funding-the-mission-booklet-cover-151116The additional information on this page assumes you have already read the booklet ‘Funding the Mission’ which has been widely distributed and can be read online here.

You can also download a copy of this information in leaflet form here

Our Appeal will run from the First Sunday in Advent to Palm Sunday 2017. This is a long time. We hope that many parishioners will be able to respond promptly, but experience shows that it is necessary to give some people a chance to reflect on what they want or are in a position to do.

Thank you for all that you give to the parish – not just in money but more importantly by your prayers and active witness to the faith that we share. That may be by attendance in our parish churches, but it may also be at home or perhaps in carrying out other work in the community.

This Appeal is largely aimed to secure the future of our buildings. They give us a place to come together to worship, and a focal point from which many other parish activities can flow.

How big is our parish community?
About 320 people can attend Mass across our three churches, and there are also housebound people whom Eucharistic ministers visit. The number of baptised Catholics within our parish boundaries is probably several times that figure. You will know that we have particularly large numbers at Christmas and Easter when families are together and many people choose to attend Mass.

How many parish buildings are there?
Principally there are our three churches – Our Lady and St Patrick in Teignmouth (OLSP), St Agatha in Dawlish, and St Ignatius in Shaldon. Each of these has a presbytery. St Agatha also has a church hall with a car park. The last few years has been dominated by the re-ordering project at OLSP. However maintenance works have also been regularly carried out at the other two churches. OLSP and St Agatha were both built over 100 years ago, and are grade 2 listed. The location of St Ignatius means it also has sensitive planning features.

How does the parish look after them?
There is a buildings committee which is a sub-committee of the Parish Pastoral Council. This is currently being re-formed. It is supported by an independent chartered building surveyor, and it can get more general advice from the Diocesan Property Manager. We recently commissioned a survey of the buildings. This shows expected maintenance costs for the short, medium (2-5 years) and long (10 years) term. There are a number of uncertainties and many estimates and assumptions, but the general message is that over the next decade our maintenance costs are going to be substantial, perhaps as much as £300,000 (OLSP £55k, St Ignatius £50k, St Agatha’s £195k). This is mainly because of the age of the buildings, but also because we have to respond to changes (for example there is a proposal to let Dawlish presbytery which will first need significant renovation).

How much money does the parish currently have?
The parish accounts are published each year, and you may remember that for the last few years our annual income has managed to pay our annual costs, but the surplus has been small. This is before taking account of major buildings maintenance costs, broadly ranging in recent years from £10,000 to £50,000. These costs have been paid for out of our savings (‘Reserves’) which are therefore rapidly reducing. At the financial year end March 2016 we still had reserves of about £400,000. These are held in income bearing investments, so as we spend them, our annual income also reduces. Some investments are for specific purposes.

So what should we do, and what is the target?
There is no immediate problem. We can continue for a while to run our parish and maintain our buildings. However if we have to spend the sort of money that we have in the past and that the Survey predicts as continuing, at some point in the next 10 years we will run out of money. Our predecessors created funds to enable our current community to worship and spread the gospel. We in turn owe it to our successors to ensure that we pass on that position as well as we can. The Diocese kindly gave us £300,000 towards our re-ordering costs, so it is unlikely they will be able or think it fair to give us more money if we run out. If we are to pay for these building costs, then basic arithmetic suggests we ought to aim to increase our resources by about £30,000 a year (making £300,000 over 10 years). That is a huge increase from our present position as outlined opposite and below. Nevertheless we must start with that as a target, and if it is not achievable in the appeal this winter, let us at least take a major step towards it.

How do the Giving figures look at present?
In the last financial year:

  • 114 people gave £39,000 by bank standing order or by envelope; that is £6.58 per person per week, or 94p per day. Many of these give on behalf of family members who are also present, so it is not practical to say how many of the 320 those two groups represent
  • we also received £22,000 from the loose collection (number of donors unknown)
  • as a result of many of the above being tax payers, we recovered Tax of £14,000
  • that makes a total income of £75,000 [39+22+14].

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When you complete a Gift Aid form, you are not committing to paying a specific amount every week/month, you are just authorising the Diocese to reclaim tax on whatever you do give. Nevertheless most people (particularly of course those who pay by bank standing order) decide on an amount and pay it every time.

It may be that many of us have not changed our regular payments for a number of years. We are all grateful to those who maintained their level of giving despite the recession of 2008 and the subsequent difficult economic times. However now may well be the time for us all to review our level of giving.

Raymond Twohig,
Chair of All Saints Finance,
2 November 2016.

This appeal is focused on regular annual giving. There are also parishioners who give by means of a legacy on their death. If you want to find out more about this, please ask one of the volunteers at Mass how to get the relevant information…