Connectional Giving for United Methodists
(Adapted from The United Methodist Handbook. Order free copies at shop.umc.org.)
Learn more about each of these channels of giving at www.umcgiving.org.
The General Conference establishes budgets for the apportioned funds. Find these in "Our Financial Commitment 2013-16," which can be read or downloaded from the General Council on Finance and Administration website, www.gcfa.org. The support of these is divided among the annual conferences, based on a specific formula. Each annual conference, using its own approved formula, divides these fund requests, along with the conference's administrative and benevolence fund requests, among the local churches.
"Payment in full of these apportionments by local churches and annual conferences is the first benevolent responsibility of the Church." (The Book of Discipline 2012, Par. 812)
World Service Fund: Is basic to the connectional giving program of The United Methodist Church and helps to build new churches, pay missionary salaries, expand Bible studies, provide leadership for youth ministry, develop resources for local churches and annual conferences and much more. Provides basic support for the work of the general boards of church and society, discipleship, global ministries and higher education and ministry, and the general commissions on religion and race, status and role of women, United Methodist Men and United Methodist Communications.
Africa University Fund: Supports general operating expenses, including faculty and staff salaries and infrastructure support, for the first fully accredited United Methodist-related educational institution in Africa established by General Conference. Africa University is in Zimbabwe.
Black College Fund: Continues work that began with the Freedmen's Aid Society. Organized following the Civil War, the society helped to establish more than 70 schools to educate people newly freed from slavery. Eleven United Methodist-related institutions remain and receive support.
Episcopal Fund: Pays for the salaries, office and travel expenses of 46 active bishops in the United States and 20 serving assignments in the central conferences (Africa, Europe and the Philippines); also provides pension and health-benefit coverage.
General Administration Fund: Pays the expenses of General Conference, the Judicial Council, special commissions and committees constituted by General Conference and other administrative agencies and activities approved by General Conference.
Interdenominational Cooperation Fund: Enables United Methodists to participate in ecumenical and interreligious organizations advocating for unity among the worldwide Christian church.
Ministerial Education Fund: Supports the recruitment and education of ordained and licensed ministers. The maximum amount possible goes directly for programs and services at United Methodist seminaries, continuing education of ordained, licensed and diaconal ministers and courses of study.
The Advance: Lets contributors designate support for more than 800 projects related to the General Board of Global Ministries. Individuals, local churches and others may donate. One hundred percent of every gift goes to the project. Administrative costs come from other sources.
World Service Special Gifts: Enable general agencies to appeal directly for specific project funding. One hundred percent of every gift goes to the designated project.
SPECIAL SUNDAYS WITH OFFERINGS
Six churchwide special Sundays give people the opportunity to make offerings to support special programs. Learn more about the purpose and recipients of the offerings in the January/February 2014 issue of Interpreter, at Interpreter OnLine and at www.umcgiving.org.
Although churches may observe the special Sundays when most convenient, the next dates set by General Conference for the observances are:
World Communion Sunday, Oct. 5.
United Methodist Student Day, Nov. 30.
Human Relations Day, Jan. 18, 2015.
One Great Hour of Sharing, March 15, 2015.
Native American Ministries Sunday, April 19, 2015.
Peace with Justice Sunday, May 31, 2015.