UMC 101: The Apportionment System
The total amounts of funds needed to support worldwide ministries of the United Meth-odist Church are established by General Conference. These totals are apportioned to annual conferences based on a formula that includes: 1) net expenditures of local churches, including capital expenditures, interest payments, and benevolence giving; 2) per-capita income for counties in the annual conference and local church operating costs; and 3) a base percentage set by General Conference. On average, 70 percent of the local churches pay 100 percent of their general church apportionments and 3 percent do not pay any at all. The remaining 27 percent pay something less than 100 percent.
Each annual conference establishes its own formula to assess local churches for general church apportionments and annual conference, episcopal area and jurisdictional costs.
Of every dollar, 84.3 cents is used in local churches, 12.4 cents supports regional ministries and 3.3 cents supports general church ministries. For more information, see the web site of the General Council on Finance and Administration.
--The Rev. J. Richard Peck is a retired clergy member of the New York Annual Conference, three-time editor of the Daily Christian Advocate of General Conference and editor of the 2000 Book of Resolutions.