Help support St John's Church
Where we are
After years of building works and a sense of being ‘on the road’ for St John’s, we are now where we feel called to be: back in our own building and with a growing church community
In 2022, we:
• Completed the building works
• Appointed our new priest
• Completed renovations on the church flat
• Provided regular Sunday worship in the church, beautifully enhanced by the use of the new organ
• Hosted various events in the church and enabled the St John’s English Library to flourish
in our buildings with its own events and meetings
• Enabled various groups to use the church buildings
• Paid the bills!
Thanks to the generosity of our church members and the wider community, we have come a long way!
Now, for the first time in years, for 2023 we have a budget which reflects our ‘post building’ context.
Our budget for 2023
Based on past experience, our 2023 budget income is 39k€ however we antipicate our expenses to be around 66k€.
The reality of our budget shows that we are operating an annual deficit of around 27k€. Our reserves are around 110k€.
If we change nothing, we will have run out of money in around four years. We want to change this in the coming years for the church to continue to survive and thrive. We trust and pray that with everyone’s help, we can!
For example (and ignoring any additional tax advantages noted below):
• If 10 people each gave 20€ per week more, that would raise an additional 10,000€!
• If 50 people each gave 10€ per week more, that would wipe out the deficit!
Where we are going
As an English-speaking Anglican church in the heart of Menton, we are a friendly community of different nationalities, seeking to know, live and proclaim God’s love in Menton and the surrounding areas. We aspire to welcome everyone as they are, and seek to be a place where everyone – no matter where they are on the journey of faith – can find friendship and support.
We are blessed with our wonderful committed church community, and want to grow both in depth and numbers. We want to reach out and become ever more welcoming, faithful, inspiring, hopeful and joyful. But to do this, we need over time to be able to balance our budgets!
We are asking you to consider and review your giving as we work towards making our finances more sustainable for the long-term.
How you can help
‘We love because God first loved us.’ 1 John 4.19
Generosity and giving is a fundamental marker of Christian spirituality. We are called to give from a sense of abundance, knowing that we already have received the gift of life ourselves.
A famous prayer of St Francis says
‘it is in giving that we receive.’
We all have different circumstances and we all have different gifts. Giving is not just a matter of giving our money; it is about giving of ourselves, our time and our energy. Each of us is called to discern what the right balance is in each of our lives. But we are all called to give!
Historically, the church has often taught the biblical principle of tithing, suggesting people give 10% of their income. Of course, we might want to give to many charities and initiatives. We are all so different, with such different circumstances, so it is not appropriate to be too legalistic in our thinking.
Fundamentally, we are called to give! (Details on how to give are below.)
Here are some principles that might help:
• Generosity is part of our faith and our giving should come from a sense of abundance
• Our giving needs to be realistic about the needs of our church community life
• Our giving needs to be planned so that we balance appropriately the needs of our families and loved ones, our communities, and ourselves
• We are not all called to give the same amount. Within the church community, there should be a sense of equally shared sacrifice: those with more can afford to give more; those with less can give less!
How to respond
Please prayerfully consider your giving over this month, and let us know what you are able to give now and over the next year. We understand we each have different calls on our finances, and we want to be sensitive to everyone’s circumstances.
Once you are ready to respond, please contact our treasurer Bob Edwards, either in church or by email, to tell him of any gift you will be making and Bob can provide more details as needed. The information will be completely confidential to Bob. firstname.lastname@example.org, +44 7796 330370
Tax efficient giving
If your donation (one-off or regular payment) is by bank transfer (rather than anonymously into the basket), it is traceable and tax benefits are available.
• If you are a French tax payer, your gift will lead to a significant reduction on your tax bill, so you could consider giving more!
• If you are a British tax payer, the church can claim back Gift Aid on your GBP gift, increasing its value to the church.
Frequently asked questions
-Would it help if I left a legacy to the church in my will? Yes!
There are tax efficient ways to do this, both in France and the UK. Please ask Bob for details. email@example.com, +44 7796 330370
-Can’t the Diocese in Europe or Church of England help St John’s out?
In the Church of England in Europe, churches are entirely sustained by their own income. We receive no income from the Diocese. The Diocese does make discretionary grants, but these are for one-off initiatives, and are never to cover recurring operational expenditure. If St John’s ever got to the point of not having sufficient funds, we might have access to a hardship fund but this would only be for a temporary ‘bridge.’ We need to be financially self- sustaining for the long term!
-Why does the church have to pay a share of its income to the Diocese in Europe?
We are part of the Church of England in the Diocese in Europe. Each church pays an annual amount, based on income and size of congregation, to help fund the Diocese. This covers such costs as senior clergy and central staff costs, communications, discretionary grants, legal costs and safeguarding. In England, the diocese pays the costs of parish priests, but each church pays a much higher share than we currently pay in the Diocese in Europe. In the Diocese in Europe, each church covers the costs of its priests, but we then pay comparatively less to the Diocese.
If you have other questions, please don’t hesitate to ask Bob, Chris or a member of Council.
firstname.lastname@example.org, +44 7796 330370