At its April 5 meeting in Indianapolis, the Board of Directors of the UCC's Wider Church Ministries voted to contribute an additional $500,000 toward the costs of restructuring the denomina-tion's national setting.
The contribution will represent a cash investment in additional shares of equity in the ownership of the UCC building at 700 Prospect Ave. in Cleveland. The board took the action at the recommendation of WCM's investment committee.
"The board's goal was to do its best to ensure that mission dollars will not have to be used to deal with this debt," explains Dale Bishop, WCM's Executive Minister. "Our board wanted to avoid the need to secure a loan or to raise the rent to cover the debt. We saw this as the best way to avoid a negative impact on our mission endeavors."
In March, the Rev. John H. Thomas, UCC General Minister and President, announced to the UCC Executive Council that costs for restructure of the UCC's national setting will be about $2.4 million over estimates, although all but about $1 million of that had been covered.
This additional contribution will reduce the existing debt by about 50 percent.
"We are deeply grateful for the commitment of Wider Church Ministry's Board of Directors to the well being of the whole church," said Thomas. "This support will go far to enable us to move beyond the challenges of restructure to a new and exciting engagement in God's mission with our partners around the world."