Serving those who serve

Charity | Groups minister on the front lines, and on the home front
by Warren Cole Smith
Posted 2/09/08, 12:00 am

The military and political impact of the troop surge in Iraq is receiving ample coverage-but what about its effect on the spiritual lives of military families?

Suzann Mayfield, director of marketing and communications for Military Community Youth Ministries (MCYM), sees big changes: "More moms involved. More dual military families, with both parents deployed. . . . We haven't seen a situation like this, perhaps ever, for military families."

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Creflo Dollar

'Church' and state

Charity | Religious nonprofit organizations are required to share their tax returns
by Warren Cole Smith
Posted 1/26/08, 12:00 am

Some 750,000 religious nonprofit organizations in America are required by law to share their Form 990 tax returns with anyone who asks to see them. Form 990s reveal income, and also information such as the compensation of key executives.

But what if you don't want people-including Sen. Charles Grassley of the Senate Finance Committee-to see your tax returns? No problem. Just call yourself a church.

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Bodies, not souls

Charity | A group that feeds children does not a ministry make
by Warren Cole Smith
Posted 1/12/08, 12:00 am

Viewers of The Inspiration Networks, Trinity Broadcasting Network, and Sky Angel are familiar with heart-wrenching infomercials from the Christian Children's Fund (CCF). Founded in 1938, it is one of the nation's largest relief organizations, with a 2006 income exceeding $206 million. It is also average or slightly above average in financial efficiency, with less than 20 percent of CCF income typically going to fundraising and administrative costs.

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