The Holy Spirit prompted me to do some research on GFA, and I was very disappointed with what I read has been going on with them. The red flag for us was that over the last few years we received very few letters from our sponsored dalit child through GFA's Bridge of Hope program, even after we would call or email inquiring about this. We were told that the staff would contact the program center and encourage the child to write to us. Upon looking back at our file of letters, at one point we did not receive any letters from the sponsored child for over a year. At the start of the sponsorship, we were informed that the child would be writing to us two to three times per year, but this did not happen. We can only hope and pray that all of this as well as everyone's donations were not in vain.
After giving over 100,000 dollars to this ministry over the course of 11 years, I must retract everything I held dear about them. Please Google Warren Throckmorton's blog to see what they have done to us - their big donors and volunteers. They have lied to Evangelicals to get their money. I was a volunteer for 9 years, and went to India with them, and have met KP twice. I ignored what I saw in India and wish I hadn't. I saw the best of intentions. Well now I realize the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I regret all the friends I dragged into this ministry. They may have started off with the Gospel being the focus, but now it is a way for KP to build his empire.
Sometimes ministries are under spiritual attack, other times ministries use the words spiritual attack as a cover for financial shenanigans. After serving at this ministry longer than I care to mention, and doing my own investigations into financial allegations and misappropriations of donor money, I finally saw the light and realized something fishy was going on. What a fool I was, and to think I brought my wife and all my kids along for this ride. God forgive me. I was like a frog in the frying pan, never realizing how things were becoming around me.
My information while on staff about Gospel for Asia financial issues came from Christian news reports and agencies like the ECFA. Some things also came up at a few staff meetings, I prayed about all this and found out more with what pastors had seen who had been to the field and former volunteers.
Take a look at some of the reports, do your homework, read the financial numbers of how much in cash reserves is in India under Believers Church and kp’s control.
from the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability Report 2015:
-Excessive cash balances held in partner field accounts.
Allegations were made that GFA had upwards of $150 million in partner field accounts, far more than necessary to provide appropriate operating reserves. During our visit on June 3, ECFA was informed that GFA field partner cash reserves were approximately $7 million. After ECFA requested detailed documentation of cash balances held by foreign field offices, on June 29, we discovered that GFA’s field partners had $259,437,098 on hand at March 31, 2014 and approximately $186 million in June 2015.
-Use of funds restricted for the field for other purposes.
On June 3, ECFA discussed GFA’s claim that 100 percent of field funds are sent and used in the field. GFA staff confirmed that this was accurate. On August 24, ECFA was informed that GFA India made a gift to GFA of $19,778,613 in 2013 to complete GFA’s new office.
On August 27, GFA’s staff confirmed that the funds relating to this donation were originally received by GFA as gifts restricted for the field and GFA transferred to field partners to fulfill donor restrictions.
Christianity Today article:
-GFA delayed sending nearly $50 million in donations to its overseas partners in 2014. The funds were not transferred overseas until the end of the year. GFA also delayed sending $28 million in donations overseas in 2015.
-GFA failed to keep track of how it spends designated funds for specific projects.
GFA’s leader, kp, repeatedly withheld information about the ministry’s finances from its -board of directors.
-$29 million dollars in donations was moved to the Hong Kong bank account of GFA's India affiliate without disclosing that transfer to the Indian government. GFA also hid financial transactions from both the Indian government and US officials.
-GFA failed to exercise control over millions of dollars in donations sent to its overseas affiliates.
Along with these reports there have been well over 60-70 staff and families that have left since 2015. Things have gotten paranoid inside the Wills Point campus. Leaders trying to listen in on conversations, a continual uncomfortable watchful eye. It’s become a locked and gated little world on the 300 acre campus in Wills Point, TX. All the empty campus houses are such a waste, of donor money. Staff who remain are either young with no place to go or just have been born into the ministry with no other view, and there are those who just don’t question KP and believe everything he says.
Things started to really make me wonder when an Indian staff person that I had known for years came to visit the office. They acted very strange when they were here and didn’t talk to staff, something was off.
Staff from other offices beyond the US have left, the leaders from the New Zealand office and also Bishops and many missionaries in India have left the ministry. No one will say anything about the real reasons the German office went away, it wasn’t just their age. God knows it wasn’t me leaving because of my age.
After all the many years it slowly changed and kp became the leader who was not to be questioned, who could question him when he spent half the time in India speaking his native tongue. No one from the US knew what was really going on as he built his high church and appointed himself Metropolitan. Some senior leaders at the US office have taken a vow to kp, for Believers Church. This small group does not question kp. You think they are going to spill the beans on how all the money has been handled, especially the $285,000 that somehow made it over to India in cash.
Don’t confuse the persecution of the church with the questions about how GFA has handled donor money. Donor, do your homework on who you give to.
Gospel For Asia, time has been under heavy attack from the enemy. The recent lawsuit, the allegations and blogs, etc., have caused a lot of churches including our own to become weary and skeptical. We have lost a lot of support in our area making it hard to share about the work of GFA, but despite this setback, God is still at work through this wonderful movement. Besides doing our own personal investigation into this mess, I had contacted many friends with questions for peace of mind and we decided not to hear from any one left from GFA but still decided to continue in this storm. Their words of faith and convictions encouraged us more than words can describe.
It wasn't long after that similar allegations were made against so many other ministries including Voice of the Martyrs . Proof that the enemy is trying to destroy these ministries from the inside. As with all ministries, I encourage you to stand with these ministries in prayer. We are still proactive in the work of both of these ministries and we stand with them. We encourage people to be careful with what they read or hear about on the internet and other sources until it's been investigated. We live in desperate times, and the enemy is hard at work in trying to stop the Great Commission through division in the Church.
I love the commitment of those serving with Gospel for Asia to the Lord Jesus. I have witnessed their love for Him firsthand in the staff, the leaders, and many missionaries on the field that I spent some time with. There's no doubt in my mind that my time and resources invested with GFA are bringing hope in Christ to those in Asia. As one missionary said, "it is not we who are doing ministry, but it is God who is doing ministry. All praise goes to Him!
I wrote a glowing report of this ministry a few years back when I was a student here (at the request of my leaders who were hoping to boost their ranking), but now I have to retract my words and say that I am just so saddened, disillusioned, and done with GFA. I really encourage donors to not just take my word or any of the other reviewer's words but to research this organization for themselves. Read the articles coming out from Christianity Today, talk to the former staff - almost half of the staff have left since I was a student in 2012. There is spiritual abuse, manipulation, and distortion of the truth going on at headquarters and unfortunately I left there having many skewed ideas of what godly spiritual leadership is, what true ministry looks like, transparency among believers, godly submission, etc, and I'm having to relearn and be retaught the whole context of certain scriptures that were taken out of context and used to manipulate staff and students alike. As missions director of my church, it has been difficult to not view Christian organizations with an exorbitant amount of skepticism and distrust after my two years with GFA. Thankfully, there are honest trustworthy organizations out there that arent perfect but definitely are doing more for the kingdom of God than this one.
many reputed christian organizations across US do not have affiliation with ECFA, yet they continue to build trust among their donors by the work that they are doing. i find GFA as one such organization which can continue to do God's work because of the inroads that it is making in the mission fields in India and across asian countries. I never knew anything about ECFA when I began my support
no matter who said what, I had my personal encounter with few staff and found the reasons for not spending a portion of amount or the balance accumulated since few years. I have all reasons to believe what I heard from them is true and I recommit to continue my support. Some reasons are absolutely true to believe as major part of the monie went to a difficult country like India and situation in India since year 2000 was not fair to implement many of their major project including church buildings. I prayerfully recommend all to pray and stay with GFA/Bridge of Hope
In terms of accountability ... if you are OK with a continued messaging of urgent financial need coming from GFA, yet at the same time GFA India (or Believers Church) not using significant portions of stockpiled millions of dollars of donor money for what it was given towards - say over the years 2010-2015, and you are OK with the ends justify the means ideology - than by all means, turn a blind eye to a little thing called integrity within christian ministry and continue to do whatever you want with your cash, after all - it really is God's money. And if you are OK with equipping numerous young students with $4500 in cash to take to India and not report the cash to either the US + India (or staff), yet the total cash per trip exceeded $10k per trip (over a two year period of doing this), and you're OK with transferring $19 million from India to US - to finish a US campus, then carry on. Yet if you care about accountability and integrity, you may want to weigh and pray about where you give to. It has been heartbreaking to to see the reality of all that has gone down with GFA - from termination from the ECFA, and the truth former board member Gayle Erwin revealed, it's a sad time for those who dedicated their lives to the work, especially after serving there over a decade. Over 50+ staff left in 2015, let that sink in. An article from Christianity Today sums up alot: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2015/december-web-only/report-details-why-gospel-for-asia-lost-ecfa-membership.html
Recommendation - pray for current staff.
in spite of all mess happening around, I had the privilege to talk to many field staff and visited few mission fields of GFA/BC/Bridge of Hopes and realized that my accountability to God and commitment need to be more stronger than what I read and hear. I found a group of sincere and hard working men and women of God need my prayer as well as support. I recommend with all my conscience.
If you are considering financially supporting Gospel for Asia or joining staff, DON'T DO IT. As of February 8, 2016, there has been a class action lawsuit filed against Gospel for Asia, KP (founder and leader), and several others in leadership at the ministry. There are multitudes of good reasons to avoid GFA, including the misuse of donors funds and emotional and spiritual abuse of the staff. Follow these links for more information:
I had to retract my previous glowing review of this ministry, as I no longer believe Gospel for Asia to be an effective ministry, if they are even to be considered a ministry at this point. I had volunteered with Gospel for Asia as a representative for over 10 years and had believed the Lord was using the ministry bring about salvation and to make many disciples of Christ. Unfortunately, I now know that I was deceived and in turn was used by the leaders of this ministry to deceive others through speaking on behalf of them and leading others to become donors, volunteers and staff.
It has been heart breaking to find out the truth of lies, frauds that have been perpetuated over the years by the GFA leaders. The name Gospel for Asia is certainly a lie and extremely misleading now with so many facts brought to light. ECFA has booted them and there has been much written and brought to light by former staff and others such as Warren Throckmorton. As it stands now, this is a for profit business that cares only for enlarging its business ventures and wealth. I'm writing this to warn others away from being deceived. Please stay away from Gospel for Asia. I would not be a good steward by staying involved with them and I would warn others from donating or volunteering. This is not a godly organization as it stands currently. I would encourage everyone with the means to get in touch with the leaders to call on KP Yohannan and the rest of the leaders to repent of their sins against God and His people. The lies and deceptions need to stop.
More information can be found here:
This is SHEEP FLEECING MONEY LAUNDERING CRIMINAL ENTERPRISE.
After serving for 12 years we had to move on. This organization is displaying cult like behavior. I would steer clear until they show repentance, and fix the many problems in leadership, spend down the millions they are holding in foreign accounts and have a board without family members on it.
Gospel for Asia now faces claims of abuse and deceit by more than 100 former staff. Now the ECFA has terminated their membership due to violations of 5 of their 7 areas of integrity, including truthfulness in communications.
Gospel for Asia leader KP Yohannan has been caught in many bold-faced lies, including saying he is not on any boards or trusts in India and has no legal control of entities there, when numberous public records show that he has full legal authority over Believers' Church, its assets, and other entities there.
See Warren Throckmorton's blog for more info, or the GFA Diaspora website.
(Photo attached shows ordained Believers' Church Father David Carroll sprinkling water on the cornerstone at the Texas campus dedication.)
Review from Guidestar
Before considering this charity, one should note that the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability voted to terminate GFA's membership due to violation of nearly all standards. Three pastor board members have resigned over the violations. Not recommended.
Review from Guidestar
Their lack of accountability and transparency in financial matters is of great concern! They have yet to deal with recent allegations and their loss of EFCA status! Donor beware!
Review from Guidestar
This travesty of an organization has, by my estimate, somewhere between 1/4 to 1/2 a Billion dollars missing. Those funds should have been wired to banks in India and reported to the Indian Government but never were. KP Yohannan has been caught lying to his staff about important details. Criminal complaints have been filed in two US states and in Canada. Three board members just resigned. One was quite clear that KP had lied to them and the ministry had failed all seven of the ECFA criteria for membership and had been terminated. Donor money intended for the poor and for evangelism have clearly instead been openly used to create businesses in KP's name. This is the largest scandal so far in church history considering GFA is the second largest missions organization in the World. For more details go to http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton/category/gospel-for-asia/
Review from Guidestar
I cannot recommend GFA as a reputable mission organization. As a former staff member, I believed wholeheartedly in the mission of GFA and served for 5 years. During my time on staff I noticed an increased amount of control being placed on individuals and families. More than once husbands were taught (in prayer meetings on Tuesday nights) that they must place ministry above their families and hold nothing back. The breaking point for me was when several staff were let go supposedly due to financial reasons but were not given any notice and were treated very poorly--immediately cut off from the ministry and staff. The lies were obvious for those who had personal relationships with the terminated staff. I also had concerns regarding the integrity of GFA in claiming 100% goes to the field and designations being honored. I made calls to thank donors for giving and more than a few times I was confronted by a donor with a discrepancy. One person who purchased a Jesus Well had requested information on where the well was placed. She received a photo and information. She donated again the following year and was sent the same exact picture and story when she asked about the location of the second well. My own church in Texas gave for Jesus Wells every year. GFA would send the church a report every now and then to share with the church. During one of these presentations, a photograph of a well was shown and a blurb about the island where it is located was read. The only problem is that I had previously visited that exact Well during my trip to India a year before. Any time I asked about the problems with these reports and the seeming false information being given, I was brushed off. If staff members who have questions can't get straight answers, who can? It was a known fact amongst those in marketing positions that Jesus Wells and bicycles were continually used as fundraising tools even though there was way more money sitting in those "accounts" than could be used in the upcoming years. I believe KP began the ministry with a great heart but got lost along the way. He refuses to repent for his unbiblical behavior and has brought along many of his top leaders with him. Find another organization to support.
We were a part of this organization for 7 years, and over that time noticed changes developing with which we were uncomfortable, such as focus on money instead of praying for the work on the field, elevating the importance of the ministry over the family, teaching to "not listen to an evil report" which meant not to talk to former staff and constant manipulative messages to "stay in the battle". The focus was seemingly on the Lord, but only because following Him was equated with staying at GFA.
Now I know many of my small pieces of the puzzle were only a fraction of the big picture of a ministry gone wrong, with many of the same destructive patterns of undue influence displayed by other manipulative groups.
I post this because I want to warn others away from coming to GFA, especially those students considering it. This is an UNHEALTHY SPIRITUAL ENVIRONMENT. To read more see www.gfadiaspora.com. Also read articles from Christianity Today, World Magazine and Patheos for details and concerns.