January Appeal

January 2009

Dear Friend,


In my 38 years of marriage to Bobby, she has never said, "I told you so!" She has a far more powerful statement, "You'll find I'm usually right!" And she is - 98% of the time.

She told me in December that I made a big mistake in my very soft year-end appeal by simply saying that Advocates had a 15% shortfall in 2008 that needed to be covered that month. She said that 15% sounds like the tip you leave at a restaurant. Other ministries gave specific figures.

In our case, the 15% shortfall on our $1.6 million total 2008 budget (with the Global Convocation accounting for $915,000 or 60% of the total) was about $240,000. The main reason for the shortfall was that our December gifts were at least 60% below last year's gifts, no doubt due to the economy.

No delegate had a free ride. The typical African and Asian invested at least $2,400 in air fare and conference expenses. For some this was at least one year's salary.

I had planned on helping each delegate with $1,000. But because of the special rates for students and others with very limited means, the actual cost was $1,400 each.

For the first time in 28 years of writing appeals for ministries that I've led, we are now facing a financial crisis. In response, we have significantly cut our budget, but we still need your help to retire the debt we carried into 2009.

Bobby and I have reinvested a substantial portion of my Advocates' take home pay every year for 18 years. The enclosed Never Owner, Always Steward explains why.

Help! says it all. Your gifts are needed now more than ever before, while...

Living in His-Story,


Sam Ericsson
Founder & President

P.S. Recent chest and abdomen MRI and x-rays show no problems. But my urologist has informed me that the bladder cancer is back. I go in for surgery on February 2. We appreciate your prayers. Bobby says it's due to stress. She's probably right - again!