Contributions to St. Michael and All Angels take many forms, not all of which can be shown on a chart or a spreadsheet. Volunteers greet visitors, stuff envelopes, prepare and serve food, make prayer shawls, buy groceries for the food pantry, give classes, visit the sick, perform music, serve at mass, serve on committees, and carry out many other vital activities in service to God, our parish, the community and the world. All this is in addition to the good works carried out by clergy and staff. The faithful giving of our time, talent and treasure starts with our contributions to the church’s operating fund (General Fund), which enables us to do all the rest.
Sometimes parishioners make “in-kind” donations of food, supplies, equipment, items for sale, etc. These are not reported in parish finances, but are nevertheless much appreciated.
Certain church groups maintain their own separate finances, which are not included in the parish’s financial reporting. These include the Social Action Committee, the Altar Guild and Episcopal Women’s Ministry (formerly called ECW).
Donations to the church can be made by cash or check, or by Bill Pay through your bank. A Paypal account is also available for online donations, as seen below.
In 2010, the Rev. John R. Smith instituted a budget line item entitled “Faith Promise,” encouraging parishioners to give to the parish in commemoration or thanksgiving for particular events in their lives, in addition to their pledge contributions. In 2012, the parish instituted special collections at Easter, All Saints’ Day and Christmas, with a letter explaining the purposes to which the money would be directed. Proceeds from these are usually recorded as Faith Promise income, but some has been placed in the Building Restoration Fund when major building repairs were needed. At present, the General Fund has a small negative balance.
In the past five years, the 1953 building (with numerous additions over the parish’s 62-year history) has had a new roof, major repairs to adobe walls outside and water-damaged plaster inside, restoration of old, damaged wood, major repairs to the kitchen’s exhaust system, the rebuilding of the Walsingham altar after an arson incident, and new chairs and carpeting in the Smith Parish Center, the latter two items paid for with proceeds from our annual sale of homemade candy. In 2014 the parish finished paying for the purchase, installation and expansion of the A F Schultz Aeolian-Skinner Pipe Organ, a 45 rank organ first built in 1959. In 2015, repairs were made to the organ due to damage from termites and packrats. Also in 2015, the church was fumigated for wood termites, with further treatment for subterranean termites.
Although the parish has suffered many losses of beloved parishioners over the past five years as the congregation ages, we have worked together to keep the church vital and the building standing. Our many ministries are supported with parishioners’ time, talent and treasure, and our Family Mass and other efforts encourage participation of the next generation of churchgoers. A large bequest in 2015 did much to stabilize the parish financially. Although many challenges remain, St. Michael and All Angels is financially healthy, and ready to call its next full-time rector.
Fund Accounting and Restrictions
Like most non-profit organizations, St. Michael and All Angels operates on a Fund Accounting system of finances. This means that income and expenses are separated into different funds for different purposes. Our largest fund is the General Fund, whose purpose is to keep the church solvent, the building maintained, the lights on and the staff and clergy paid. Without the General Fund, the church would cease to exist.
The General Fund is considered “unrestricted” money, able to be used to any needed purpose, subject to the constraints of Rector and Vestry approval, the Financial Statement of Mission (budget) and the amount of cash available. Similarly, the Discretionary Fund is unrestricted, able to be spent at the discretion of the Rector, and the Parish Secretary as directed by the Rector.
Other funds are either vestry designated, temporarily restricted or permanently restricted. Vestry designated funds mostly consist of memorial project funds, which the Rector and Vestry can spend for any specific purpose because the donors have not placed restrictions on their use. Temporarily restricted funds are donated for a specific purpose, and cannot be spent on anything else until that purpose is fulfilled. A permanently restricted fund cannot be spent at all, but must be used to generate temporarily restricted income. The Mulvaney Fund Corpus and the Fowler Fund Endowment are permanently restricted funds.
Vestry designated and restricted funds make it possible to carry our many ministries that enhance the life of the church and community, and to cover certain major expenses that the General Fund cannot easily handle. For example, the Building Restoration Fund paid for two expensive but badly needed termite treatments in 2015. The Deacon’s Shoebox Project Fund paid for shoes and orthotics provided by Deacon Michael Meyers at St. Andrew’s Children’s Clinic.
Thanks to all for your time, talent and treasure, as we work together to make possible our many ministries!