Under Canon Law, the Parish Priest is required to appoint a Finance Committee to advise and assist him in the proper use of parish funds. There are also various requirements set down by the Diocese with regard to administration, levies and particular funds to be supported.
Offertory collections at Sunday Masses are the main source of income for the running of the parish, including the maintenance of the Parish Priest. it is possible to donate to Offertory Collections by GADS (Gift Aid Declarations). This enables the Parish to reclaim Income Tax paid by the donor.
33% of Sunday Offertory Collections is payable to Diocesan funds for the support of activities affecting the Diocese as a whole. The Diocese also requires that parishes support a number of charities on a regular (usually annual) basis.
The Parish has established a capital fund to provide for the proper and regular maintenance of the church, presbytery, hall and centre. There is a retiring collection for this once a month, and various other activities as announced from time to time in the Parish Newsletter.
Simple ways of adding to Parish Funds
Apart from offertory collections, there are several ways of increasing contributions to Parish funds without undue strain on the donor. The principal methods are Gift Aid Declaration and the 100 Club.
Catholic Schools quota
There is a requirement for all parishes to support Catholic schools in the Diocese. The amount to be contributed by each parish is set by the Diocese: ours is 24% of the offertory collection.
In Stowmarket, the parish has undertaken to support charities in developing countries. In the main this is achieved by retiring collections for approved charities, individual donations and APF collecting boxes.
We are committed to support the Parish of Siem Reap, Cambodia, with which our Deanery is twinned.
The collection on Maundy Thursday is traditionally for the poor and needy, and a number of other collections are taken up for a range of home and overseas charities, national disaster funds etc. Notice of these is given in the Parish Newsletter.
The Diocese requires that parishes support the following charities on a regular (usually annual) basis:
- Apostleship of the Sea
- Association for the Propagation of the Faith
- Catholic Association for Racial Justice
- Catholic Communications Service
- Catholic Education Service
- Catholic Fund for Overseas Development (CAFOD)
- Day for Life
- Diocesan Youth Service
- The Diocese of East Anglia Dependent Priests’ Fund
- Holy Land Shrines (on Good Friday)
- Training our Future Priests
- Missionary Appeal
- Pax Christi
- Peter’s Pence
- St Edmund’s Fund
A club (limited to 100 persons) exists whereby members by £2 monthly. Every three months a draw is made for four cash prizes with profits to Parish funds. Contributions to this club may also be included in Gift Aid.
If you pay income tax and sign a Gift Aid Declaration form, the parish is able to recover the tax you have paid on your weekly offertory and certain other contributions. There is only one form to sign and envelopes are provided in which to put your offerings. 20% of tax reclaimed on Gift Aid is retained by the Diocese which, as the registered charity, handles the administration of the scheme.