Years ago at a business lunch in Minneapolis, Minnesota, I spoke with friends about the financial support given by Americans to Russian and Eastern European churches. I told them that this method of gratuitous financing will not help these churches succeed in becoming independent, and asked how these people could be taught to become financially independent. One of my friends responded that this was the pastors’ duty, when they returned from seminary. I inquired whether this solution was truly plausible, since these pastors receive no education at all on business or finance at seminary and even rely on American scholarships to study.
Then one of the senior pastors entered the conversations and told an interesting story. Years ago he and other pastors had visited the famous theologian Rousas J. Rushdoony and asked him the following question: “What is the primary thing that young pastors need to learn?” Rushdoony's answer surprised them: “Economics!”
Notice he did not say theology, family counseling, or church management, but economics. There is no other area of life so comprehensive as economy and business. In business you will find all of men’s talents working together in the most incredible ways – through management, relations, trust, systems of ethics, ambitions for the future, negotiations and persuasion, foresight, staffing, problem solving, responsibility, etc. Only through business can men learn the proper value and purpose in life – to serve others and change the world around them for the better.
We sincerely hope that by addressing business in this year’s conference, we can establish the proper foundation for a society focused on liberty, responsibility, and the future.