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Engaging in Generous Giving

by Michael Ford last modified 25 Jun, 2021 02:36 AM

Our Archdeacon Anthony has appealed to parishes to engage with the Diocese's Autumn Generous Giving Campaign.

Speaking to the June Synod held on Zoom in a debate around Fairer Share, The Ven Antony MacRow-Wood, told Synod members that no parish thinks their Share, the financial commitment each parish makes towards their ministry and mission costs, is truly fair:

"I’ve just been on an Archdeacon’s Conference and different dioceses have different systems, but my Archdeacon colleagues all say the same thing, whatever the system: 'The trouble with parish share is that nobody likes paying it.'

"Everyone assumes a new share system will result in their parish paying less, and that is not a realistic assumption because the same amount still needs to be raised."

Engaging in Generous Giving- Antony MacRow Wood, bottom right

But he said before we got into the undergrowth of exact calculations around Share payments, we needed to look at the bigger picture:

"The best thing will be for everyone to engage in the Generous Giving Campaign, because if that is a success and we restore our Diocesan finances to a healthy state, we can then revise the Fairer Share system from a strong and secure base."

The Generous Giving Campaign aims to help parishes to create a moment in the life of the local church when it can focus on transforming giving in response to God’s generosity, helping them plan for a more secure financial future in this post-Covid world we find ourselves in.

The campaign will provide a range of resources that churches can use, when they are able, to encourage a culture of sustainable giving in both church and community. (click here)

As a Diocese we believe that transforming giving and generosity is key to achieving the mission of the local church.

Generous giving from across the Diocese pays for our priests through the Share payments our parishes make, and it also pays to heat and light our buildings and can help to repair them. Generous giving can also fund all the important mission opportunities in our communities that are just waiting there for us to begin.

Archdeacon Antony told Synod:

"If the campaign is not a success and we have to lose clergy posts, then in order to calculate what we will save by losing a particular post, we will need to keep the revenue system essentially the same, until we have got on an even keel and our finances are stable.

"Otherwise, we risk losing a number of posts whilst changing the revenue system, and then finding we’ve saved no money at all, and those posts have been lost in vain.

"As I said, nobody likes paying Share, whatever system we adopt it will still be difficult to pay, and the assumption that changes will mean 'my parish pays less' is not very realistic because the same overall amount will need to be raised to pay for our parish clergy."

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