Nothing burns me like hearing that leaders of various Christian ministries are living the big life in big houses with fast cars and swimming pools all paid for by the donations of regular folks.
These men and women get a television or radio show and start taking large salaries or get houses and cars subsidized. The justification is that they'd be making much more in the secular world.
My response: Guess what, good Christian? You are supposedly engaging in a ministry and that entails certain sacrifices. More is expected of you and you are supposed to expect less for yourself.
The latest article in the series of disappointments focuses on Jay Sekulow:
But there is another side to Jay Sekulow, one that, until now, has been obscured from the public. It is the Jay Sekulow who, through the ACLJ and a string of interconnected nonprofit and for-profit entities, has built a financial empire that generates millions of dollars a year and supports a lavish lifestyle -- complete with multiple homes, chauffeur-driven cars, and a private jet that he once used to ferry Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
That less-known side of Sekulow was revealed in several interviews with former associates of his and in hundreds of pages of court and tax documents reviewed by Legal Times. Critics say Sekulow's lifestyle is at odds with his role as the head of a charitable organization that solicits small donations for legal work in God's name.
For example, in 2001 one of Sekulow's nonprofit organizations paid a total of $2,374,833 to purchase two homes used primarily by Sekulow and his wife. The same nonprofit also subsidized a third home he uses in North Carolina.
At various times in recent years, Sekulow's wife, brother, sister-in-law, and two sons have been on the boards or payrolls of organizations under his control or have received generous payments as contractors. Sekulow's brother Gary is the chief financial officer of both nonprofit organizations that fund his activities, a fact that detractors say diminishes accountability for his spending.
In his defense, he points out that he could be billing $750 an hour at a private firm. If the money is what you value, then go get it in the private sector. Stop the direct mailings and the big appeals to people struggling the pay the mortgage. They don't know too little goes to cover the cases, while too much goes into your residence.