Month: June 2015

Gospel for Asia fights accusations of financial impropriety, cult-like behaviour

Gospel for Asia founder KP Yohannan

Gospel for Asia (GFA), the mission organisation founded by KP Yohannan, is regarded as one of the most signicant missionary movements of the late 20th century. Based in Texas, it has a presence in Asian countries including India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, China and Thailand. It supports more than 50 Bible colleges, founded its own network of congregations – Believers Church – and is active in humanitarian work and education.

Now, however, it is fighting accusations of a lack of financial transparency and that it practises an authoritarian form of church discipline that has left a trail of damage behind it.

Questions about its financial affairs have been raised by blogger Warren Throckmorton, who has studied publicly available documents detailing GFA’s bank holdings in India. He revealed that GFA was using students and staff to transfer undeclared cash to India, a practice known as “smurfing” which the organisation has now ended. He also posted documents showing large amounts of cash held in GFA and Believers Church bank accounts and queried apparent discrepancies between the amounts sent from the US to India and amounts declared as having been received.

GFA’s Chief Operating Officer David Carroll told Christian Today that it was important to understand that GFA India and Believers Church were separate entities from Gospel for Asia USA. While he did not provide detailed figures, when asked about the cash reserves apparently held in Indian accounts, he said: “Like any nonprofit organisation or ministry, money in these bank accounts ebbs and flows throughout the year. It does not just sit there. The account balance will swell and then decline as the money is spent according to donor designations.”

He also said that money could not be spent until it could be used for the specific project for…


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