In the alphabet soup of Anglican Land, ERD is Episcopal Relief and Development and ARDF is the Anglican Relief and Development Fund. ARDF has been out there in the blogsphere for the last week or so because it is at the ARDF meeting that Moderator Duncan announced that on December 3rd there will be the beginning of some new improved GAFCON province of North America (thats NIGPNA). GAFCON is of course the Global Anglican Future Conference held last summer which produced the Jerusalem Declaration which is the new proof text of pure and undefiled Anglicanism.
Since the word Anglican is not trademarked and the word Anglicanism is a reference to a rather wide range of theological sentiments that arose from the English experience of Christianity, damn near anybody who wants to can call themselves Anglican or tout the very best sort of Anglicanism. The trademark is getting a bit warn.
Relief and Development work:
Both ERD and ARDF are about doing good things in relief and development work. I want to underline that I believe both are engaged in relief and development work. But there are some differences.
ERD works with churches of the Anglican Communion and ecumenically, appeals to members of the Episcopal Church no matter their particular views on what counts as Anglicanism or Anglican, works in collaboration with Anglican Provinces and Diocese all over the world regardless of their particular views and with who ever wishes to work with them. ERD's mission statement is this:
"Episcopal Relief & Development is the compassionate response of the Episcopal Church to human suffering in the world. Hearing God's call to seek and serve Christ in all persons and to respect the dignity of every human being, Episcopal Relief & Development serves to bring together the generosity of Episcopalians and others with the needs of the world.
"Episcopal Relief & Development faithfully administers the funds that are received from the Church and raised from other sources. It provides relief in times of disaster and promotes sustainable development by identifying and addressing the root causes of suffering.
Episcopal Relief & Development cherishes its partnerships within the Anglican Communion, with ecumenical bodies and with others who share a common vision for justice and peace among all people."
ERD makes clear its financial statement on the website and has published a summary in its Annual Reports. ERD spent $25,000,000 on programs of relief and development last year.
I like ERD's clear financial statements and its mission statement and its involvement in large multi-denominational projects as well as ones implemented with partner churches in the Anglican Communion.
ARDF works with "The Global South," and with those who will not take monies from The Episcopal Church and is funded specifically through "North American Biblically based Anglicans" and directed to "Biblically based poor Anglican communities in the Global South." ARDF speaks of its funding standards, "Our standards for project funding are kept objective due largely to our partnership with independent philanthropic research service firms, who analyze each project expenditure with an investment mindset." So it does not fund efforts that cannot be measured. ARDF has raised $3,000,000 in it four years of existence.
ARDF's Mission statement is this:
"Anglican Relief & Development Fund (ARDF) provides effective and efficient relief and development assistance for objective high impact projects with measurable transformational results. ARDF exists to maximize life change in some of the most challenging parts of the Anglican Communion in the Global South adhering to the biblically based Anglican tradition."
The reader may be puzzled by the reference for "adhering to the biblically based Anglican tradition." It could be a reference to ARDF's own adherance, but the immediate noun cluster is "the most challenging parts of the Anglican Communion in the Global South," that is ARDF is funding actions in churches adhering to the biblically based Anglican tradition."
ARDF does an interesting analysis of how monies are spent, indicating how much is spend in a project on each individual helped.
ARDF's web pages give bits and pieces of a financial picture - how much is spent on particular projects and how much has been raised since the inception of the Fund, but as far as I can find there is no "financials" page similar to the ERD page. The ARDF annual report does not carry a financial summary page. ( I am sure someone will point out to me where to get that financial information on the web if it is there.)
I like ARDF's use of the Geneva Report form that tells about the extent to which programs fulfilled their expectations. ARDF has easy to read project proposals.
But the big difference concerns who is helping and who is helped: ERD has no litmus test about "biblically based" Anglican funding. ARDF does. ERD funds projects around the world with churches that agree with TEC and those who disagree both. ARDF takes into the world of Relief and Development the stance of its source community, the Anglican Communion Network and the Common Cause Partnership. That stance is that ACN and CCP are like minded with churches in the Global South who are biblically based Anglicans. Thus ARDF funds its friends, and its friends only.