Mid-Week Update from St Johns
Date: May 27, 2020
I hope everyone enjoyed the Bank Holiday on Monday, and that those of you with schoolchildren like us are appreciating the contrast (not) between having them around the house all day for half term, as against a regular Covid school day.
Stephen, Graham and I have been discussing *M*oney*, and we thought it was maybe a good idea to give a quick update of our thoughts.
As you are probably aware, about half our income comes from renting out the church buildings, and the rest comes from personal donations. Obviously the rental income has very nearly dried up; the only hirer now is the nursery, and that is only operating at 50% capacity for key workers’ children, with proportional reduction in rent. In order to meet the shortfall while we are shut, we have taken £20K from St John’s reserves. This is so that we can continue to pay Stephen, Rachel and Rob, plus our parish expenses and essential bills. We’re very fortunate that we have the reserves to use, and this is exactly the sort of emergency that they should be used for, so we are very grateful for our past prudence, which enables us to operate financially now even though the church building is closed. However, we do need to be very mindful of how we look after our money, as it’s going to be tough for everyone for the next little while.
*How can we create more security for St John’s?*
First of all, a very big thank you to those of you who have been making additional electronic payments instead of giving money on Sunday to the collection plate, it is so appreciated by us.
If you don’t do this at the moment, and you are able to, it would be very helpful for us if you could consider setting up a regular payment to St John’s instead of making cash donations on Sundays as you might have done previously. This will give us some handle on how much money we are getting in monthly, and we will be able to plan our future with a bit more certainty.
Another benefit of electronic payments is that we can then maximise the amounts we can reclaim in gift aid – We are able to reclaim gift aid on up to £8,000 a year in small donations without providing personal details: Normally, we get in over £12,000/pa from Sunday collections and concerts, so we are unable to reclaim gift aid on about £4000, which equates to an extra potential £1000 that we might be able to recoup. If we could use this period to get a large proportion of the Sunday collection online, it would free up the £8000 gift aid amount for future one-off donations from concerts etc. which would be very efficient for us.
NB If you are making an electronic donation, and you pay tax, please do check with Rachel if she has a gift aid form for you, then she can ensure that we reclaim the gift aid from your donations, maximising the amount we receive at no cost to you.
*St Johns Planned Giving: Bank Account Details:-
*Please note when you are setting this up, that this is different from our everyday account (which for example we’ve asked Yunghee’s money to be paid into). Only the administrator has access to the planned giving account, whereas there is a small group of us who can see the everyday account to authorise payments.*
*Sort Code* 60-24-07
*Account Number* 50004034
*Ref* – Your Surname
*Sponsoring the Music *
One of the things we have asked Rob to curtail over this period, is the spending of any of the music budget that was allocated to him earlier in the year. He’s using his salaried time to provide some wonderful music for us, as are the music scholars, so thank you Ros and Lydia as well!
However, Rob would love to be able to commission some of his musician friends – who are currently really struggling to find any work at all – to record hymns, psalms and anthems for us for the Sunday Services. We’ve discussed this with him, and were wondering whether the answer to this is, for anyone who would like to sponsor an anthem, to get in touch with Rob
directly. We could include in the title a short description of the reason why you have sponsored the work – maybe it’s a for a special person, or to remember a certain event. The tracks will be on the St John’s music SoundCloud on https://soundcloud.com/musicatstjohns/ so everyone from church (and of course, anyone else you would like to share the link with) will be able to enjoy them. Here are the first few pieces that Rob would
like to record (he has a much longer list if this is a success) :
1. *A. Bruckner – Christus factus est* 2. *G. Fauré – Cantique de Jean Racine *
3. *G. Fauré – Movements from the Requiem* *(seeing as we won’t be able to have our ‘Come & Sing’ this year)* 4. *J. Rutter – Prayer of Saint Patrick*
As a rough guide, it will cost about £30/musician for their time to record a piece. This is Rob’s email if you want to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org <mailto:email@example.com>
*Our choral scholars * have added so much to the quality of our music. If we were in church, we would be starting to ask anyone who was interested, to give some money to the scholarship fund so we can have scholars with us in September for the year 2020-21. If you would be interested in helping with *The Choral Scholarship Fund*, please could you email Rob on the email above.
Thank you for listening to my money ramble, now here is something to cheer up the email. First of all, this week’s plant pics – and Anthea has a query for any plant lovers, an unknown plant that she would like to identify. If you know what it is, please do email me back and I’ll
forward your answer on to the Vernell’s.
Summer Flowers 1.pdf
And finally – my mum sent us this bird puzzle earlier in the week. It’s been driving us a bit mad, so I thought I would share that feeling with you. Enjoy! (*evil laugh*)
British Birds Puzzle.pdf