Sometimes, difficulties can be a blessing in disguise, as two pastors explain from sunny Melbourne, Florida, where Faith Fellowship Church is in an exciting time of growth.
“We had come to a very difficult time, a major bank that we had been with for a number of years, and we had been faithfully paying our payments they decided to change their business plan and exclude churches,” said Senior Pastor Dr. Jeffrey Hoy.
Little understanding, extra charges from bank
The bank left the fellowship with very little time to figure out a solution, while extending the relationship at great expense to the ministry, he explained. Hoy and Executive Pastor Paul Reece reached out to Christian Investors Financial (CIF) to solve the problem.
“They were willing to come in and really, they rescued us at a time when we desperately needed some help in order to continue with the buildings that we have here,” said Pastor Hoy.
They asked: 'How can we do this together?' I’m not under those metrics anymore. We’re not under those guidelines. We’re in a relationship.
Multiple buildings serve strong ministry structure
The church has a substantial worship center where a great deal of ministry happens: classes, productions, three worship services per week and more. A building built earlier is a multi-use structure it utilizes for fellowship, Sunday school and preschool.
Pastor Reece has considerable experience in church finance, and said it was very difficult working with banks. “There was constant paperwork, constant things that we had to do, constant metrics we had to meet,” he said. CIF was much different.
“They asked: 'How can we do this together?' I’m not under those metrics anymore,” the executive pastor said. “We’re not under those guidelines. We’re in a relationship.”
The executive pastor said when there is an issue, the church and CIF are comfortable to call each other and figure out the best way to work through it.
Ministries supporting ministries
But, the pastors said the most exciting thing about working with CIF is the knowledge that the interest the church pays goes back into ministry.
“We know that the money we’re paying isn’t building big glass buildings somewhere, or giving giant bonuses to someone,” said Pastor Hoy. “It’s actually going back into church plants, church projects, missions and ministries- and that is a very rewarding thing.”
Pastor Reece said they’re not paying into an organization that’s using the funds to benefit themselves. He hears stories of churches that can’t go to the banks, can’t afford their guidelines and requirements.
“CIF comes in and they have programs where they help them get started affordably, and at a scale they can work with.”
Watch video: "Church abandoned by bank"
For more information, be sure to check out “Church Loans Simplified” at christianinvestors.org.