Financial Reports of Four Quarters
Lets do the Numbers!
(From the January 2002 Members Muse
Fiscal 2001 has closed out as a tremendous year for Four Quarters. We have more than met our goal for Members’ giving to the Capital Funds Drive, revenues from Four Quarters sponsored fund-raisers saw a major increase and we mostly met our expense budget for the year. Most importantly, we have $36,000 in the Land Trust CD on deposit. Woo-Hoo!
As you read this commentary, glance across the page at the line item listings, and in particular the changes over the past four years. They will give a good picture of our growth over the years. And we will not be publishing a 2002 budget until after our bank loan to purchase the Leisinger Tract is locked in. This financial report was created in mid December 2001, so there will be some changes when we post the final figures to the website.
Memberships and Donations are always the purest form of support and are the most genuine indicator of the health of any Church or nonprofit. Donations, Pledges, and Memberships increased 20% over 2000, to $27,500. Gifts specifically to the Land Trust totaled an additional $25,000. Taken together they constitute a phenomenal 31% of our total income. This is without a doubt the strongest charitable support of any Earth Religious-NeoPagan organization… simply unprecedented. In this way our Members are leading the NeoPagan-EarthReligious community.
Our own Fund-Raisers have grown from 2000’s total of $39,000 to this year’s $56,500, a 45% increase from last year. Stones Rising and Drum ’n’ Splash both posted strong increases in attendance, and meal plans through the Starvin’ Artist have doubled for the year. We served almost 2,500 meals at Stones Rising alone. We expect that these trends will continue for the 2002 season, particularly with the introduction of Ecstasis for Beltaine and the return of The Body Tribal. It is worth pointing out that by the close of the 2001 season over 40% of our registrations were coming in by credit card, through our website.
Grounds Fees include individual weekend camping fees and charges to outside groups for use of the camp. This is the only area where we fell under income budget for 2001. Sadly, the SHARE organization has ceased to exist and with it their fine music festivals. The loss of this event is directly tied to our falling below budget projections for outside events.
Land Fund Gifts are those moneys, separate from pledges and general contributions, that have been given specifically for the Capital Funds Drive. In 2001 these gifts totaled $25,000 and have been matched by $11,000 from the Church. Because they are viewed as one time gifts, they are shown as a separate income line item in order not to be confused with regular operating income. Elsewhere in this Muse you can read about our plans for the purchase of the Leisinger Tract, and possibilities for the future of this incredible fund-raising appeal.
Our Business Line of Credit with Hagerstown Trust is a major development for the financial health of Four Quarters; building our credit-worthiness while providing wintertime operating funds. In fact it is what allowed us to print the color cover for the 2002 calendar. The $13,500 we have borrowed in 2001 is shown as a separate line item so that it does not become confused with regular operating income.
Expenses basically group themselves into three classes: Permanent assets that have real tangible value; Basic holding costs that keep the doors open; and Program and mission costs that provide the services for which Four Quarters was founded.
Capital Equipment, Land Purchase and Improvements both increased above our budgeted levels, largely through continued improvements to the Meeting Hall building and the kitchen it contains. When meal plans are increasing and volunteer staff works so hard, it seems right to go over budget with continued improvements. Mortgage payments for the Members Village have settled down to $2,500 for the next four years when the property will be paid off. Taken together these three classes of expenses totaled $30,250 for 2001. Although this was just a slight increase in spending over 2000, it was way over our budget. It’s hard not to continue making Four Quarters better.
The Leasehold, Office Supplies, Professional Services, Repairs, Transportation and Utilities are expenses that constitute our overhead and are difficult to reduce.
Professional services went over budget, and almost all of this was due to the setup and fees from the new Merchant Credit Card account. Many of these are one-time fees associated with setting up the account and equipment and will not occur next year. Our recurring transaction fees are running about 4% of the $30,000 that was charged this year.
Taken together our holding costs totaled just under $42,000 for the year, up from $40,500 in 2000.
Our Program Costs; Communications, Church Ward Support, Community Support, Operations and Presenters Costs all go towards sustaining the mission of Four Quarters, and as is proper this is the largest category of costs. In 2000 these costs totalled $36,000, of which $12,000 was Moon Service and meal plan food and about $6,000 directly to cover health and clothing of the Church Wards. For 2001 these costs increased to just under $57,000.
In 2001 Church Ward support went over budget for two reasons. We have encountered unexpected health costs for one of the Church Wards, and these costs alone account for most of the increase. Secondly, we have become much better at tracking Household Food separate from Moon Service or Meal Plan food, and these costs were larger than we had planned due to better accounting and the large number of guests that share meals separate from Moon Services.
Moon Service and Meal Plan food costs increased to $13,000 even though the amount of food served increased quite a bit more. This is due to better storage and equipment, buying in larger quantities, excellent kitchen staff and assigning more of these food costs to Church Ward Support.
Communications costs increased significantly, from $7,500 to almost $10,000, due to a 6,500 print run for the 2001 calendar and large print runs for event flyers and the Members Muse. We expect this trend will continue and we plan to print and give away 10,000 copies of the Wheel of the Year Calendar this year. We never seem to be able to meet demand for our publications and they are a very important form of outreach for Four Quarters.
Another significant trend in Program costs is a doubling of Church contributions to other religious and nonprofit groups. For 2001 this totaled just under $3,000. We feel this is an important way of acknowledging our own blessings of support while furthering the growth of EarthReligion.
Our payments to our Business Line of Credit are separately listed so that they do not become confused with regular operating expenses. The $8,000 we have paid against our Line of Credit leaves a current $5,500 liability which is carried over to our account balances.
In conclusion, a very strong year of growth and change at Four Quarters. The Capital Funds Drive is very close to our original goal of $40,000 and we have established a commercial credit relationship with Hagerstown Trust. Our Merchant Credit Card and website-based memberships and registrations have met with great success. And while all of this occurred we continued with improvements to the Camp and equipment for the kitchen.
All in all, much to be proud of. I think that the coming year will be every bit as successful as this last.
Fiscal 2001 Treasurer’s Report
Four Quarters Interfaith Sanctuary of EarthReligion
Four Quarters InterFaith Sanctuary Financial Report for Fiscal 2001
Jan 1998 Through Dec 15, 2001 Income and Expense by Category
INCOME 1998 1999 2000 2001 Budget 2001 Actual
4QF MEMBSHP 12,870 19,615 22,905 [20,000] 27,547
WARD INCOME 7,425 723 71,990 [3,000] 5,856
CONTRIBUTION 10,808 11,937 16,438 [12,000] 13,578
BELTAINE SPRING 0 960 2,175 [2,500] 3,562
DRUM AND SPLASH 5,134 5,142 7,385 [8,500] 17,300
HEALING SPIRIT 1,566 8150 0
MAGIC MOUNTAIN 2,960 4,642 3,918 0
STONES RISING 18,443 13,435 20,570 [24,000] 31,407
SWEAT LODGE 0 290  256
WOMEN’S GATHERING 0 1,090 1,890 [2,500] 3,502
GROUNDS FEES 11,473 17,735 30,986 [36,000] 31,000
ESPIRITU SANTO 0 01,090  575
OTHER INCOME 5,848 1,142 4,819 [3,000] 3,607
SUMMER CAMP 1,050 420995 [1,000] 0
Total Operating Income 79,258 84,929 115,658 [114,000] 138,190
Land Fund Donations [20,000] 25,198 (actual)
Credit Line Principle Borrowed 13,500 (5,500)
TOTAL 2001 INFLOWS 176,889
EXPENSES 1998 1999 2000 2001 Budget 2001 Actual
CAP EQUIPMENT 4,724 5,796 11,133 [4,000] 10,901
WARD SUPPORT 1,777 2,501 5,715 [8,000] 16,137
COMMNCTNS 7,151 7,084 7,417 [6,000] 9,984
COMNTY SUPRT 1,005 405 1,350 [2,000] 2,902
IMPROVEMENTS 4,199 8,801 14,928 [4,400] 16,799
LAND PURCHASE 0 4,552 9,631 [2,600] 2,593
LEASEHOLD 20,800 19,550 18,408 [19,000] 18,328
LOANS 715 136 2,550 0 0
OFFICE SUPPLIES 787 745 426  1,328
OPERATIONS 11,169 12,049 18,881 [25,000] 21,845
OTHER EXPENSE 1,446 1,563 842 [1,500] 2,421
PRESENTERS’ COSTS 4,479 5,394 5,137 [2,000] 2,740
PROFES’NL SERVICES 6,002 8,057 5,467 [3,500] 6,890
REFUND 2,650 1,170 355  949
REPAIRS+MAINT 2,329 2,105 3,917 [2,500] 1,052
TRANSPORTATION 1,836 1,400 4,510 [3,000] 5,487
UTILITIES 5,385 4,422 7,839 [9,000] 8,603
1998 1999 2000 2001 Budget 2001 Actual
Total Operating Expenses76,760 86,125 117,717 [93,500] 128,959
Credit Line Principle Paid 8,000
TOTAL OUTFLOWS 136,959
Total Operating Income 79,258 84,929 115,658 [114,000] 138,190
Land Fund Donations 0 5,800 3,500 [20,000] 25,198
Credit Line Principle Borrowed 13,500 (5,500)
TOTAL INFLOWS 176,889
BALANCE 2,498 -1,196 -2,058 [20,500] 39,930
Below you will find a brief summation of income and expense from fiscal 1996 through 1999. At the date of this tabulation 1999 lacks Decembers income and expense. At first these tables may seem confusing, but they will reward a close examination. Think of it a tree rings outlining the history of a living organism, year by year.
Noteworthy on the income side, in fall 1997 the church made the decision to emphasize memberships and members privileges rather than increasing general attendance at fundraising events. This was brought about by our experience of the 1997 season, which although showing strong attendance, brought with it high costs and all the attendant problems of hosting large numbers of people who were unaware of the Culture of Four Quarters. 1998 saw a strong increase in memberships and contributions, with many more people now attending events as members with their subsidized registrations, and a much improved atmosphere of sanctity on the Land. This growth was offset by the loss of income from the cancellation of our fall 1998 music festival. 1999 saw continued growth in memberships and the new lifetime memberships; and we will probably close the year just under 1997's levels. It is our expectation that Year 2000 will see 1997's levels exceeded by Four Quarters Members or people seriously considering membership.
INCOME LESS EXPENSES
On the expense side, while 1997 was peak income, it was far and away offset by the high costs, particularly Presenters, Communications and Operations. Operations is where we classify food costs and it is worth pointing out that in 1997 all food costs were catered by outside suppliers and paid for by meal plan tickets. By 1999 all food was prepared by Church staff and almost every festival featured a free Saturday Feast in addition to meal plans. Likewise communal dinners are now the norm for Moon Services. All this while total costs in the operations category dropped. 1999 has also seen a strong return to reinvestment in Capitol Improvements, Maintenance and Professional Service; as the Church broke ground for the Meeting Hall, bought the Members Village property and purchased a site generator for the 2000 season.
Service, Ceremony and Celebration
Joining the World of Spirit and the World of Today
a Work of Years... Stone by Stone