Turks & Caicos Islands.

About 30 treasury workers from schools, conferences, missions; along with union administrators and staff, gathered for the two-day event. The group sought ways to improve transparency and accountability, and to prevent fraud in local churches and other institutions.

Douglas reminded the church leaders that today’s generation of lay members is much different from those of previous generations. "In the past, members returned tithes and asked no questions. Now in this generation, yes members are still giving but are requiring accountability, and it is the workers’ responsibility to always be transparent and accountable. Administrators are to always protect the church by preventing abuses.” He added that "It is always important to remember that God is our CEO."

The other presenters included: Elizabeth Christian, associate treasurer of the Inter-American Division (IAD); Sandra Thomas, IAD assistant treasurer; and Ivelisse Herrera, IAD deputy treasurer. Thomas gave accountants training and a hands-on demonstration on the standard accounting software of the Adventist Church, Sunplus. She also gave administrators tips on accessing reports to assess the financial status of their organization.

Kimberley Byran, an accountant with the South Bahamas Conference, observed that the sessions were informative, interactive, and enlightening. "I understand more clearly and I am better able to carry out my responsibility in such a key area in the church,” she remarked.

Another participant, Tatiana Bush, an accountant with the Cayman Islands Conference, also shared that the conference was very beneficial. "We all look forward to implementing the practical tips gained from the various presentations as we return to our responsibilities at the conference,” she added. “We also look forward to the next conference."

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