Parish Finance Report 2015
What follows is a summary of the presentations made at last weekend’s Masses by Sharon Gillott and Mike Kenny of the Parish Finance committee.
The first thing to say is to acknowledge that our parish finances are generally in reasonable shape and the parish is, as the accountants would say, “washing its face”, that is, it is, on the whole, living within its means. So that is good news.
But we must not be complacent, and as we move towards the silver jubilee of this fine church, which is only two years away, there are several things to consider:-
1. The current cost per week to run the parish is just under £1400, based on figures to the end of March this year. That covers all day to day expenditure on people, plant, equipment, heating, lighting etc. That equates to an annual cost of just over £72000.
2. The equivalent income figure, again based on figures to the end of March this year, is £1500 per week, annually just under £79000 for the year.
3. So you can see that we are currently paying our way. However, that is not the whole story:-
4. Our current average weekly Mass attendance is 419. 110 parishioners have envelopes, but only 92 are using them at present on a regular basis. Another 64 pay through Standing Order. Additionally, about £425 per week is collected in cash – so almost one third of our weekly income. Out of all these contributions 120 are Gift Aided at present, meaning that the parish can recover another 25 percent from HMRC. There is scope here for further income from anyone who has not yet Gift Aided their contributions, so if you are one of those and you pay tax, please get a form from Fr Nigel and make your payments to the Church go further at no extra cost to you. If you are at present not using envelopes, please join the scheme. Better still, make a Standing Order if you can, then you need not worry about catching up with weekly contributions you may have missed.
5. This building will be 25 years old in 2017. It is a wonderful facility, both as a place of worship and a social centre for the parish, but it is approaching the age at which major repairs and refurbishment can be expected. The roof, in particular (and as you know there is a lot of it) is likely to need attention, together with other repairs which have already been identified but not yet carried out.
We as a parish need to raise funds to ensure we have reserves to meet the Big Ticket items that are surely coming our way.
We also need to be aware that each year, in common with all parishes, we have to pay an amount to the Diocese to contribute to general Diocesan expenditure. That figure at present is around £28,000 . We have a historical credit balance with the Diocese of about £70 thousand arising from the sale of St Joseph’s Crofton out of which the assessment is currently supported, but of course that will not last for more than another few years.
6. So it is important that we look ahead and make provision for the future. And the future is largely in our hands as a community of the present to make sure that our guardianship of our church cannot be accused of neglect by communities of the future. This is our responsibility, more than the diocese, more than the Parish Priest for the time being.
7. At present we are living within our means, but we have little provision for the rainy days which undoubtedly will come. Please consider your contributions to the parish and see whether you could increase them. Please join the envelope scheme if you have not already. Please make a Standing Order if you can and, if you are a tax payer please Gift Aid your payments.