Once Upon Internal Control: The Cartoon – chapter 1, bank reconciliations

A cartoon that discusses some internal controls over bank reconciliations in a local church:


The cartoon is based on the book Once Upon Internal Control – A tale of good and bad ways to implement internal controls in a local church, written by James Ulvog, CPA.

If you want more detail, the video above is based on the following selection from the book:

Southside Community Church

Both churches were looking for a bookkeeper at the same time. The leadership at Southside Community Church was pleased to get an experienced bookkeeper on board quickly.

Her life journey had been rough—lots of emotional scars. She was relieved during the interview when the church did not dwell on the details about her life B.C.—you know, before Christ. She was a relatively young Christian. She did not know a lot about the Bible, but she knew she had been forgiven much and she was grateful much. She was absorbing everything she could.

A week after the first month-end, she knew the bank reconciliations needed to be done. However, the statements had not arrived in the office. How odd, she thought. The delay in delivery was explained when the treasurer called to ask about a check that had cleared the previous month. She looked up the information, pulled the invoice, and gave him details on the disbursement. Two days later the treasurer delivered the bank statements to the church office.

She finished the bank reconciliations in short order and filed them away. A few days later, the office manager stopped by the finance office and asked to see the reconciliations. The bookkeeper pulled them and gave them to the office manager. A few minutes standing in the doorway was sufficient time to browse the reconciliations. She handed them back to the bookkeeper with a cheery thanks.

Paying bills took a bit longer than at her previous jobs. When the checks were ready, she called the treasurer and waited for him to stop by the office. Sometimes it took extra days for a particular check because she had to get a second signature from an elder for large amounts.

Copyright © 2008 James L. Ulvog

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