In my last article at the beginning of December I said that Holy Trinity & St Mark’s would not be able to meet all its financial commitments for 2020 because it was looking like income would be about £17000 less than in 2019, due to the problems caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Fortunately, I also said that a small miracle was all that would be needed to solve the problem, and that the Diocese-wide ‘Call to Pray and Give’ might provide the catalyst for this.
Thanks to the positive message given by Nancy and the efficient way that this was passed on by our Communications Team, our congregation has responded to ‘Pray and Give’ with its usual enthusiasm and generosity. I am now therefore pleased to confirm that we have been able to meet all our liabilities. What a great (and miraculous) start to the New Year!
In our Parish, the Pray & Give initiative raised £11596 from 57 separate donations, and there will be a further sum in excess of £2500 to come from Gift Aid in due course. Even though income from other sources was higher than expected in November & December, and expenses lower, there is no doubt that without this magnificent response we would have been well short of the figure needed to pay our Parish Share for the year.
Just before Christmas I heard that the total raised across the Diocese through ‘Pray and Give’ was heading towards £250,000 and I am sure that this figure will have been surpassed by now. Whilst this is a substantial sum, it is well below the income lost during the rest of the year and I am sure that many other treasurers, and the Diocesan Finance Team, will be wondering, and worrying, what further problems 2021 will bring.
From my perspective the challenge for 2021 will be equal to, or greater than that for 2020. At the time of writing, we have just gone into the new national lockdown which means that church is now closed for services and the resumption of social and fundraising events fades further into the future. These two activities account for over 25% of our income, so we will continue to be reliant on our regular Planned Giving and additional donations to balance the books.
I have just increased my monthly standing order and if you would like to start paying this way, or increase an existing payment, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to the ‘Giving’ tab at the top of our website www.bolton-le-sands.org to download a form.
Thank you again to all who contribute so generously to the life of Holy Trinity & St Mark’s.