MB Foundation’s 2019 annual report shows unprecedented growth for the second year in a row. Assets increased by 22 percent, reaching a 2019 year-end total of $251 million. The previous year tallied a 12 percent increase and ended with $200 million in assets.
“We were blessed at the end of 2018 to go over the $200 million mark,” says Jon C. Wiebe, president and CEO. “To achieve such a large increase in 2019 is extraordinary.”
A theme of “Strengthening the Local Church” was adopted for 2019, inspired by Acts 9:31.
Several key components factored into the strong year. The first factor was a nearly $10 million increase in investment certificates. Investment Certificates allowed MB Foundation’s 782 investors to earn a rate of return and also provide capital for the loan program. The loan portfolio finished the year at $84.7 million and provided funding to churches, organizations and individuals.
One ministry which benefited in 2019 was Lighthouse Church of Denver, Colorado. Through a partnership with the Southern District Conference and MB Foundation, Lighthouse Church was able to purchase an indoor soccer facility and transform it into their new worship center. With the help of 7,000 volunteer hours, the facility was purchased and converted in just three months.
“The greatest gift this building has given us is an open door to the diversity of our community,” says Josh Shaw, Lighthouse Church lead pastor. “We have always had a desire to look like our neighborhood for the sake of the Kingdom of God.”
Another growth factor in 2019 was the contribution of $19.5 million by donors for the benefit of charities. MB Foundation acts as a conduit for charitable contributions, facilitating gifts on behalf of donors. In 2019, distributions of $4,728,631 were made to 344 different charities, including $1,063,929 to Mennonite Brethren churches.
A third component to the growth was the strong market performance leading to the standard endowment investment portfolio returning 18.58 percent. The portfolio logged its best annual return since 2009. All major asset classes contributed to the strong performance.
“MB Foundation is privileged to partner with donors and investors who have the same objective and want to see the local church strengthened,” says Wiebe.
Additional highlights that provided strength for local churches included:
- an annual gift to support USMB in the amount of $180,000,
- LeadGen scholarships to future leaders at 11 different churches,
- hosting Celebrate 2019!, an event for 221 boomers, builders and empty nesters from 36 MB churches and
- opening an office in Fresno, California, at Starpoint Towers located at 6th & Shaw, as an expanded commitment to serve the west coast constituency.
The full 2019 Annual Report can be viewed at www.mbfoundation.com/2019annualreport.