¶ 820. The Advance-1. The Advance for Christ and His Church (hereafter referred to as the Advance) is an official program within The United Methodist Church through which support may be designated for projects approved by the Advance Committee of the Connectional Table. (See ¶ 1310.3b.)
2. A general Advance Special Gift is a designated financial contribution made by an individual, local church, organization, district, or conference to a project authorized for this purpose by the Advance Committee.
a) Gifts as Advance Specials may be made for specific projects or purposes authorized by the Advance Committee.
b) Gifts as Advance Specials may be made for broadly designated causes (such as a type of work, a country, or a region) or for use as block grants to a certain country or administrative unit, provided such causes are authorized by the Advance Committee. In such case the administering agency shall provide the donor with information about the area to which the funds have been given and, where practicable, establish communication with a person or group representative of that type of work.
c) Rather than being given to a specific project, an Advance Special Gift may be given to the following designated programmatic units of the General Board of Global Ministries: Evangelization and Church Growth Program Area, Community and Institutional Ministries Program Area, Mission Contexts and Relationships Program Area, Mission Personnel Program Area, United Methodist Committee on Relief, and such other agencies as were designated by the General Council on Ministries. In such cases the agency shall determine the Advance Special project(s) to which such a gift shall be allocated, inform the donor where the gift has been invested, and, as far as practicable, establish communication between donor and recipient.
3. Funds given and received as a part of the general Advance shall be subject to the following conditions:
a) Churches and individuals shall give priority to the support of the World Service Fund and conference benevolences and other apportioned funds. Advance giving shall be voluntary and in addition to the support of apportioned funds.
b) Funds shall be solicited or received only for authorized projects. Programs and institutions having general Advance Special projects shall promote only the projects approved and shall ask that gifts be remitted in the manner described in ¶ 820.4 below.
c) Funds received through the Advance shall be used solely for project support and are not to be used for administration or promotional costs.
d) Advance Special Gifts shall not be raised as a part of a fund apportioned by an annual conference. (For conference Advance
Special Gifts, see ¶ 654.)
e) Upon receipt of funds for a general Advance Special, each administering agency shall communicate promptly with the donor, acknowledging receipt of the gift and suggesting avenues for communication if communication has not already been established.
4. Receipts for general Advance Specials shall be remitted by the local church treasurer to the conference treasurer, who shall make remittance each month to the participating agencies in a manner determined by the treasurer of the General Council on Finance and Administration. Individuals may remit directly to respective agencies in a manner determined by the treasurer of the General Council on Finance and Administration, with these remittances reported to the annual conference treasurer by the respective agencies.