(From FOC Member Rev. Everett Mendoza)
Published by Pagmata on February 26, 2018
To our Pagmata partners and friends –
Don’t be deceived and misled by anything that comes out of Rannieh Mercado’s posts.
Firstly, this thing is not about Marigza, et.al. versus Mendoza et. al. This about UCCP, what’s good, true, just and righteous for and in the name of the Church – its life, work and mission.
Secondly, we’ve expressed to the Council of Bishops during our June 2017 dialogue that the FOC is all for the development of church properties for the benefit of church workers and especially for its mission. There is absolutely no conflict here.
The problem is that Marigza, et. al. are putting all church properties in the hands of private, for-profit stock corporations as the developers. We proposed that these properties be made productive by the Church itself with due diligence through its constitutional and organizational instrumentalities – the CSRDS in each of the three judicatories working together with the leadership and direction of the General Secretary upon approval of the Church’s legislative bodies. We also proposed what we call “Signature Projects” to realize the Church’s three-fold preaching-teaching-healing mission and added livelihood projects for rural churches and communities.
The national leadership chose to ignore the FOC and disregarded the CSRDs – national, Conference and local church.
This is the point of conflict, a conflict of policy and management never a conflict of personalities which is being spread to misled and confuse the members.
The FOC with the support of PAGMATA contends that our approach to property development is compliant to the CBL and policies of the Church and consistent with the mission of the Church. On the other hand, the national leadership is moving the Church to a direction that undermines the letter and spirit of the CBL, alienates church properties from UCCP ownership, control and management and allows the use of proceeds for activities not consistent with the Church’s mission.
Finally, but not the least, the corporate approach to the development of church properties opens the door wide open to top church leaders to milk these corporations for personal enrichment.
FOC’s basic position: in-house development of church properties through the CSRDs with the help of professional consultants, which is the likely reason for its failure in the past. We have some very good examples of success – Brokenshire Integrated Health Ministries, a non-stock corporation; Southern Christian College under Dr. Edwin Balaqui’s presidency, and others.
The National Treasurer, on the other hand, took upon himself the role of professional expert in property development through an independent corporation, which obviously is a conflict of interest. For the General Secretary and the jurisdictional bishops to be the directors of the board is also a clear conflict of interest. The corporations established have a life of their own beyond the reach of the Church’s governing bodies. How can the Church’s officers serve the interests of both? This is a classic example of Jesus’ admonition, “No one can serve both God Mammon.”
Let Marigza’s pitbull Rannieh Mercado answer this issue rather than go into non-issues between Marigza and Mendoza.