Presbyterians, Lutherans cut jobs, reduce budgets

Slumping stock portfolios; declines in donations
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America both have slashed their 2009 budgets, cutting programs and laying off scores of personnel as denominations continue to suffer from the recession.

The ELCA, the nation’s largest Lutheran denomination, announced a $5.6 million reduction in its 2009 budget on March 31. The cut was necessary in part because regional synods plan to decrease their contributions to the denomination by $2.4 million this year, church leaders said.

Since last November, the ELCA has eliminated more than 23 jobs and cut 12 additional vacant positions. All churchwide units reduced their budgets for 2009, staff salaries were cut by 3 percent, and grants to churches, colleges, universities, seminaries and social services were slashed, according to an ELCA statement.


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