• Audits: Practicing Internal Controls ✓
    Vestry Papers
    It's valuable for congregational leaders to have – and practice – good internal controls. Martha Goodwill offers four specific actions every congregation should adopt.
  • Audits: A necessity, not an option ✓
    Vestry Papers
    Especially in these difficult economic times, when every penny counts, an effective church audit is a necessity and no longer an option.
  • Investment Strategies for Endowments for 2017
    Webinars
    2016 proved to be a complex year for investing. How should you position your endowment/investment fund portfolio for 2017 with the advent of a new administration in Washington? Please join ECF and our State Street Global Advisors investment managers …
  • Vital Practices Digest: 5 Endowment Resources
    Vital Posts
    In the November Vital Practices Digest, we offer 5 resources for creating and growing endowments, practicing good oversight, and establishing year-round stewardship in your congregation. It’s easy and free to receive more great resources …
  • Building a Legacy
    Vestry Papers
    Sometimes, the obstacle to creating an endowment is simply, “we don’t have the money.” In “Building a Legacy,” Demi Prentiss shares the story of how a smaller church, made smaller by a church split, found a way to build a legacy for future …
  • Are You Overspending Your Endowment?
    Webinars
    Are you overspending your endowment? How do you know? Does an alarm ring? Do the endowment police show up in force? State law comes into play, particularly for true endowments. But in the bigger picture, prudent investing and prudent spending go a lo…
  • Spending Rules and Investment Allocations
    Webinars
    Do you know the laws that govern your endowment? Do you know if you are prudently managing your endowment assets? The Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act (UPMIFA), a state law, addresses how to invest and spend from your “true” …
  • Choosing a Planned Giving Shepherd for your Church
    Webinars
    Selecting the best person(s) to lead your planned giving efforts is an important step in building and sustaining your program. Please join us as we review qualities your congregation or Episcopal entity should be seeking in a volunteer for this vital…
  • Investment Strategies for Endowments for 2016
    Webinars
    2015 proved to be a volatile year for investments. How should you position your endowment/investment fund portfolio for 2016? Please join ECF and our State Street Global Advisors investment managers as we review the investment returns of 2015 and ex…
  • Making a Planned Gift to Your Parish
    Webinars
    Which planned gift is best for you and your family? Join us to learn more about planned giving options and how they can benefit both you and your parish or favorite Episcopal charity. Planned or legacy giving is an important aspect of your personal s…
  • Basics of Endowment
    Webinars
    Join us to review basic principles and best practices for endowment management. You will examine important, and easy to use, documents to use for structuring your endowment and for clarifying its purpose. Participants will also learn about endowment …
  • Vital Practices Digest: 5 Resources for Planned Giving
    Vital Posts
  • Gifts: Thank You But????
    Vital Posts
    What do you do when a gift received may not be the right fit? With Christmas comes an ethos of increased giving in our country. Hearts are opened wide and the spirit of giving is encouraged. Yet, how many of us have opened a present to find tha…
  • June 2014 Editor’s Letter: Finance and Administration
    Vital Posts
    As congregational leaders, we seek to find the right balance between tending to the temporal matters of our churches and working towards our hopeful vision of what God is asking us to do in our communities. Having the right tools in place helps us …
  • Endowments
    Vestry Papers
    Key issues congregations should consider when planning for and creating an endowment.
  • Are We Prepared to Receive?
    Vital Posts
    How an invitation or gift is received can be a telling indicator…. I live in small city. The other night I was coming out of a restaurant with some girl friends and found a wallet on the ground near my car. I looked inside and found a cell pho…
  • Church Leadership Conference: ECF Presentations
    Tools
    ECF offered a number of workshops the 2014 Church Leadership Conference: Unlocking the New Church. Copies of some of the presentations are offered below.
  • Financing Mission
    Vital Posts
    “What’s St. George’s mission statement?” a member of our finance committee asked me. My answer was straightforward, though I think it took him back: “We don’t have one.” This committee member, you see, was drafting an endowm…
  • Fine China and Lace Ladies
    Vital Posts
    In 41 years, the only time my husband has ever seen his mother’s fine china out of the cabinet is when they moved and it was boxed up. He has never seen it used. When we moved this last time, I set my lace ladies on the top of the piano. Th…
  • Talking About Money
    Vital Posts
    Let's talk about money. Now that we’re in June, half-way through the year, how do your finances look? Is everything is on track for ending the year in sound fiscal condition? Summer may be a good time for your vestry to take stock, perhap…
  • Knowledge is Power
    Vestry Papers
    In “Knowledge is Power,” William Doubleday introduces congregational leaders to the resources available to them in Canon 7: Of Business Methods in Church Affairs.
  • Noises Off
    Vital Posts
    One of my favorite stage devices is the unseen character, the person who has a significant role in plot and play but is never seen by the audience. Today I am thinking about the householder in the parable of the talents. Without him, there is no…
  • Are we being faithful as fiduciaries?
    Vital Posts
    “Fiduciary.” When I first heard the word it was a bit of a stumbling block, a mouthful of technical legalese. But in years of working with nonprofit and church groups, I eventually picked up its meaning by context. Basically, members of governi…
  • When the Next Egg Shrinks
    Vestry Papers
    How do you manage your parish’s operations when the value of the endowment shrinks?
  • What’s in a Name?
    Vital Posts
    A lot. When it comes to honoring someone in a public way, people may take it personally. People in my hometown are crying ‘foul’ over a recent school committee decision related to naming the football field after a respected teac…
  • Creating a Legacy Society
    Tools
    A Legacy Society is not only a great way to encourage planned gifts, but a way for those who provide for the church to witness to their faith. Here's how to create an informational brochure and enrollment form.
  • Administering Charitable Endowments
    Vestry Papers
    Healthy endowments play a significant role in the long-term stability of a church. Part of the stewardship responsibility of a vestry, therefore, is to understand the rules associated with the proper administration of endowment funds.
  • What About Endowment Spending Policies?
    Vestry Papers
    There are two basic ways of distributing money from your endowment fund: an “income-only” policy, or a “total return” policy.
  • Swimming Naked
    Vestry Papers
    Swimming naked, you say? How is that like using endowment income for operating needs? Answer: No one notices ‘til the tide goes out.
  • No Endowment Fund Means Just That
    Vestry Papers
    Two stories, one problem. Both were small churches. Perhaps they thought they were too small to have an endowment fund. Or perhaps they thought the vestry would deal with a major bequest when the time came. In both cases, the churches quickly establi…
  • Dealing with Risk and Falling Markets...
    Vestry Papers
    In bad times and good, the principles that vestries should follow in their fiduciary oversight of long-term investments are the same. Especially when the markets are down, it is essential not to lose your head.
  • A Good Crisis is a Good Opportunity
    Vestry Papers
    The latest saying making the rounds is, “Never waste a good crisis.” And with good reason, for whether congregations find their budgets funded through pledges or endow- ment income or both, vestries are facing hard financial decisions.
  • Investing Your Endowment
    Webinars
    This webinar will look at how your investment policy statement, spending rules, and asset allocation are intimately related. Vestries, finance committees and other leaders in Episcopal churches and organizations are called upon to make important deci…
  • Spending Rules for Endowments
    Webinars
    Using proper spending rules with your endowment is key to maintaining confidence and trust with your congregation and a key component of proper endowment management. Participants will learn about policies and practices to protect, manage, and grow yo…
  • Basics of Planned Giving
    Webinars
    This webinar focuses on the basics of planned giving, how it differs from annual stewardship and capital campaigns, how your parish can build endowment through life income gifts, and you will have a plan of action by the end of the web conference. We…
  • Why Endowment Structure Matters
    Webinars
    Getting the structure of your endowment right is often the key to its success. If you want to encourage legacy gifts to your endowment, you need to be able to explain how the money will be used, invested and spent, and who is in charge of making thos…
  • Basics of Endowments
    Webinars
    This webinar reviews basic principles and best practices for endowment management. You will examine important, and easy to use, documents to use for structuring your endowment and for clarifying its purpose. Participants will also learn about endowme…
  • Why Endowment Structure Matters
    Webinars
    Getting the structure of your endowment right is often the key to its success. If you want to encourage legacy gifts to your endowment, you need to be able to explain how the money will be used, invested and spent, and who is in charge of making thos…
  • Spending Rules for Endowments
    Webinars
    Using proper spending rules with your endowment is key to maintaining confidence and trust with your congregation and a key component of proper endowment management. Participants will learn about policies and practices to protect, manage, and grow yo…
  • Basics of Endowments
    Webinars
    This webinar reviews basic principles and best practices for endowment management. You will examine important, and easy to use, documents to use for structuring your endowment and for clarifying its purpose. Participants will also learn about endowme…
  • Basics of Endowments
    Webinars
    This workshop reviews basic principles and best practices for endowment management. You will examine important, and easy to use, documents to use for structuring your endowment and for clarifying its purpose. Participants will also learn about endowm…
  • Basics of Planned Giving
    Webinars
    This web conference focuses on the basics of planned giving, how it differs from annual stewardship and capital campaigns, how your parish can build endowment through life income gifts, and you will have a plan of action by the end of the web confere…
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