- Money Issues
- Why do people give
- Where does the money go
- Correcting the media
- Belgium Parliament
- New Zealand Herald
- Netherlands TV
- The Independent
- The Newstatesman Magazine
- Walthamstow Guardian
- Bishop Macedo
- Church purchases
Funding for The Universal Church comes from regular and one-time donations from members and visitors. No one is under any obligation to give a donation to The Universal Church. Pastors of the UCKG teach that offerings are first and foremost voluntary. In most churches, tithes and offerings are asked for during each service. It’s presented as an act of faith that God promised to honor.
Members and visitors who contribute are moved to do so because of God’s promises to those who give, their wish to honor Him, and their desire to help the work of God.
People, who continually give to God in The Universal Church, do so because they experience results and positive changes in various areas due to their act of faith. As they give they honor God’s word which promises to bless those who give with much more. But if this promise of God was annulled or proven fruitless all givers would have then discontinued and the Church wouldn’t exist today.
All donations are used to cover Church expenses such as mortgages/rent, utilities, repairs, TV programs and other media outreach, UCKG organized community services, Pastor’s stipend, new church buildings and other means of evangelism.
The church's finances are independently audited every year.
There have been false and/or misleading statements and articles about The Universal Church in the media. The Church takes these cases very seriously and does not hesitate to take legal action to correct false information. We urge members of the press to contact the church with any questions before publishing their stories.
In 2005, The Universal Church took an unprecedented legal action against the Belgium Parliament and won. The lawsuit was in respect to damaging and inaccurate allegations made in a parliamentary investigation.
The Court ruled: "The Court of Appeal in Brussels has, on the basis of its judgment of 28 June 2005 ruled that the text of the report of the parliamentary committee of enquiry on policies in the fight against illegal activities by sects and their danger for society and individuals in particular minors with reference to The Universal Church of the Kingdom of God was drawn up in a careless manner and that it is to be regarded as an error."
The UCKG’s good reputation is seen as a top priority within the church. The actions were essential to set the record straight for the benefit of people who seek solace and practical support from the UCKG in Belgium, Holland and across Europe.
The New Zealand Herald retracted libelous words in 2005 directed toward Bishop Macedo and the UCKG. The degrading article's sole purpose was to mislead readers with untrue facts about the church, its representatives, and beliefs.
In view of the distorted information and poor example of journalism, the church in New Zealand engaged a legal team to correct the situation. In a formal letter, the newspaper admitted their error and published a three hundred word response on July 24, 2005.
In March 2004, in Rotterdam, Netherlands, RNN7 a television channel claimed to possess information that would prove that the Church is involved in criminal activities.
When RNN7 was asked to produce such evidence, all they were able to show were very old press articles containing accusations that had already been proven untrue. One of the documents clearly stated that the accusations had to be rectified.
The judge found the UCKG not guilty and said that RNN7 had overstepped the limit. They are now forbidden to speak against, or about, the UCKG, and will be fined if they do. RNN7 also had to pay $14,000 for all legal expenses.
In August 2000 The Independent Newspaper published an article in which false allegations were made against the UCKG and its founder, Bishop Macedo. The article claimed, in an extremely denigrating tone, that the UCKG had links with the Colombian drug trade, and that Bishop Macedo had been in prison for fraud.
The UCKG in the UK felt strongly about the false allegations and decided to take legal action in view of the abhorrent charges.
The newspaper accepted that the impression the article had given was wrong and that it owed the Bishop an apology. It paid legal costs of $16,000.00
A political magazine in Britain, the Newstatesman, published an article where false allegations were made about the UCKG.
The Church was referred to as a religious sect and cult and that it was linked to the Victoria Climbie child abuse case. Refusing to tolerate such lies, the UCKG took immediate action and the magazine agreed to publish a clarification in its very next issue.
"We have repeatedly made clear; the Church was not involved in any way in the tragic death of Victoria Climbie, who visited our church with her aunt on just two occasions."
Another newspaper who attempted to taint the name of the UCKG was the Walthamstow Guardian, who published an article where false accusations were made about the UCKG and one of its Pastors.
Again the UCKG decided to take legal action. Following the action, the newspaper agreed to publish a clarification letter and paid legal costs in excess of $ 6,000.00.
Bishop Edir Macedo, the church founder, has been a target of false allegations and accusations
In 1992 in Brazil, accusations led to Bishop Macedo being arbitrarily imprisoned for 11 days on erroneous charges. The matter ended in his release, and charges against him were never proven. It is felt within the Church that this action was politically motivated. To put this in context, unjustified persecution of innocent Christians for political reasons has been a feature of the last 2000 years in history.
A jet owned by The Universal Church is another cause for frequent questions and accusations, against Bishop Macedo and the Church. Bishop Macedo does not own any jets, The Universal Church does.
The aircraft is used to enable the Church to oversee its operation. Being able to travel quickly has been an important factor in the rapid growth of the Church in over 130 countries for emergencies or regular visits.
The word 'exorcist' is defined as 'one who employs a formula of conjuration for the expulsion of evil spirits.’ A mix of faith with superstition, it was thought that evil spirits could only be cast out using these "magical" ceremonies.
The UCKG neither follows nor practices any such ceremonies or superstitions.
Following the Lord Jesus’ instruction to pray for people’s spiritual freedom, the UCKG offers deliverance prayers against evil/negativity, which includes feelings of guilt, failure, inadequacy, depression, lack of self-esteem and so on. The results are significant, especially to those who persevere and ultimately give their lives to God.
The UCKG does not claim to heal people but believes that God can heal through the power of faith. Its Tuesday healing services offer prayers for congregants who may be experiencing physical illness.
The Church does not have medical expertise, so people who present themselves at the Church with an illness are advised to seek a medical diagnosis from their doctor. Furthermore, anyone claiming to have been healed by God while attending the UCKG is invariably referred to their doctor because the Church only recognizes healing that has been confirmed by a qualified medical practitioner.
A cult is generally understood to be an informal and transient religious or quasi-religious belief system regarded by others as misguided or unorthodox.
Therefore, by definition the UCKG cannot be and never was a cult. It is part of the mainstream Pentecostal movement which is a legitimate Christian organization.