Thursday, June 15. 2006
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Interesting to see that they want to borrow $ 500,000 for a line of credit, instead of just the amount needed to pay the overdue accounts.
Even more interesting is that there has been no disclosures of what happened on the meetings. Even more interesting is that no one has said we were wrong, and we need help to pay back debits that we should have paid. I am sure that if the truth was known and presented with enough resignations and retirements, that the people of the Church would be more than generous and probably reduce the amount needed to pay.
A request for funds and the truth of the whole affair would probably produce more than enough to pay the bills, and what is needed without taking out a loan for more than is needed.
We have heard many "Quotes" from Scripture, but no one has told the truth about what and why the money has been spent in the past, as well as the misuse of funds in monies donated to the Church, that were from ADM.
#1 Anonymous on 2006-06-15 17:37
The $500,000 line of credit is being paid back with the money procured from the loan. They are NOT obtaining a new line of credit.
#1.1 Michael Geeza on 2006-06-17 09:06
I would like to see in the Treasurer’s report what money was acquired through the sale of the property of the new acquired monastery “Under the Metropolitan's Omophorion” in South Miami. Photos were taken with the present Metropolitan at the monastery run school. Then monies were requested in letters to parishes for the school. Then shortly after the monies were asked, the school closed. The monastics were asked to be in a public court murder trial. One of their members was given 30 years for murdering the female treasurer of the school. The assistant public defender Edith Georgi had a lot of questions for these newly accepted into the OCA clergy they refused to answer.
What was the financial outcome of their move to any other state this year? How does the murder conviction of their member and the unanswered questions of Edith Georgi effect the insurance policy of the OCA administration as “Under the Omophorion”? How does the statement of the former OCA Chancellor Robert Kondratick and his report, “we saw nothing wrong”, effect confidence and trust in the OCA administration? Who and how did the money change hands in this transaction? And why did it all happen any way? Place this acquisition of protected property in the timeline in question and ask more questions is what I advise.
#2 Matushka Carol on 2006-06-15 23:10
Well, there it is....Who stole the cash? given what I've been reading, all this must have been known to Kondratick and to some greater or lesser extent by Theodosius.
This list shows money that has been swiped to pay for other things. Honesdale Bank will cover the loss by having a first mortgage on the Syosset Chancellory property and the marin Drive House. Not a bad deal for Honesdale if there is a default, right? and there may well be a default considering everything that has happened.
$14,300 every month for years to cover the following:
Commerce Bank Line of Credit — 500,000
FOS Endowments — 42,880
Other Endowments - Smith Barney Main Acct. — 85,000
Chechen Relief — 30,000
Medical Assistance for clergy — 13,000
Outstanding All-American Council Expenses — 140,000
Outstanding Invoices — 287,800
Mission Appeal — 87,560
Seminary Appeal — 151,940
Charity Appeal — 41,750
Christmas Stocking Project — 16,600
9/11 Emergency Funds — 90,590
Beslan Relief — 34,640
Florida Hurricane Relief — 13,920
IOCC Appeal — 3,300
Publication Reserve — 27,500
Academic Fellowship Fund — 52,800
Seminary Internship Fund — 7,960
Military Chaplain Reserve — 270
Earmarked Funds: 4 Russian Orphanages — 25,000
Closing Expenses/Miscellaneous Expenses — 47,490
Other information concerning the Rate of Interest, Terms of Payment, Maturity, Prepayment Privilege and Security which were contained in the letter were the following:
3. The Rate of Interest will be 7.97% for the first 48 months of the mortgage from the closing date. It will have an interest rate floor of 7%
4. Repayment will be made in monthly installments of $14,300.00 applied first to interest and then to principle. On the 49th month, the rate of interest may change to the following:
A New York Prime interest rate plus .25% for the next 12 month period and a new payment shall be calculated to amortize the balance over the remaining term and shall readjust every 12th month thereafter for the term of the loan.
5. The loan shall mature on the 240th month following the date of the closing, at which time all outstanding principal plus interest, if any shall be due and payable and any amount then due and owing.
6. The Borrower shall have the privilege on any installment payment date to prepay the unpaid principal indebtedness in whole or in part without payment of premium or penalty; no such prepayment to alter the amount of the aforesaid monthly installments.
7. The loan shall be secured with first mortgages on the two properties owned free and clear by The Orthodox Church in America, namely the chancery building and property and the home owned by the Church, both of which are in Syosset.
Well there you have it...A very neat swindle to be paid for by the faithful of the OCA.
- Robert Zacher
#3 Robert Zacher on 2006-06-16 09:12
I really wish the OCA would spare me the rhetoric. No financial institution lends money based on how respected an individual appears to them. They do it for the money. Almost 8% is a steal for the bank on a secured loan. Prime + 1/4 reflects the bank's belief that the OCA won't be able to cover after four years. Note that prime is already 8% so that after four years the payments and interest due are sure to increase. The bank must surely realize that before defaulting on this loan the OCA would sell off property to cover.
If someone could do the math for me I'd love to see how the OCA will be able to cover $14,000+ a month based off of contributions from its members. This $14,000 is in addition to its normal expenses which, if I read correctly, have left the OCA in a deficit for a number of years. So the Metropolitan Council is telling me that with declining membership, a church scandal, a new $14,000 monthly bill they will be able to balance the budget for 2006?
The numbers do not lie, that much is true. I am not sure that I can believe anything more than the numbers right now and after reading the 6/16 announcement it will be a long time for my faith to be restored.
#4 Kevin on 2006-06-17 05:21
Where has all the money gone, long time passing?
Where has all the money gone, long time ago? Where has all the money gone, long time passing?
When will we ever know?
When will we ever know?
I am watching here as everyone else.
The Treasurer's report is not answering, Where is the missing money?
This morning I thought of this question in terms of the Kingston Trio folk melody, "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"
I share it with you.
#5 Matushka Carol on 2006-06-17 05:23
Get a loan to pay back money stolen from donations for 9/11, Beslan relief, and a Christmas stocking project to name a few. How sad is that? Where do you send money for 9/11 now? What about the families in Beslan? When will they just come clean and admit what they did?
#6 Katie on 2006-06-17 05:52
I for one think it is commendable that somebody has finally stepped up to the plate, acknowledged that monies never reached their intended destinations for whatever reason, and that the "cookie jar" is now being replenished.
The funds will finally be turned over to their rightful recipients.
Would we rather have the central church administration simply acknowledge that funds are missing and say, it's too bad that the rightful recipients can't benefit because of our financial mess?
#6.1 Michael Geeza on 2006-06-17 17:40
I think if I were one of the long time clergy of the oca in the pension plan I would be asking questions related to what was in his pension account. Parishes in good faith may be paying into the pension benefit as part of the benefits offered to their clergy. This money may not be making it to where it is supposed to be going. What a shame it would be for a priest to retire and end up with next to nothing as the result of this.
#7 JJ on 2006-06-17 15:40
Dear Acting Treasurer, Fr. Kucynda,
I am worried about the children of Beslan.....
If $90,000. was collected in September 2002, why do we need to borrow $34,640 to replenish this fund? What happened to the balance?
Did it go into Fr. Kondratick's pocket or into Archimandrite Zacchaeus' pocket?
Or was Fr.K acting on orders from a superior?
If so, who?
Met. Herman has apparently heard the "tape" of the conversation between Fr. K and Fr. Z and called it damaging. What was in it? Damaging to whom?
None of these questions have been answered in your report. All we are told is that we need to borrow money to replenish the missing funds - missing from the Beslan fund and from many other funds.The payments will be $14,000/month!
As Acting Treasurer, do you actually believe that the faithful of the OCA will meekly hand over MORE MONEY, (money they have already donated once) unless the adminstration is more forthcoming? Unless mistakes are admitted, beyond "sloppy bokkkeeping"? Unless audits and legal investigations are made public as promised?
It is a number of years since the appeal...the children of Beslan will soon be grown up before this mess is straightened out.
Lord have mercy!
#8 Eugenie Osmun on 2006-06-18 11:02
You stated exactly what my husband and I were talking about over the weekend regarding the faithful being asked to hand over MORE MONEY to pay back what was already stolen. I'd love to see the cover letter accompanying the check to the families in Beslan or, for that matter, the families of the 9/11 victims. How about Christmas Stocking Fund? Pitiful.
#8.1 Katie on 2006-06-19 12:59
I have an interesting question. I have been told that the Chancery property was given to the OCA with the stipulation that the property would revert to the estate of the donor if the OCA sold the property. Now if we default on the loan would the property not revert to the estate of the donor? If we default, the bank would get the property? I wonder if the bank has completed the title search and if so, if they will still offer the loan.
#9 withhold name on 2006-06-19 07:35
The numbers trouble me, because we are God's stewards and are invested in what has been given.
What really troubles me, is the concept of the "financial scandal" being used as a "RED Herring". What really are the issues? ...
Why has the Metropolitan Council allowed replenishment of funds from a loan where receipts are still not appearing? What Best Practices are being followed or any honorable transaction occuring with NO RECEIPTS?
We are called to be "fisher's of men". Why are our nets not overflowing? We are more like "fish traders", trading one jurisdiction...changing who are the numbers within a diocese. I smell rotten things, I see a thick smoke screen over a clerical roulette game.
I say again, "NO MORE".
Father John Nehrebecki is polite when he states 'business as usual'. Having observed the "raw emotions' of another respected Diocesan Dean and former Chancellor when I would drive him to and from the Miami airport to attend the New York held Metropolitan Council meetings, he had a high percent of indignation and resolve when he would return about how we would practice things here. Monies, collections for special appeals were regularly skimmed, or as Fr. Nehrebecki says,"business as usual," in his reflection.
Women are not going to be clergy candidates, maybe that's why we are more inclined like Faith Skordinski to give voice. Woman by percent are still the majority of workers, fundrasiers and donors in many parishes. We can be the voice to say, "No". I urge it on every level.
Borrowing money with no receipts for missing funds is not an acceptable practice. "Best Practices" is more smoke.
More letters, open letters and mailed ones should be written and collectively signed by sisterhoods, and charitable groups sayng "NO LOAN".
"Let's see the receipts."
#10 Matushka Carol on 2006-06-20 18:42
Please do not put our children of the future church of America in debt with a huge loan... SELL SYOSSET and a few other lurious houses which are deluding our Bishops. Move the governance of the Chruch back to the woods of Penn and live on the parking lot of the seminary in trailers as a humble hermit should. All the Chruches of Russia and Greece will not think less of us.... and tell the truth about our shrinking membership in America. 26,000 of us are just too few to support the loans, the fraud, the lawyers and the lack of charachter of the past. Begin ..... a-new.... repent and forgive, by returning to the ancient ways and finding peace for our souls.
#11 Theodore on 2006-06-27 16:34
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