Platt to discuss IMB’s future in live Web event
    October 22 2015 by IMB staff

    International Mission Board (IMB) President David Platt invites pastors, church leaders and members to be part of an IMB-hosted live stream event Oct. 27, 3 p.m. EDT, to discuss the organization’s present challenges and future vision.
    IMB leaders announced in an Aug. 27 press release an organizational restructuring plan that will reduce personnel expenses and balance their budget. IMB’s 2014 fiscal goals fell $21 million short. Deficits totaled more than $210 million in the last six years.


    IMB President David Platt invites pastors, church leaders and members to be part of an IMB-hosted live stream event Oct. 27, 3 p.m. EDT, to discuss the organization's present challenges and future vision.

    The plan includes two personnel reduction phases that will be enacted through early 2016. The first phase includes a voluntary retirement incentive for qualifying employees through the end of 2015. The second phase will involve a voluntary resignation incentive for all employees along with a possible reduction of IMB personnel in 2016. IMB leaders said in a frequently-asked-questions document also released on Aug. 27, “It is expected that the 600-800 people who step aside from the IMB in the next six months will not be stepping ‘onto the sidelines of mission,’ but instead will be moving into a new phase of involvement in mission.”
    Platt said in a conference call that previously enacted budget reduction plans – like reducing the number of new missionaries sent through IMB – are “no longer viable in light of present realities. IMB can’t continue to overspend as we have.”
    Personnel expenses make up approximately 80 percent of IMB’s budget, according to Platt. The number of IMB missionaries on the field hit a high mark in 2009 at 5,600, he added. To remedy budget shortfalls, previous IMB leadership enacted a plan to slowly reduce the number of missionaries to 4,200. The number currently stands at 4,800.
    Platt emphasized that recent decisions in no way question the decisions of previous IMB leaders. “There are no ideal steps at this point,” he added.
    Sebastian Traeger, IMB executive vice president, estimates the new financial plans will balance the budget by 2017. Platt repeatedly emphasized in the conference call the importance of maximizing IMB’s resources so the greatest number of people across the globe can hear the gospel. IMB’s organizational health is an important aspect of that mission. The changes announced, Platt said, are “for the sake of short-term financial responsibility and long-term organizational stability. We want to be in a position where we can operate within our budget, where we are not continuing to deplete reserves.”
    The hour-long online video forum will provide a way to dialogue as participants ask Platt questions via Twitter and Facebook. Beginning Tuesday morning, Oct. 27, live stream viewers can submit questions on IMB’s Facebook page or through Twitter by using #IMBLiveStream.
    “We must get to a healthy place in the present in order to be in a healthy position for the future,” Platt said. “We want to move forward with innovative vision, wise stewardship and high accountability to the churches we serve, the peoples we reach and the God we worship.”
    Register for the Web event at For questions or comments about the IMB live stream, email
    (EDITOR’S NOTE – This story was submitted by IMB’s communications team. BR Content Editor Seth Brown added to the story.)

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    10/22/2015 12:38:57 PM by IMB staff | with 0 comments
    Filed under: David Platt, IMB reset, missionaries

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