Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty (Acts 6:3).
If we have sown spiritual things among you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? … Do you not know that those who are employed in the temple service get their food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in the sacrificial offerings? In the same way, the Lord commanded that those who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel (1 Corinthians 9:11-14).
At times, groups discover those in their midst who are serving the church community and also earning a living (Paul made tents, remember) beyond what should be reasonably expected in a 24 hour day. At the recommendation of a Summit Fellowship, such a brother or sister may receive support from their fellowship community and from others who want to help. For that purpose, the Summit Fellowships (the network of participating groups) may agree to provide the infrastructure to help that happen. In other words, the network can receive tax-deductible funds on behalf of faithful workers who have been recognized by their fellowship community.
In addition, some groups have determined that there are those in their midst that they wish to recognize as “official ministers” in the eyes of the civil authorities. This usually happens so that an individual is authorized to perform weddings. As a recognized religious organization, The Summit Fellowships can “license” ministers for such purposes.
In these kinds of situations, a fellowship with a history of relationship in the local church, can make a written request to the Summit Fellowships representatives who can then acknowledge the request and keep a record of it.
- The network of churches does not guarantee compensation — the Summit Fellowships has no employees — it merely provides a means for funds, up to a predetermined amount, to be received and distributed.
- If a fellowship authorizes someone to perform weddings and such, it should be understood that such authority doesn’t confer what are called “clergy benefits” for tax purposes.
- Such benefits may be authorized by special agreement among the Summit Fellowships.
- The above arrangements are reviewed by the Summit reps every two years and extended at the request of the members of the Summit where the worker is in fellowship.