Parish Share assessments

Your Parish Share Assessments

An important update about Parish Share support in 2020 and Deanery Parish Share assessment for 2021.

The Liverpool Diocesan Board of Finance has set out their approach to supporting parishes in 2020 through Parish Share Credit. The credit has been made possible following our discussions with the Church Commissioners on offering financial support.
 
Full details of this Deanery led process have been sent to Area Deans and Lay Chairs
 
Meanwhile, the Board of Finance has been able to announce there is no actual increase in Deanery Parish Share in 2021.
 
Here the Archdeacons explain how Parish Share Credit will work while our Diocesan Secretary, Mike Eastwood outlines the arrangements for Deanery Parish Share.


Parish Share Credit: How we will support parishes and deaneries paying Parish Share in 2020

Parish Share remains important. As the method, we use for funding the clergy stipend and associated costs. So we need to maintain income or it will have important consequences for mission and ministry across our diocese and our ability to see a bigger church making a bigger difference. We know and understand the closure of church buildings and the uncertainty in some people’s incomes has inevitably affected giving in many places; parish fees for weddings and funerals have been lost; the restrictions on all of us have made usual sources of income such as letting of church halls and fundraising events almost impossible.

Your commitment and the commitment of parishes to the payment of Deanery Parish Share even in this year has been magnificent.

We are very grateful to all those parishes who have continued regular payment of parish share, and especially to those who have paid parish share in advance to help our diocesan cash flow. In the Diocese of Liverpool, we have very low levels of diocesan reserves, and this commitment has meant that we have been able to meet all our current commitments, especially to clergy stipends.

However, a proportion of parishes across our Diocese are unavoidably not able to pay parish share in full this year. Where incomes have suffered and reserves are low, in some places this year the money has simply run out.

We are grateful to those parishes who are equally committed, but where the money just isn’t there; and we are grateful to parishes who have let their deaneries, archdeacons and the finance team at St James’ House know when they have not been able to make parish share payments.

In normal circumstances the significant parish income losses would result in:

  • significant losses to Deanery Mission and Growth Funds,
  • parishes having to find money in future years to repay arrears, and
  • a damaging pause in clergy appointments across large parts of our diocese
  • as well as the other consequences for clergy and parishes of parish share arrears.

To avoid this, we have worked closely with the Church Commissioners to secure financial support which we will use alongside diocesan reserves for Parish Share Credit, to offset 2020 parish share underpayments caused by Covid-19.

This will be a deanery led process. Area Deans and Lay Chairs will be coordinating the recommendations for Parish Share credit within their deanery. They will be in touch with parishes in due course.


The Archdeacons
 

Deanery Parish Share Assessments 2021

I want to echo our Archdeacons’ comments on the outstanding commitment of parishes across our diocese to paying Parish Share. I sincerely hope that the Parish Share credits that will be offered in the latter part of 2020 will help offset some of the financial challenges from this year.

In terms of Parish Share for next year, the headline increase in Parish Share will be 1.9%. This is to ensure that we can continue to maintain clergy pay in real terms.

However, the Diocesan Board of Finance will offer a further Parish Share credit in 2021 which is equivalent to the 1.9% increase in Parish Share. In other words, there will be no actual increase in Parish Share in 2021.

Deanery Mission & Growth Funds will continue to be available in the usual way. A level of transitional relief will also be available to those deaneries that received it in 2020. But the 1.9% increase in Parish Share will be offset by a one-off allocation of diocesan resources so that there is no increase in the baseline Parish Share in 2021.

I hope that these 2 measures – Parish Share credits in 2020 and ensuring no actual increase in Parish Share in 2021 – will help parishes and deaneries as they continue to respond to the challenges of Covid-19.

Mike Eastwood
Diocesan Secretary


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