Worldwide Church of God Discloses Worker Layoffs

The Worldwide Church of God disclosed Tuesday another round of staff layoffs from its sprawling headquarters in Pasadena.

Employees were informed at an afternoon meeting that some of them would lose their jobs, but would not say how many. They were told they would be formally notified of their status within days. There are 342 full-time employees at the headquarters.

Another 239 full-time ministers serve congregations throughout the United States. There was no indication whether any of them would lose their jobs.

The cutbacks, announced by church treasurer Bernard W. Schnippert, indicate that there has been little or no change in the church’s precarious financial condition, first made public a year ago.

A year ago, the church cut 358 of its 700 employees at its landmark 56-acre headquarters. At the time, the church reported it was reeling from a 30% drop in income. Between 10% and 15% of its worldwide membership of 104,000 members had left.

The church attributed its problems to an exodus of disaffected ministers and members in the wake of major doctrinal changes that have brought the church’s teachings more in line with mainstream Protestant evangelical Christianity.

Schnippert also told employees that fewer workers would be needed when the headquarters is sold.