Principles for Funding

Introduction

The Wycliffe Global Al­liance ini­ti­ated a global con­ver­sa­tion on fund­ing for Bible trans­la­tion move­ments in the con­text of the mis­sio Dei (mis­sion of God). Dur­ing 2013 – 2014, the Al­liance fa­cil­i­tated mis­si­o­log­i­cal con­sul­ta­tions in Turkey, Thai­land, Ger­many, Kenya and Mex­ico, with a to­tal of 145 par­tic­i­pants from 51 nations.

The stated pur­poses of the con­sul­ta­tions were:

  • Deepen the participants’ individual and collective missiological understanding.
  • Articulate a vision to guide funding practices in the context of God’s mission based on principles that are missiologically sound, contextually relevant, sustainable and globally respectful.

Con­sul­ta­tion par­tic­i­pants ex­plored chang­ing global and lo­cal fund­ing con­texts in light of bib­li­cal prin­ci­ples. This pro­vided an en­vi­ron­ment to build re­la­tion­ships, lis­ten to di­verse voices, gain in­sights and dis­cern to­gether op­por­tu­ni­ties and re­spon­si­bil­i­ties re­gard­ing fund­ing as a part of God’s mis­sion. The fund­ing prin­ci­ples emerged from these con­sul­ta­tions and were com­posed in har­mony with the Bible Trans­la­tion Phi­los­o­phy Statement and the Al­liance in Community.

The in­tended use of these prin­ci­ples is to en­cour­age fur­ther re­flec­tion and di­a­logue, and to as­sist in the de­vel­op­ment of fund­ing prac­tices among partners.

Principles

Principles 1-4: God’s mission belongs to Him

1)  The mis­sion of God is ful­filled by the Fa­ther, Son and Holy Spirit in per­fect unity. (Gen­e­sis 1:26; Matthew 3:16-17; John 17)

2)  Every­thing be­longs to God, in­clud­ing all the re­sources nec­es­sary to ful­fil His mis­sion. (Psalm 50:7-15; Psalm 24:1-2; Psalm 136; Isa­iah 66:1-2; Job 38:1-42:6)

3)  God in­vites and en­ables His global Church to cre­atively par­tic­i­pate with Him in His mis­sion. (Matthew 14:13-21; Matthew 28; John 14:16-15:8; John 20:19-23; Rev­e­la­tion 21:22-22:5)

4)  God’s love and gen­eros­ity are with­out lim­its. (John 3:16-17; John 15:9-15; Ro­mans 8:31-32; 1 Corinthi­ans 2:6-9; James 1:17)

Principles 5-7: God provides for His mission

5)  God cre­atively pro­vides for His mis­sion through a di­ver­sity of peo­ple, means and re­sources. (Ro­mans 12; Ex­o­dus; 1 Kings 17; 2 Kings 4; Matthew 3:4; Mark 6:35-44; Luke 8:1-3; Luke 10:1-12; Acts 3:1-9; Acts 18:1-3)

6)  As God’s im­age bear­ers, and fol­low­ing His ex­am­ple, each per­son can joy­fully and gen­er­ously give ac­cord­ing to the bless­ings God has given. (Gen­e­sis 1:26-28; Matthew 25:31-40; Luke 21:1-3; Acts 4:32-37; 2 Corinthi­ans 8:9; 2 Corinthi­ans 9:7)

7)  Recog­nis­ing God’s in­ten­tion for pro­vi­sion through com­mu­nity, the shar­ing of God’s gifts and re­sources, in­clud­ing money, is en­cour­aged so that all may ben­e­fit. (Matthew 19:16-30; Luke 12:22-34; Acts 2:41-47; Acts 11:27-30)

Principles 8-14: God enables us to share His resources

8)  All that we have is from God. (Gen­e­sis 1; Psalm 104:1-30; Colos­sians 1:9-20)

9)  Par­tic­i­pat­ing in the fund­ing of God’s mis­sion is an act of wor­ship. (Malachi 3:7-18; 2 Corinthi­ans 9:11-15)

10)  We give from what God has given us, ac­knowl­edg­ing our de­pen­dence on Him through prayer and obe­di­ence. (2 Corinthi­ans 9:9-10; 1 Tim­o­thy 6:17-19)

11)  No in­di­vid­ual or group is self-suf­fi­cient. Shar­ing re­sources is an in­ter­de­pen­dent re­la­tional ac­tiv­ity where all peo­ple and their con­tri­bu­tions are val­ued and every per­son can gra­ciously give an­d receive. (Ro­mans 12; Ro­mans 14:7; 1 Corinthi­ans 12)

12)  The shar­ing of re­sources needs to be sen­si­tive and re­spon­sive to mul­ti­ple cul­tures and con­texts. (1 Corinthi­ans 9:1-19; Philip­pi­ans 4:15-18; 3 John 3-8)

13)  In the process of giv­ing and re­ceiv­ing, thedig­nity of all is ho­n­oured and val­ued through re­spect­ful re­la­tion­ships and friend­ships. (1 Corinthi­ans 12:20-27; 1 Corinthi­ans 13:3; 2 Corinthi­ans 8:13-15)

14)  When plans among fund­ing part­ners work out dif­fer­ently than ex­pected, it is an op­por­tu­nity to come to­gether in an at­mos­phere of grace to dis­cern and align with what God is do­ing. (Acts 6:1-7; 2 Corinthi­ans 8:1-7)

Principles 15-19: God expects wise stewardship of His resources

15)  Stew­ard­ship and ac­count­abil­ity are im­por­tant to God, there­fore we are mu­tu­ally re­spon­si­ble to use His re­sources eth­i­cally and wisely. (Isa­iah 58:1-10; Luke 16:9-13; 1 Pe­ter 4:10)

16)  Stew­ard­ship val­ues are de­vel­oped and tested within com­mu­nity ac­cord­ing to bib­li­cal prin­ci­ples. (Hag­gai 2:1-9; James 2:1-18) 

17)  A col­lec­tive un­der­stand­ing of fund­ing needs is de­ter­mined through con­sid­er­a­tion of many fac­tors in­clud­ing mis­si­o­log­i­cal and the­o­log­i­cal re­flec­tion and di­a­logue. (Isa­iah 61:1-9; Mark 7:1-13; Luke 21:1-6; Ec­cle­si­astes 2:18-26)

18)  Trans­par­ent com­mu­ni­ca­tion and trust­ing re­la­tion­ships are es­sen­tial for di­a­logue re­gard­ing needs, and for avoid­ing is­sues con­cern­ing power, pride and con­trol. (Je­re­miah 22:1-16; Mark 8:14-21; Acts 2:42-47; Acts 5:1-11)

19)  Dis­cern­ment in fund­ing de­ci­sions in­cludes prayer, re­flec­tion, di­verse voices and recog­ni­tion of God’s mis­sion and His fo­cus on the trans­for­ma­tion and holis­tic restora­tion of peo­ple. (Matthew 10:1-16; Acts 11:27-30; Acts 20:32-36; Philip­pi­ans 4:10-23)

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