Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pastor’s Massive Pay Package Causes Lawsuit

Reverend Brad Braxton.

Dr Boyce Watkins

I read today about the financial compensation package of pastor Brad Braxton of the New Riverside Church in Manhattan.  Here is the breakdown of Braxton’s compensation:

  • $250,000 in salary.
  • $11,500 monthly housing allowance.
  • Private school tuition for his child.
  • A full-time maid.
  • Entertainment, travel and "professional development" allowances.
  • Pension and life insurance benefits.
  • An equity allowance for Braxton to save up to buy a home.
  • On top of that, Braxton immediately hired a new second in command at more than $300,000 a year.

    The total value of the package is estimated to be $600,000 per year. 

    All I can say is “wow”.  No disrespect to this man or his congregation, but he would NOT be preaching at my church.  What was most problematic about the church’s decision to give Braxton such a ridiculous compensation package was that they didn’t seem to clear it with the membership, many of whom are filing suit over Braxton’s pay. As a Finance Professor, I must admit that I personally become uncomfortable hearing men and women of God talking about money more than I do.  I must disagree with Rev. TD Jakes, who said that “Jesus is a product”.  Sorry brother, Nikes are a product.  Cheeseburgers are a product.  Jesus is a spirit that should lead us to pursue a good that is greater than our bank accounts.  I am not sure how many pastors agree with that assessment. 

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