Balancing Needs and Shares
Each month there is a fixed amount of shares available from members that will be sent to meet needs. The amount of needs in a given month may fluctuate and be greater or less than the shares available.
When there are more Shares than Needs
When there are more shares available than the amount of needs submitted for a month, needs already received for the following month will be shared a month early. If there is still a surplus of share money when it is time to prepare the monthly newsletter mailing, the share amount for that month will be reduced to the amount needed. The most recent time this happened was in October 2008, when assigned share amounts were reduced by 15 percent.
When there are more Needs than Shares
In months when more needs are submitted than the amount of share money available, we use a process we call prorating. For example, if $1,000,000 in publishable needs are submitted, but there is only $900,000 in share money available, then only 90 percent of each need will be published.
If there is extra share money available the following month, the surplus will be used to help with the prorated needs. The other members are also encouraged to give additional gifts, if they are able. In addition, many members whose needs have been prorated have found that their health care providers will reduce their charges to the prorated amounts, or the members may receive additional money from unexpected sources. God has many ways of providing.
In twenty years of ministry, we’ve found that even prorated needs are met through generous extra giving and through the many other ways in which God provides.
Changing the Share Amounts
When it is necessary to prorate needs three months in a row, members are presented with a proposal to vote on a new share amount. If 60 percent of those voting approve the proposal, the share is changed.
For more details on how Shares and Needs are balanced see section VI.D. of the ministry guidelines.