1776/The Grand Idea

Door open for more extensive investigation
The leadership of the Orthodox Church in America has ignored calls for a special audit to determine if millions of church dollars were misspent in the 1990s, but has agreed to look over the books for the past two years.

The church’s ten-member Holy Synod of Bishops met in “extraordinary session” March 1 to discuss allegations of financial impropriety and parishioners’ calls for an outside financial audit.

The bishops agreed to adopt “best practices” for accounting in nonprofit organizations, but limited across-the-board audits to 2004 and 2005. The bishops also asked for advice on how to make church finances “more transparent, disciplined and accountable.”

In an apparent reference to a lay-led revolt over financial practices, the bishops also urged the church to “live as Christians in mutual repentance and forgiveness.”


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