CRCA Ministry Share – and why it’s a very good thing…

Ever wondered what your church’s ‘ministry share’ actually achieves? Is it really just a ‘church tax’? It may be time to think again. Tony Deenick tells us why…

[This material is being circulated so local churches and pastors can encourage their members to give generously to the CRCA Deficit Reduction Appeal, which is being held this coming Sunday, August 19, in many CRCA congregations – DG]

As individual churches there are often things we would like to do which we can’t afford or can’t easily do on our own. Alternatively, we may simply want to do some things less expensively or do them better by being part of a group. So every three years at a meeting of representatives of all our churches, called the Synod, we decide what things we can best do together as a denomination. To pay for these ministries churches agree to pay a “ministry share” based on membership. In practice the ministry share represents around 6% (±3%) of a church’s budget, depending on size and levels of giving.

So what does your church’s Ministry Share payment accomplish?

MinShare2012

Well, it is used to cover administration and denominational legal obligations, such things as setting minister’s salary levels, providing for long service leave, collecting and disbursing superannuation payments, paying copyright fees and providing financial advice. Some of the money goes towards maintaining the denominational website and web addresses and publishing the annual church yearbook. Other funds are used to provide for the cost of Synods and the work of synodical committees which provide oversight over the joint activities and denominational workers. Some committees undertake research on behalf of the churches in areas of common interest. For example, the last Synod set up a committee to look into the salaries of ministers and ministry workers and another to investigate the best alternative to replace the 1984 version of the NIV for church use. All these activities are provided or supported by the denominational Treasurer and Administrator.

The largest proportion of ministry share funds goes towards providing leadership, mentoring, training and support to local churches through our denominational workers

A significant proportion of the money goes towards supporting the work of the Reformed Theological College in Geelong and the Candidacy Committee as they prepare people for ministry in our churches, monitor their progress and provide them with a vicariate (a year of “on the job” training in a local church under the guidance of a senior pastor). In addition some funds are used to help cover the costs of leadership training in churches and in-service training and support at ReCharge (Ministers & Wives) conferences. A small part of ministry share also goes towards supporting the denomination’s mission in the Solomons.

The largest proportion of ministry share funds goes towards providing leadership, mentoring, training and support to local churches through our denominational workers: the Ministry Development Coach and the Youth and Children’s Coordinators. They also help promote the vision of the CRCA and coordinate joint activities by the churches.

In particular, the Ministry Development Coach is responsible for resourcing churches for growth, health and development, promoting collaborative approaches in this and other training initiatives, promoting the CRCA vision including producing newsletters and overseeing the denominational website, and generally assisting and coaching ministers, church planters and other church workers.

The Youth Coordinator is responsible for assisting with training in youth leadership, development of youth evangelism and nurture in the local church, oversight of regional and national youth programs such as the ministry internship program and convention planning, management of the Resource Centre, and general coaching, support and encouragement of youth workers in our churches.

The Children’s Coordinator is responsible for promoting effective children’s ministries in the local churches, providing resources for these ministries, overseeing and providing training in the ChildSafe program, maintaining a healthy network of children’s workers and providing them with advice and support.

By working together through a relatively small ‘ministry share’, contribution, each local church helps to provide substantial services and support to all the churches corporately.

Your generous support through ministry share helps the CRCA continue to deliver good leadership and helpful resources to local churches.

– Tony Deenick Building & Finance Committee (previously known as The Synodical Board of Management)