Christ the King-Epiphany Church is a financially sound congregation. In our first year as a merged Episcopal-Lutheran congregation, we finished the year in the black. As we began 2020 we had a solid pledge commitment from many parishioners and an expectation of solid giving from some parishioners that give but choose not to pledge. As we ended 2020 many of those parishioners that pledged met or exceed their pledge. The non-pledgers did not meet our expectations but their giving approximated 75% of the projected total.
During 2019, we supplemented our investments with the Diocesan Trustees through the addition of funds obtained from the sale of the Church of the Epiphany Rectory and their church building. Additional funds were deposited with the Trustees when Epiphany’s sponsored summer feeding program, Food, Friends and Fun was discontinued due to several consecutive years of reduced utilization after several for-profit food service companies began providing similar services. All of the program’s equipment was donated to requesting churches and non-profit organizations in support of their continuing ministries.
The outlook for 2021 is somewhat less positive but not concerning. Our pledge campaign saw a reduction in the number of pledges and in total giving. We attribute this reduction due primarily to the economic impact of the pandemic on some parishioners, the fact that we are not physically meeting together, several deaths, several relocations and some parishioners have decided to direct some of their giving to other local ministries and non-profits that are serving the nutritional and housing needs of the less fortunate.
The endowments of each congregation were modest prior to us becoming a merged congregation. As a result of the generosity of several former parishioners we have two scholarship funds one for an elementary school student with an active interest in music and the second is shared with St. Cecilia Roman Catholic Church-Wilbraham for a student from either congregation pursuing a career in healthcare.
With the sale of the Epiphany Rectory a Clergy Housing Fund was created to support the housing needs of our clergy. Proceeds from the closure of the summer feeding program are designated for mission outreach. The remaining funds: Christ the King’s Thrivent Financial Pastor’s Housing Allowing Fund, Epiphany’s Prothero, Carey, Building Sale Fund and the Rainy Day Fund are all unrestricted. The Rainy Day Fund was accessed late in 2019 to pay Epiphany’s portion of the re-paving of the Christ the King parking lot, the installation of new parking lot security lights and the removal, re-assembly, up-grade and re-installation of Epiphany organ’s to Christ the King. Since then all of our endowment funds have been re-invested except for scholarship payouts.
We began 2020 with a very positive annual giving campaign. Using The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS) materials we received 56 pledge commitments with a total giving of $198,304.We also projected additional income of $25,000 from parishioners that elected to not make a financial pledge commitment but have historically made donations throughout the prior year. As mentioned previously, this latter group contributed approximately 75% of that projection. We finished the year in the black due to excellent giving, reduced expenses and diocesan help through the Payroll Protection Plan.
The 2021 Stewardship campaign resulted in 50 pledges totaling $164,914 and we are projecting that we will receive $18,000 in additional income from congregants that do not pledge but that do contribute. We anticipate a deficit budget and expect to deal with the deficit via our cash reserves or through our endowments.
Our physical plant and capital assets are in good shape. We do have somewhat limited space for our fellowship opportunities but have found creative configurations to maximize the space. We have discussed expansion and are in agreement that this is not necessary at the present time. We do not see any capital needs in the foreseeable future.
The committee consists of the Treasurer, Pledge Treasurer and Finance Chair. Each month the financial reports and pledge history reports are reviewed in advance and discussed at the monthly Vestry/Council meeting. This group is responsible for preparing and presenting the annual budget to the Vestry/Council and again at the Parish Annual Meeting for their final approval. Additionally, the committee is responsible for scheduling the annual financial audit. For the last several years we have enlisted the services of the former retired Diocesan Treasurer to perform these audits. No material deficiencies have been found in each audit.