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Christian Science church considering cuts because of ailing finances

Posted: Friday, February 13, 2004

BOSTON (AP) Officials at Christian Science headquarters told employees that troubled finances will force restructuring and an undetermined number of layoffs.

Contributions have not kept pace with needs and ''we must bring expenses in line,'' treasurer Walter D. Jones told a meeting of headquarters employees.

A church publication said that, between 2000 and 2003, overall capital (excluding fixed assets) dropped from $360 million to $236 million and operating capital from $143 million to $67 million. The denomination does not issue membership figures.

Virginia Harris, chairwoman of the church's board of directors, said the denomination has been drawing down bank balances ''by design'' and will now examine how much more to withdraw. Another issue is finances at the Christian Science Monitor, and whether to charge for the online version.

The faith's 14-acre world headquarters includes a $50 million visitor center and library that opened in 2002.

http://www.tfccs.com



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