Australian Baptist Advancement, Inc
Proclaiming Christ and supporting Baptists in Australia

Questions and answers - about us

Why Australia?
We have a heart for God's work in Australia. Although approximately two-thirds of Australians identify themselves as 'Christian', less than 5% attend a Protestant church in any given week. While the evangelical church in Australia is active and in many ways healthy, the number of Australians who have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as their Savior is small as a percentage of the population.
Why Baptist?
Baptists are a small minority in Australia, far outnumbered by Anglicans (Episcopalians) and the Uniting Church (Methodist), in contrast with many parts of the United States. By promoting the Baptist denomination, we are also promoting the principles and doctrines Baptists believe in.
Where are you located?
We are incorporated in Texas and based in the Dallas area.
How can I contact you?
Please email us, You may also write PO Box 831973, Richardson, TX 75083-1973.
What type of corporation are you?
We are a nonprofit corporation. The IRS has determined that we are a 501(c)(3) public charity; you can confirm this here.
Do you have any paid staff?
No. All work is done on a voluntary basis.
What is your policy on director compensation or reimbursement?
We do not pay directors or provide them with any type of fringe benefits. We do not reimburse directors for any costs they incur in connection with ABAI.
What is your policy on director self-benefit?
Directors must never permit ABAI funds to benefit themselves in any way. This includes both direct and indirect means, and both cash and non-cash transactions. Entities that provide a financial (cash or non-cash) benefit to ABAI directors or their families (e.g. by employing, contracting with, or purchasing from an ABAI director) are prohibited from receiving ABAI funding. This policy is strictly enforced - also see the section on funding. Our certificate of incorporation requires us not to perform any activities that would be incompatible with 501(c)(3) status, and director self-benefit violates this requirement.
What are your affiliations?
We are not affiliated with any Baptist Convention or Union, either in the United States or Australia.
What are your beliefs?
We affirm the Southern Baptist Convention's Baptist Faith and Message 2000. The below section on funding may also give you some insights.
Questions and answers - giving

Who can give to ABAI?
Anyone who is sympathetic with our objectives! We can accept donations in both U.S. and Australian dollars.
How can I give?
Please make your check payable to 'Australian Baptist Advancement, Inc' and mail to PO Box 831973, Richardson, TX 75083-1973. For donations in Australian dollars via bank transfer, our details are: BSB 939200, A/C 070853569. We also accept donations via PayPal:

Will I receive a receipt?
Donations of $100 or more will receive a receipt upon request. Please ensure you send an email address (preferred) or mailing address with your donation, and allow 8 weeks to receive your receipt.
Is my gift tax deductible?
The IRS has determined that we are a 501(c)(3) public charity. In most cases, your gift will be tax-deductible in the United States; please consult your tax advisor.
Can I nominate a particular church or purpose for my gift?
You may suggest a recipient or express a desire for your gift to be used in a particular way. However, we want to be clear that ABAI's directors have complete discretion over the use of donated funds, and are not bound to honor such requests. All funding recipients must meet ABAI's criteria and agree to our procedures. In no case will funds be used for a purpose not compatible with 501(c)(3).
How quickly will my gift be disbursed?
We don't like to leave money sitting in our bank account, and aim to disburse funds promptly. However, to keep the administrative overheads low, we will also accumulate small gifts into a reasonably-sized transaction.
How much of my gift will be used on administration?
We keep administrative costs as low as possible. Our current estimate is that less than 0.5% of gifts will be spent on overhead.
How do I know where my money is going?
We will endeavor to keep donors updated via newsletters. You are also welcome to ask us questions and request information!
Do you accept non-cash donations? (Vehicles, etc.)
We are unable to accept donations of tangible property such as vehicles.
Questions and answers - funding

Who do you fund?
We financially support Baptist churches in Australia, or (less commonly) mission organizations operating in Australia.
What is your funding philosophy?
We aim to fund specific-purpose, short-term or strategic activities. Local churches should always have the objective of God meeting their needs from local sources in the longer term. In other words, ABAI is not interested in 'propping up' a church on an ongoing basis, but rather in removing barriers to establishment or growth.
What are the requirements for churches?
Churches must
  • Be located in Australia and have an Australian Business Number (ABN).
  • Identify themselves, and be able to be identified by others, as a Baptist church.
  • Have a structure and practices in line with Baptist principles. For example, locally governed and membership-based, with membership open to baptized believers.
  • Have beliefs that are not incompatible with the Baptist Faith and Message 2000.
We will not fund activities of a church that fails to meet any of these requirements.
What are the requirements for missions?
Missionary organizations must be physically performing work in Australia. They must be performing work aimed at spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ (i.e. not purely humanitarian). They must be identified as a Baptist organization, or performing work directly aimed at growing the Baptist denomination in Australia.
Do you require a church to be associated with a local Baptist Union?
No. This is irrelevant.
Do you have any doctrinal requirements?
As giving is largely from Baptists in the United States, we expect churches we support to have beliefs broadly aligned with mainstream Baptist beliefs in the United States. This means we will generally prefer to support churches which are relatively conservative by Australian Baptist standards. For example, we will not provide support to churches that endorse the ordination of women as pastors, or that are excessively charismatic.
What activities will you fund?
Examples of 'in scope' activities are salaries of personnel involved in growing the Baptist denomination (e.g. pastors), purchasing Bibles or Sunday School supplies, youth or other outreach ministries, payment of guest speakers, etc. We are obliged to ensure that funding is only used for charitable purposes, and we interpret this strictly. Therefore, we do not provide funding for real or other property that could be used for a non-charitable purpose. For example, we would not contribute to the purchase of a vehicle for a pastor, or to construction of a general-purpose church hall that may be rented out. Similarly, we do not provide funding for lobbying or public advertising on political issues of any kind.
How much will you fund?
Funding will be limited by the gifts we receive. While we do not expect to have million dollar endowments at our disposal, we also aim to make 'micro disbursements' the exception rather than the rule to keep overhead small.
Who decides on funding?
Our directors have ultimate and total responsibility for funding decisions. They may use reports and recommendations from others in reaching their decision.
What information do I need to supply to receive funding?
At minimum, we need evidence that a church qualifies according to our criteria (see above). We need a cover letter describing why funding is justified, and a thorough description of how the funds will be used. We need an accurate budget for the requested amount.
What is your compliance/audit policy?
We need to ensure that funds are being used both for God's glory and for the specific, compatible 501(c)(3) purpose that was approved by ABAI's directors. With this in mind, we require periodic (e.g. monthly or quarterly) reporting, which includes financial statements, and where relevant receipts, that satisfactorily demonstrate that funds provided by ABAI have only been used for the approved purpose. Where appropriate, ABAI may use third-party verification or audits.
What is your funds transfer policy?
ABAI will generally transfer funds to the local church, with conditions that the funds be used only for the specific purpose approved by ABAI. Where appropriate, we may pay invoices directly. Remember, our objective is to ensure good stewardship and that funds are always used for a compatible 501(c)(3) purpose. If a grant is for a specific term, e.g. a contribution towards a pastor's salary for a number of months, money will generally be released on a periodic basis rather than up-front, with future disbursements reliant upon ongoing conformance with our policies. If there is non-compliance (e.g. funding has been used for a purpose other than that which was specifically approved by ABAI), there may be an obligation to return funds.

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