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CARE Initiative seeks to address economic issues facing pastoral leaders and to advocate for pastors and church boards in pastor financial planning and compensation.

What is CARE

Man giving a lectureAddressing Economic Challenges Facing Pastoral leaders in the Church of God, Anderson, IN

If you are credentialed by a USA-based credentialing committee of the Church of God…

If you are a governing board member of a Church of God congregation…

Then CARE can bless you with important resources and assistance.

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CARE blesses pastors and congregations by:

  • Hosting Regional Seminars addressing healthy practices for pastors and board members in pastor compensation and family finance planning.
  • Offering no-cost financial planning for pastors and their families
  • Matching contributions for pastors and congregations that enroll in retirement planning through Servant Solutions
  • Develops strategies that help young pastors pay down educational debt
  • Assists new pastors to establish healthy financial plans as they transition into the first years of congregational ministry
  • Provides opportunities for established pastors to renew and sustain their commitments to healthy financial practices

Ultimately, CARE works to inform and challenge the ways congregations bless their pastors and encourage pastors in their long arc of ministry.

 

What Financial Planning Resources Are Available?

care-coverPASTORAL COMPENSATION: A MANUAL FOR CHURCH BOARDS

A Church of God-branded rationale and guidelines for pastors and church boards on pastoral compensation. A collection of pastoral compensation topics authored by knowledgeable persons in the Church of God.

  • Clergy Compensation is Complicated  Jeff Jenness
  • The Cost of a Minister vs. The Cost of a Ministry  Jim O’Bold
  • Equitable Compensation Planning  James Brown
  • Pastoral Compensation and the IRS  Julie Nance
  • Keeping Your Pastor Healthy Randy Spence
    Staff Pastors and Compensation Considerations  Vickie Doyle
  • Part-Time and Bi-Vocational Pastor Compensation  Bill Riley
  • Interim Pastor Compensation  Oral Withrow, posthumously
  • Best Practices in Pastoral Compensation  Bob Moss
  • Pastoral Compensation: Thinking Theologically  James Lewis

Order by contacting Roz Hency at RHency@chog.org or call 800-848-2464.

16 Videos

PASTORAL COMPENSATION: QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

These short videos are designed for use in church board meetings for training with members. Each five-minute video answers one question related to pastoral compensation and support. Click on the desired video below

CARE Financial Planning—FREE

A CARE Financial Planner is available to confer with pastors and church boards and offer direct financial consultation related to pastoral compensation. These consultations offer a variety of services to pastors and church boards through a variety of contact options: telephone, on-site, and virtual. All financial planning consultations are offered to pastors and boards—absolutely free.

For information and appointments, complete the Inquiry Page linked to the How Do I Begin? section of the web page.

CARE Seminars—FREE

These six-hour on-site training events offer pastors and church board members practical information for understanding the nuances of pastoral compensation. Expert and engaging facilitators will initiate round-table discussion in an interactive and enjoyable environment. Discussion titles include: Pastoral Compensation is Complicated, The Cost of Ministry vs. the Cost of the Minister, Pastoral Compensation and the IRS, and How Do I Talk With My Board About Pastoral Compensation.

Registration: FREE to pastors, spouses, and church board members.

Information: Contact Roz Hency at RHency@chog.org or 800-848-2464

How Does CARE Work?

CARE Initiative addresses the critical economic issues facing pastoral leaders in two sequential ways: Education and Assistance.

 

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Educational Participation

CARE begins with a directed and purposeful educational effort with pastors and congregational financial decision makers.

CARE offers free financial counsel to ministry students in higher education (undergraduate and graduate) in order to minimize and pay down education debt.

CARE sponsors Seminars. Seminars highlight expert presenters in clergy compensation, round-table discussions, and opportunity for question/answer sessions. Seminar participation, either pre- or post-assistance fund awards, is the expectation of the program.

CARE makes available the Manual for Church Boards and an accompanying 16 video series, Pastoral Compensation: Questions and Answers.

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Ministry Excellence Funds (Assistance)

Once pastors and board members have participated in educational and consulting venues, pastors may make application for Ministry Excellence Funds (MEF).

Ministry Excellence funds address three particular pastoral economic issues: (1) educational debt relief, (2) retirement planning assistance, and (3) transition assistance.

Congregational Matching Funds—The expectation of matching congregational contributions increases the potential of open and supportive conversation between pastor and congregational financial decision-makers. Such conversations can be learning opportunities for lay leaders to understand more fully the scope of pastoral financial demands and to respond accordingly within their means to do so. The desired result is that congregations continue these budgeted financial line items beyond the time frame of the CARE Initiative.

Once pastors and board members have participated in educational and consulting venues, pastors may make application for Ministry Excellence Funds (MEF).

Educational Debt Relief— These funds are limited to younger pastors who are newer to pastoral ministry: <40 years old OR <10 years in credentialed ministry in the Church of God.

Ministerial students, undergraduate and graduate, will be counseled in their intentional planning toward debt minimization and reduction and be provided a plan for in achieving that goal with guidance from the CARE Financial Planner. To be eligible for financial assistance, applicants must be employed by a Church of God congregation.

  • Process: After one year of pastoral service in a congregation, a pastor may apply for ministry educational assistance. Grant funds will award a one-time congregational match up to $600. The pastor can re-apply for a one-year renewable payment for a maximum CARE payment over two years of $1,200. With the full congregational match, the two-year amount would be $2,400. The CARE payment will be made in December of the applicable year.

Retirement Planning Assistance—Retirement seed funds will be made available to assist pastors both to enter and to re-engage a retirement fund through Servant Solutions. This assistance fund is limited to younger pastors who are < 40 years old OR < 10 years in credentialed ministry in the Church of God.

  • Process: Eligibility will be determined through a one-on-one assessment with the CARE Financial Planner. Once pastors and church treasurers have completed the application, a plan to augment the pastor’s contribution monthly over a one-year period will be implemented: $50 (congregation) + $50 (CARE) = $100 per month for 1 year. This formula provides $1,200 toward a pastor’s retirement account each year. CARE funds are one-year renewable. The annual CARE contribution will be added to the pastor’s Servant Solution quarterly for each year the pastor qualifies.

Transition Assistance—During extended search processes, pastoral candidates have limited income and, many times, find times of transition to be financially challenging. Direct assistance for pastors in crisis will be made available at regional levels. Regional pastors (RPs) will serve as conduits in the application process for these Ministry Excellence Funds.

  • Process: Eligibility will be determined through an application process with the regional pastor of the state or region of the exiting congregation. Upon recommendation from the regional pastor, a one-time award of $500 per-month with a cap of three months will be granted to the pastor in transition. Assistance funds will be limited to pastors experiencing 1) involuntary transitions and 2) with no immediate relocation plan. Transition assistance is non-renewable.
How Do I Begin

Step 1—Inquiry

Click on the link below to register your inquiry into the benefits of the CARE Initiative.

inset question

The CARE Financial Planner, Ryan Harter, will respond to your inquiry. The purpose of this first conversation is to establish an encouraging connection regarding your particular concerns and requests.

Click here for an Inquiry Form

 

Step 2—Registrations and Applications   

After the initial conversation with a CARE representative, you will receive links to the appropriate services, registrations, and applications.

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