Positive financial performance equips communion to serve during challenging times

Photo: LWF (Finance chart)
Photo: LWF (Finance chart)

LWF Finance Chairperson Report to the Executive Committee

(LWI) – The Lutheran World Federation’s (LWF) “excellent financial performance in 2019 contributed to the stability of the organization,” making it well equipped “to meet the current global challenges of COVID-19 and to continue serving humanity as a worldwide communion of churches.”

Oberkirchenrat Olaf Johannes Mirgeler (Germany), chairperson of the LWF Finance Committee wrote this in his report to the Executive Committee meeting online 10-16 June. Mirgeler thanked the communion’s member churches and encouraged them to continue supporting LWF’s vital work. “I am grateful for the outstanding leadership and wise counsel and commitment from member churches.”

The excellent financial performance contributed to the stability of the organization, and equips it well to meet the current global challenges of COVID-19 and to continue serving humanity as a worldwide communion of churches.
Oberkirchenrat Olaf Johannes Mirgeler, LWF Finance Committee Chairperson

LWF’s consolidated audited financial statements for 2019 show a total expenditure of EUR 152 million, a slight increase over the EUR 146 million spent in 2018. This was used to implement work in theological studies, for working towards the unity of the church, equipping and supporting member churches for holistic mission, advocacy for the basic rights of people, and serving people in need through LWF World Service. Between 2018 and 2019 there was an increase in theological work and support to member churches.

The Geneva Communion Office actual expenditure was EUR 11.56 million, which shows a positive variance of five percent compared to the approved budget of EUR 12.21 million. The coordination budget is allocated to meet the LWF headquarters’ expenses for the respective departments and offices.

LWF’s income is generously contributed by the member churches and their related agencies, the United Nations, European Union, governmental funding sources, ecumenical and other partners, and individual donors.

LWF’s membership fee contribution in 2019 decreased slightly to EUR 2.65 million, which was three percent below the expected total of EUR 2.9 million. The fee is calculated on a “fair share” principle aimed at ensuring that every member church can make a contribution that is commensurate with its respective financial circumstances.

The LWF Endowment Fund, a separate legal entity to help secure financial stability for the organization, had received a total of CHF 15,289,406 by 31 December 2019. The fund yielded a positive performance during the year, which made it possible to distribute CHF 767,721 to support LWF’s budget for 2021.

The full Report of the Chairperson of the Finance Committee provides a breakdown of LWF’s finances.


Report of the Chairperson of LWF Finance Committee


Audit report 2019 - summary

DWS Balance Sheet 2019

DWS Income and Expenditure Statement 2019

The Executive Committee oversees the proper functioning of the LWF between Council meetings, and normally convenes twice a year. Chaired by LWF President Archbishop Dr Panti Filibus Musa from Nigeria, its members include the seven regional Vice-Presidents, chairpersons of the Finance Committee, Committee for World Service and the specified Committees. Members of the Communion Office Leadership Team also attend its meetings.

Executive Committee