Eric Schulz

Notes on Epiphany’s (2018) Budget

This is a primer for those in our church who may never have seen the Epiphany budget and/or aren’t familiar with its creation.  Our expenses can be broadly categorized as falling into one of the following groups:

  • People – All expenses related to people. This includes salaries, taxes, and health and life insurance and amounts to $427,998 for 2018. We never want to see this amount go down because that would mean fewer staff, fewer benefits or lower salaries. In fact, just to maintain salaries, this number generally goes up every year due to inflation. Additionally, many of us would like to see merit or COL (cost of living) raises annually for staff.
  • Buildings and Grounds – All expenses related to the building and grounds. This includes mortgages, repairs, property insurance, utilities and diocesan pledge and amounts to $191,000 for 2018.
  • Education, Liturgy and Music – This includes Christian Education for adults and children, youth activities, nursery expenses, Vacation Bible School, musicians, organ and piano maintenance, altar supplies, worship, outreach, parish life and stewardship and amounts to $56,075 for 2018.

Those three large categories make up $675,073 of the 2018 budget. That leaves $26,536, which can be used for everything else, including office supplies, computer and office equipment, postage, telephone and internet, bank fees, payroll fees, audit expenses and other expenses.

Here is that same information visually.

That’s half the story.  Now, let’s take a look at income. Some of us may feel that church budgeting is just moving money from one bucket to another; however, that’s not the case.  If we don’t receive enough income, decisions will have to be made that could have a real and lasting negative impact on the people and programs of this church.

Each year, many of us pledge that we will give some amount of money to Epiphany.  For 2018, that amount is $512,254.  Epiphany has total revenues of $701,609 and pledged income makes up the majority of that.  There are other sources of revenue, including offering plate income, fees charged for building use, etc.   Those other items make budgeting more difficult, because we have to guess some of those amounts.   If I’ve pledged $5000, I am expected to give at least $5000.   However, if I were just to put that money in the plate each week (without the pledge), the vestry and finance committee wouldn’t be able to count on that money, since I could also give $500 or $50,000.  Because of that, your pledge is the best way to support all of the amazing things that are going on at Epiphany.

Pledging is what allows our church to operate at the level it does.   Due to inflation, your goal should be for your pledge to grow annually just to keep up with inflation.   The people and programs of Epiphany are already great.  If you’d like to see what Epiphany can be, please challenge yourself to grow your pledge.