US Christian family charity issues fundraising plea

US Christian group Focus on the Family has issued a special fundraising plea following a “serious budget shortfall”.

Spokesman Gary Schneeberger says the organisation is about $6 million short to balancing its $138 million budget for the fiscal year that began October 2008.

Jim Daly, president and CEO of the Colorado-based evangelical ministry, explained the challenges in a letter to approximately 800,000 donors. He wrote, “Right now we're facing a serious budget shortfall that threatens our ability to reach out to parents, families and married couples who count on our help.

“Income is down nearly $6 million from what we expected and planned for this year. I want to assure you that we're committed to good stewardship and living within our means, just as so many families are today.”

The shortfall has contributed to the organisation’s decision to cede control of its ‘Love Won Out’ conferences about homosexuality to another religious organisation, a spokesman said Tuesday.

‘Love Won Out’ conferences have in the past been staged across the country to help “men and women dissatisfied with living homosexually understand that same-sex attractions can be overcome”.

Exodus International, a network of ministries that promotes “freedom from homosexuality through the power of Jesus Christ”, will now take over the nationwide conferences starting in November.