Time, Talent and Treasure
Managing the finances of the parish is not dissimilar to managing the finances of our homes: We receive income and we manage our expenses within it. The parish has only one substantive income, and that is by relying on the generosity of parishioners sharing their treasures via the direct giving program.
There are ways in which the parish can reduce the level of expenses. There are many functions within the parish where parishioners generously give of their “Time” to perform often mundane roles which the parish would otherwise employ the services of professionals. Often this generous giving of time goes un-noticed by the majority of us, but imagine:
> the condition the church would be in if it were not for the Friday ladies giving of their time to clean the church every week;
> the state of the church surrounds if it were not for the maintenance men performing their role every Thursday;
> the cost of employing professionals to mow the lawns.
Then there are those within the parish who give of their “Talents” which again reduce the expense of employing professionals. Some examples include:
> electricians who for years have done much of the wiring, globe replacement, etc.
> accountants who have prepared the financial accounts,
> carpenters who undertake many small maintenance and improvement tasks
> the chap who recently quoted to lay a new driveway at the ATY youth house, but offered to volunteer his services if we could provide volunteer labour and cover the cost of materials – of course, we agreed!
> The musicians who sit behind the organ and other instruments at Mass and give of their time to prepare and attend the necessary meetings.
Those who give of their Treasures via direct giving, and volunteer their Time and/or Talents are good Stewards. Are there ways in which you feel you could be a better Steward of the Time, Talents and Treasures bestowed on you?
No matter how much parishioners give of their Time and Talents there will always be a need for giving of our Treasures. Some expenses cannot be diminished, eg council and water rates, insurances, electricity, etc.
The Parish Finance Committee maintains a 10 year financial plan for the Parish, to ensure the path we are following will see us maintain financial viability for the future. In this plan we include the income via the direct giving program and other small income sources. We then budget against this for normal operating expenses of insurances, rates, electricity, salaries, etc, and the natural escalation of the cost of these expenses.
We also budget heavily for maintenance. The parish owns considerable property, including the two churches, convent, ATY, and the presbytery. We all know of the ongoing cost of maintaining our own homes, so imagine the constant maintenance needs of the parish properties. Aside from regular maintenance we budget $32,000pa for major capital maintenance. In recent years we have used this “reserve” for replacing the plumbing of the church toilets, repairing the water damaged church gutters and eaves and replacing the 30 year old kitchen in the presbytery.
The work of the finance committee is made easier by the ongoing generosity of our good Steward parishioners giving generously of their God given Time, Talents and Treasures. Good Stewards know that they are rewarded in many ways for such generosity.