Financial and Administrative Resources
Coach facilitated help sessions are being offered to clergy moving in a crazy time through the generosity of the Duke Endowment.
As the state of North Carolina prepares to enter Phase Two, the Cabinet has updated our Conference Guidelines for In-Person Worship and Ministry During COVID-19. These will be effective Saturday May 23, 2020 and will remain in effect until at least June 30, 2020. In alignment and compliance with public health guidance, governmental mandates, and our scriptural and Wesleyan call to "love others" and “do no harm,” these guidelines are to be followed by churches in the Western North Carolina Conference. We have also prepared a Frequently Asked Questions to help you navigate ministry concerns at this time.
As the State of North Carolina loosens restrictions imposed on the public related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the churches in The Western North Carolina of The United Methodist Church face a variety of the same questions and issues faced by the business community as they look toward opening their doors again. Find information related to employee/employer AND church/public risks when re-opening.
Why Reopening a Church is Different: Planning for the future during COVID-19 presents challenges for the church unlike any other.5/20/2020
Alex A. Shanks explores why reopening a church is different than reopening a business. "Planning for the future during COVID-19 presents challenges for the church unlike any other. How will we lead in a time of change?"
We realize many churches may be struggling financially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, the Conference wants to partner with you in these ways - (1) A three-month waiver of the local church component of pension and health benefit premiums. (2) The establishment of the WNC Connexion Fund to help our WNC congregations support clergy and their families as they continue to lead our ministries. (3) Interpretation of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
The constraints of social distancing could tempt churches to throw established finance procedures out the window. Please don’t! Here are some important procedures that are available through the use of technology to help us through a difficult time.
In addition to PPP loans, the CARES Act creates a payroll tax deferral period (“Payroll Tax Delay”) running from March 27 through December 31, 2020. Employers—including tax-exempt nonprofits like UMC local churches, annual conferences and general agencies—may defer/delay payment of the “employer share” of Social Security taxes that they otherwise are responsible for paying to the federal government with respect to their employees.
Nonprofits with a 501(c)3 status - including churches - are eligible to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program. GCFA has automated the process of obtaining the 501(c)3 documentation for your church or other United Methodist organization. We have updated our user guide to help facilitate this process. Be sure to read through it today. Visit www.umgroupruling.org to get started.
As churches explore more digital ministry options, GCFA has developed some guidance on reporting and counting the number of viewers of your online worship and Bible study attendance.
Bishop Leeland and the Cabinet share an update on appointments this year after discernment and reflection given the current circumstances of social distancing and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bishop Leeland and other Cabinet members lobby Governor Cooper to include church employees in extended unemployment benefits. Because churches are exempt from paying both federal and state unemployment insurance, church employees are not eligible to receive unemployment benefits at this time.
Many churches have reached out regarding the payment of apportionment funds given the Conference office closure. WNCC Treasury Services continue to operate and process apportionment payments and payment disbursements weekly. Apportionment payments may still be sent to PO Box 2757,Huntersville, NC 28070. Thank you for your support of our connectional ministries.
The United Methodist Credit Union (TUMCU) is a participating institution in the Paycheck Protection Program and would be happy to assist any UMC church or related organization who would like to apply. Our online application and other information about the SBA program is available at https://www.tumcu.org/sba-paycheck-protection-program/.
How do you raise funds faithfully during a crisis?
In response to the economic impact of the global pandemic, the GBHEM Office of Loans and Scholarships has made some important updates to its policies. New 2020 guidelines – including a loan payment suspension option – are outlined here.
IMPORTANT Update on CARES Paycheck Protection Program We have received information that you are NOT required to have a charge conference to apply for this loan. Please do make sure that your Finance Committee and Church Council know that you are applying. We have also learned that the application process will open on April 3. Please work with your bank to get your application in on that date or as close to it as possible as there is a limited pool of money available for these loans. View ...
Your telehealth benefits now include behavioral and mental health. The CDC advises the use of telehealth and telemedicine when available to avoid overloading doctor's offices and emergency departments.
In response to new needs from our churches, the Western NC Conference is please to announce a free online giving platform! Donors will be able to specify which church should receive their donation. The Conference will remit payments to the churches monthly.
To Wespath Benefits and Investment Participants:
Getting Started with Online Giving: Resources from WNCC Treasury Services and WNCC United Methodist Foundation3/18/2020
As churches continue to meet online, WNCC Treasury Services and the United Methodist Foundation have produced this resource that provides several options for online giving. While many of our churches already have online giving procedures in place, we know many do not. We hope these options will prove helpful for you. It is times like these that we are appreciative of the United Methodist connection. We want you to know we are here to assist you and your congregation in whatever ways we can. Please let us know if there are other ways that we might be of assistance to you.