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The Church of Ireland

The Church Of Ireland
General Synod 1999


THE CHURCH OF IRELAND

THE REPRESENTATIVE CHURCH BODY REPORT

1999

 

THE REPRESENTATIVE BODY

OF THE

CHURCH OF IRELAND

 INDEX

Administration Expenses

Allocations Committee

Allocations Reserve

Allocations Recommended

Asset Management

Audit Committee

Auditors’ Report

Balance Sheet

Bequest, Form of

Cash Flow Statement

Children’s Allowances

Christian Stewardship

Church of Ireland House (Dublin)

Church of Ireland Youth Council

Church’s Ministry of Healing

Church Plate

Churches, Grants for Repairs

Clergy Pensions Fund (1), (2)

Clergy Remuneration and Benefits

Clerical Relief

Contributions

Covenant Subscriptions

Deans of Residences, etc (1), (2)

Deeds of Covenant

Diocesan and Parochial Funds

Donations and Bequests (1), (2)

Education – Board of

Episcopal Stipends and Expenses (1), (2)

Ethical Investments

European Monetary Union (EMU)

Executive Committee

Expenses of Members (Central Committees)

General Funds (1), (2), (3)

General Synod Funds

Gift Aid Scheme

Income and Expenditure (General Revenue)

Interest – Deposit rates

Investment Committee

Investments and Markets

Investments – Valuations & Returns

Irish – Regular Sunday Services in

Lambeth Conference Meetings

Legal Advisory Committee

Legal Defence Insurance

Library (1), (2)

Library and Archives Committee (1), (2)

Locomotory Allowances

Operating Expenses and Financial Review

Parochial and Diocesan Funds

Pensions & Related Funds

Plans for Glebes

Property Committee

Property and Trusts

RB Unit Trusts

Reserves

Resolutions recommended to General Synod 1999

St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin

Specific Trusts (1), (2), (3)

Stipends Committee

Stipends – Minimum Approved (1), (2)

Stipends (Survey)

Supplemental Fund

Theological College (1), (2)

Training of Ordinands

Trustee’s Responsibilities (Statement of)


APPENDICES

APPENDIX A - Accessions of Archives and Manuscripts to the Representative Church Body Library, 1998

APPENDIX B - Extract from the audited accounts of The Church of Ireland Theological College

APPENDIX C - Total Income applied by the Representative Church Body in 1998; Donations and Bequests received by the Representative Church Body in 1998 for Parochial and Diocesan Endowment.

THE REPRESENTATIVE CHURCH BODY OF THE CHURCH OF IRELAND
FINANCIAL STATEMENTS
YEAR ENDED 31 DECEMBER 1998


 THE REPRESENTATIVE BODY OF THE CHURCH OF IRELAND

The Representative Body is composed of the following 60 members and the attendance of each at the 4 meetings of the Representative Body held during the year 1998 is denoted by the figure placed before each name:

 

 A:  ARCHBISHOPS and BISHOPS: ex officio MEMBERS (12)

3 Most Rev RHA Eames, Archbishop of Armagh The See House, Cathedral Close, Armagh BT61 7EE
2 Most Rev WNF Empey, Archbishop of Dublin The See House, 17 Temple Road, Dublin 6
4 Most Rev RL Clarke, Bishop of Meath and Kildare Bishop’s House, Moyglare, Maynooth, Co Kildare
1 Right Rev BDA Hannon, Bishop of Clogher The See House, Fivemiletown, Co Tyrone BT75 0QP
3 Right Rev J Mehaffey, Bishop of Derry and Raphoe The See House, Culmore Road, Londonderry BT48 8JF
2 Right Rev HC Miller, Bishop of Down and Dromore The See House, 32 Knockdene Park South, Belfast BT5 7AB
2 Right Rev JE Moore, Bishop of Connor Bishop’s House, 113 Upper Road, Greenisland, Carrickfergus, Co Antrim BT38 8RR
2 Right Rev MHG Mayes, Bishop of Kilmore The See House, Cavan
2 Right Rev RCA Henderson, Bishop of Tuam Bishop’s House, Knockglass, Crossmolina, Co Mayo
2 Right Rev JRW Neill, Bishop of Cashel and Ossory The Palace, Kilkenny
3* Right Rev RA Warke, Bishop of Cork, Cloyne and Ross The Palace, Bishop Street, Cork
2 Right Rev EF Darling, Bishop of Limerick and Killaloe Bishop’s House, North Circular Road, Limerick

* Retired 31 December 1998

 

B:  ELECTED MEMBERS (36)

 [Every member elected, otherwise than to a casual vacancy, must retire from office on the First Day of the Third Ordinary Session of the Diocesan Synod which shall be held after his election, in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution, Chapter X, Section 3.]
Cashel
and
Ossory
3 Rev WBA Neill, The Rectory, Dalkey, Co Dublin
2* DRT Bate, 26 Grosvenor Terrace, John’s Hill, Waterford
3 The O’Morchoe, Ardgarry, Gorey, Co Wexford
Kilmore 3 Ven WD Johnston, Archdeacon of Kilmore, The Rectory, Belturbet, Co Cavan
2 Mrs HR Hicks, Garvary Lodge, 49 Teemore Road, Derrylin, Co Fermanagh BT92 9QB
1* Mrs DM Burns, Richmount, Carrickboy, Longford
Cork 4 Ven REB White, Archdeacon of Cork, The Rectory, Carrigaline Road, Douglas, Cork
4 JE Stanley, Scart House, Belgooly, Co Cork
4 Canon JLB Deane, Gartan, Bandon, Co Cork
Derry 4 Ven DS McLean, The Rectory, 80 Northland Road, Londonderry BT48 0AL
0* S Gamble, 14 Spruce Road, Dysart, Strabane, Co Tyrone
4 JHD Livingston, 28 Station Road, Garvagh, Co Londonderry
Armagh 3 Ven RG Hoey, Archdeacon of Armagh, The Rectory, 2 Maytown Road, Bessbrook, Co Down BT35 7LY
2 JI Davison, 6 Church Road, Portadown, Co Armagh BT63 5HT
1* GA Forbes, 3 Drumnacanvey Road, Gilford, Co Armagh
Clogher 3 Ven CT Pringle, Archdeacon of Clogher, Rossorry Rectory, Derrygonnelly Road, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh
3 JWC Allen, Aughaninch, Newtownbutler, Co Fermanagh
0 Mrs ME Loane, Narrabeem, Crevenish Road, Kesh, Co Fermanagh
Dublin 1 Ven GCS Linney, Archdeacon of Dublin, St Paul’s Vicarage, Silchester Road, Glenageary, Co Dublin
0 P Harrison, Holmsdale, Church Road, Greystones, Co Wicklow
2 DG Perrin, Barn Close, Ballybrack Road, Shankill, Co Dublin
Down 1 Very Rev DR Chillingworth, 8 Upper Church Lane, Portadown, Craigavon, Co Armagh BT63 5JE
3 JF Rankin, Gort-na-Grian, 111 Ballylesson Road, Ballylesson, Belfast 8
4 WL Dermott, 8 Killinchy Road, Comber, Newtownards, Co Down BT23 5SW
Connor - Vacant
4 HT Morrison, Springhill, 60a Glenavy Road, Lisburn, Co Antrim BT28 3UT
1 RH Kay, 19 Upper Station Road, Greenisland, Carrickfergus, Co Antrim
Limerick
and
Killaloe
2 Ven MJD Shannon, Archdeacon of Ardfert, Kilcolman Rectory, Miltown, Co Kerry
4 WT Morrow, 16 Kilbane, Castletroy, Co Limerick
3 RW Benson, Templehollow, Killaloe, Co Clare
Tuam 3 Ven AM Previté, Archdeacon of Tuam, The Rectory, Church Hill, Clifden, Co Galway
4 Mrs CH Thomson, Luimnagh West, Corrandulla, Co Galway
2 DCD O’Hara, Annaghmore, Collooney, Co Sligo
Meath
and
Kildare
4 Ven PHA Lawrence, St Mary’s Rectory, Geashill, Co Offaly
4 JK Dunne, South Green, Kildare
2 RF Colton, Ballycluff, Tullamore, Co Offaly

 

*Elected 1998

 

 C:  CO-OPTED MEMBERS (12)

0 JH Stanley, Quinagh, 1 Laurel Lane, Station Road, Craigavad, Co Down
4 CG Walker, Belmont, 59 Monkstown Road, Blackrock, Co Dublin
0 TB McCormick, 11 Ontario Terrace, Dublin 6
1 JR McConnell, 10 Cadogan Park, Belfast BT9 6HG
3 EWR Cookman, Orchard Lodge, Raphoe, Co Donegal
2 His Honour JG Buchanan, Castlemount, Castleknock, Co Dublin
0 The Hon Mr Justice DNO Budd, 5 Rowan Park Avenue, Blackrock, Co Dublin
3 Professor TD Spearman, St Elmo, Marlborough Road, Glenageary, Co Dublin
3 JRB Hewat, Rathmichael Lodge, Shankill, Co Dublin
4 GC Richards, 32 St Alban’s Park, Dublin 4
2 GW Stirling, Annaghdown Lodge, Corrandulla, Co Galway
2 The O’Donovan, Hollybrook House, Skibbereen, Co Cork

The following are the names of those who retire in May 1999:

TB McCormick
CG Walker
GW Stirling
JH Stanley

 Note

In accordance with the Charter of Incorporation (1870) the Representative Body is composed of Ex-officio, Elected and Co-opted members. The Charter provided that the Ex-officio members shall be the Archbishops and Bishops, the Elected members shall consist of one clerical and two lay representatives for each diocese or union of dioceses presided over by one Bishop and that the Co-opted members shall consist of persons equal in number to the number of such dioceses for the time being. (See also Chapter X of the Constitution).

 

 COMMITTEES OF THE REPRESENTATIVE BODY

Membership details, number of meetings held between 1 January – 31 December 1998 and record of attendances are given hereunder.

  EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
(7 Meetings)

JRB Hewat (7)
(Chairman)

The Archbishop of Armagh (6)

The Archbishop of Dublin (4)

The Bishop of Derry (5)

Canon JLB Deane (5)

Professor TD Spearman (4)

The O’Donovan (6)

JR McConnell (6)

Ven CT Pringle (6)

Very Rev DR Chillingworth (6)

Rev WBA Neill (5)

Mrs CH Thomson (5)

JF Rankin (6)

GC Richards (5)

RW Benson (5)

 

  (3 Meetings)

Canon JLB Deane (3)
(Chairman)

The Archbishop of Armagh (3)

GC Richards (2)

WL Dermott (3)

Very Rev DR Chillingworth (3)

 

  INVESTMENT COMMITTEE
(7 Meetings)

Professor TD Spearman (7)
(Chairman)

HT Morrison (7)

JH Stanley (6)

GW Stirling (5)

The O’Morchoe (6)

TB McCormick (4)

WL Dermott (7)

 

  PROPERTY COMMITTEE
(6 Meetings)

JR McConnell (6)
(Chairman)

RH Kay (5)

Rev WBA Neill (4)

DCD O’Hara (4)

P Harrison (2)

Ven REB White (4)

The O’Morchoe (6)

Ven WD Johnston (5)

* Ven DS McLean (1)

 

  STIPENDS COMMITTEE
(4 Meetings)

The O’Donovan (4)
(Chairman)

The Bishop of Cashel (3)

Ven CT Pringle (4)

RW Benson (4)

CG Walker (4)

JE Stanley (3)

Mrs HR Hicks (1)

* Ven DS McLean (1)

* DG Perrin (1)

 

  LEGAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
(0 Meetings)

His Honour JG Buchanan (0)
(Chairman)

JW Wilson (0)

The Hon Mr Justice DNO Budd (0)

AC Aston (0)

RLK Mills (0)

RL Nesbitt (0)

LJW MacCann (0)

 

  (3 Meetings)

JF Rankin (2)
(Chairman)

The Bishop of Meath (2)

The Archbishop of Dublin (1)

Ven RE Bantry White (3)

Mrs CH Thomson (2)

Advisory Members – WD Linton (2)

– Dr K Milne (3)

– Rev Canon JR Bartlett (3)

 

* Elected 1998


"Almighty God, we meet in your presence to exercise stewardship of the resources of this Church. Grant to us a clear mind and judgement in all things, a willingness to seek your will for the Church and an awareness of the trust and responsibility given to us. Guide us with your wisdom and lead us in the paths of truth. This we ask through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen."

 – Prayer read at the commencement of all meetings of the Executive Committee.
 INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY

The main events of the year 1998 for the Representative Body were:

  • the refurbishment of Church of Ireland House in Rathmines (expected to be completed by April 1999) and the relocation of offices and staff to temporary accommodation in the Royal Hospital, Donnybrook, Dublin 4;
  • the unprecedented volatility in financial markets resulting from the prolonged "bull market" in Western markets, accompanied by turmoil in Asia and recession in Japan;
  • the formal introduction of the new single currency in Europe accompanied by substantial reductions in interest rates and talk of "harmonisation" of tax regimes;
  • a marginal increase in income in 1998 foreshadowing real risks of substantial reductions in future income levels due to the abolition/phasing out of tax credits in the United Kingdom and in Ireland as well as redemption of high yielding Government bonds and reinvestment in lower yielding securities;
  • the completion of a survey and agreement to recommend to the General Synod that stipends should be increased by more than 15% over the years 2000/2001 in addition to routine annual increases;
  • balance sheet appreciation as asset values exceeded £337m at the year end (up by 16% over 1997) reflecting growth and recovery of stock market valuations in the last quarter.
 CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY

The Representative Body, as a representative trustee for the Church, strives to operate within a framework of sound practice based on principles of integrity and accountability. Its historic and primary purpose is to support the Church’s ministry with legal accountability to both Church and State for its governance of property and financial assets. Over the long term, the Representative Body seeks to maintain stability in its financial planning and to work for improvements in clergy stipends and pensions.

 AUDITORS/AUDIT COMMITTEE

The Audit Committee, consisting of four members of the Representative Body appointed by the Executive Committee, meets twice yearly with the external auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The Audit Committee, together with management and the external auditors, meet to review:

  • the annual financial statements and results;
  • material changes in accounting policies and practices (if applicable);
  • any compliance issues relevant to accounting standards;
  • any major judgmental issue arising from the formal audit;
  • any matter related to the conduct of the audit and/or any difficulties experienced or restrictions imposed on the scope of the audit or access to required information;
  • any significant business risks or exposures;
  • the adequacy of internal controls including computerised information systems and security;
  • any legal or regulatory matters which may have a material impact on the financial statements;
 OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW 1998
  • Income on the General Fund and on reserves combined to give an increase of circa 4% over 1997 (including a small currency exchange loss in the period).
  • An increasing emphasis on equity investment in European markets by investment managers is pointing to lower income returns in the future since, typically, European mainland companies tend to adopt more conservative dividend payment policies than their UK or Irish counterparts. Lower interest rates and bond yields will also impact on portfolio returns in the future (if assumptions are realised, but the future is uncertain and difficult to anticipate at this time).
  • A protocol amending the Double Taxation Convention between Ireland and the United Kingdom was signed in November 1998. One of the key changes is the abolition of entitlement to repayment of tax credits on and from 6 April 1999. In Ireland, the tax credit was halved in December 1997 and will be abolished from 6 April 1999 while, in the UK the tax credit will be reduced to a rate of 10% with effect from that date, phasing out to a "nil" rate over the next few years.

The impact of these tax credit changes will result in a significant reduction in income in 1999. Combined with income changes due to the strategic realignment of investments and the other matters referred to above, a total reduction in 1999 income of circa IR£500/600,000 may be anticipated (based on current disposition of assets).

  • Revised staff structures, approved following the consultancy review carried out in 1996/97, have been fully implemented in 1998/99. The impact on operating costs associated with these changes is reflected in the increased operating costs disclosed in the financial statements. The increased comparative costs reflect the integration of RCB, Synod and Education staff resources into one single administrative and costing structure in 1998 combined with an increase in staff levels compared to the previous two years due to retirements, resignations and positions left vacant during and prior to the consultancy review. Costs in absolute terms have increased but there are also additional costs in 1998 consequent upon the relocation to Donnybrook, an Inland Revenue audit of covenant records at parish level and in relation to investment management fees due to increased asset values and/or the appointment of new managers in early 1998.
  • The net overall outcome for 1998 was a surplus of IR£3.067m less allocations equivalent to IR£2.614m. The balance has been distributed to Reserves including a further transfer of IR£320,000 for redevelopment and refurbishment of Church House and a special transfer of IR£123,000 to the Clergy Pensions Fund.
  • Apart from the anticipated reduction in investment income referred to above, there will also be the "knock on" effect of the special increases in stipends planned for the years 2000 and 2001. The Representative Body is committed in principle to supporting the actuarial cost of financing parity of pensions for existing pensioners (in relation to these specific increases) by means of a capital transfer or transfers from the General Fund to the Clergy Pension Fund(s) subject to formal consents and approvals being granted in due course.
  In summary, a sharp downturn in income is almost certain to be experienced, at least in the short term, but over the longer term it is hoped to maintain income at a level commensurate with priorities and commitments.  INVESTMENTS AND MARKETS
  • The year 1998 proved to be one of the most dramatic years ever in the financial markets with spectacular rises, falls and subsequent recoveries in equity markets around the globe notwithstanding a constant stream of corporate profit warnings and analyst downgrades of forecasts of economic growth. This paradox of declining profit expectations and rising valuations largely reflected the powerful influence of interest rates on share prices as well as "merger mania" and high levels of liquidity.
  • The US market continued to produce outstanding returns notwithstanding a marked deterioration in the world economy in 1998 and the fallout from the Russian crisis in late September. Technology stocks drove the market throughout the year while the proposed merger of Exxon and Mobil will create the world’s largest ever corporate transaction.
  • In Japan, the NIKKEI index fell by 9% while the European equity markets produced gains of 20% over the year. The possibility of a single European equity market in due course is reflected in restructuring of portfolios by fund managers while the introduction of the single currency (the Euro) was a momentous event leading to co-ordinated reductions in interest rates across the participating countries.
  • The prospects for corporate profitability in the United Kingdom deteriorated as fierce competitive pressures from cheap overseas imports and the persistent strength of Sterling decimated profits in the manufacturing sector. Consumer and corporate confidence remained weak and expectations of growth for 1999 have been cut back to 1%-1.5%. Nevertheless, the equity market has been remarkably resilient and the FTSE 100 returned 17.5% for the year as a whole.
  • The Irish equity market was dominated by the financial stocks and exaggerated share price movements driven by the impetus towards the single currency, falling interest rates and continued economic growth. Public finances are extremely healthy, inflationary pressures emerged and receded while skills shortages and rising house prices remain a cause for concern. Similarly the potential reductions in grant aid and structural/social grants from the EU will restrain growth in the longer term. The equity market returned 25% for the year.
  • Valuations of the various portfolios and comparative figures at year end were as follows:

 Portfolio

Valuations

 Total Return

 1998

 1997

General Funds
  • UK and Foreign

 £82,003,200

 £74,544,970

 +14.5%

  • Irish

 IR£24,554,204

IR£18,849,381 +34.2%
Clergy Pensions Fund
  • Northern Ireland
£38,760,730 £33,939,888 +15.2%
  • Republic of Ireland
IR£35,510,810 IR£30,854,004 +15.9%
Specific Trusts
  • UK and Foreign
£22,490,602 £22,198,870 +5.9%
  • Irish
IR£51,195,697 IR£40,706,186 +45.3%
IR£14,781,248 IR£11,735,677 +27.1%
  • RB General Unit Trust (RI)
IR£34,433,081 IR£23,924,055 +21.2%
  • RB General Unit Trust (NI)
£8,574,250 £7,301,952 +9.3%

The underlying market value of the combined funds (expressed in Irish currency) increased over the year from IR£285,332,553 (translated at IR£1 = £0.8664) to IR£329,983,561 (translated at IR£1 = £0.8957). The overall gain of circa IR£45m includes an unrealised currency exchange gain of IR£19m.

The comparable total return performances of relevant equity markets in 1998 was: Ireland 25.5% UK FT ALL Share 13.7% UK FT100 17.5%.

The General Funds (UK and Foreign), Clergy Pensions Fund (Northern Ireland) and the RB General Unit Trust (NI) are managed from London by Lazard Asset Management.

The Clergy Pensions Fund (Republic of Ireland) is managed by Bank of Ireland Asset Management.

All other portfolios are managed by RCB staff reporting to the Investment Committee. General policy or strategy is to focus on capital and income growth to optimise the long term total return for the RCB and its trust beneficiaries.

The Investment Committee meets with its external managers on a regular basis to review policy, performance and investment strategy.

The Investment Committee continued to develop and review its approach to issues of ethical investment, consulting with the Executive Committee on a regular basis and with the Representative Body as a whole in December 1998. The following statement of investment policy was adopted by the Representative Body at the December meeting:

As trustees, the Representative Church Body has responsibilities to preserve Church funds and to limit or restrict financial risks. These are legal responsibilities but in addition it tries to take account of issues of ethical concern and to be sensitive to strongly held views of members of the Church. The RCB seeks to maintain a balance between ethical considerations commensurate with the Church’s Christian outlook and legal obligations as trustees in seeking the best financial returns.

In general terms the RCB has achieved its objectives by concentrating on the integrity of the management of companies rather than by excluding certain activities where often these form only part of a company’s business.

Ethical issues, of their nature, can be subjective. Issues are not always easily defined and the consequences of overly restrictive policies not always understood. The RCB has restricted investment from time to time in consultation with its professional advisers in Dublin and London and will continue to do so in the context of its ongoing ethical responsibilities and awareness. For example, only in exceptional circumstances would there be any involvement in options, currency hedging or other derivatives and then only with express permission. Neither is borrowing permitted to increase investment with a risk/reward exposure.

Given the complex structures of many companies and their diversified subsidiary interests some will have business interests in areas the RCB might otherwise wish to avoid. Disinvestment will be considered if these interests become a major proportion of the focus or business activity of the company; the RCB does not set out to invest in unethical enterprises nor does it support illegal business activities or practices. It seeks to invest in companies which will develop their business and generate reasonable investment returns to the shareholders, while having proper concern for the interests of customers, employees and suppliers.

The RCB will continue to monitor and to review its investments including an ethical assessment at least once each year. Ethical awareness based on fair and informed judgements is an integral part of the investment process in keeping with our Christian ethos and witness.

The Investment Committee, which met in February 1999 with the proposer and seconder of an ethical motion to General Synod last year, also monitors the reports and qualitative research of the Ethical Investment Working Group in England, which serves the Church Commissioners, the Central Board of Finance and Pensions Board.

 ALLOCATIONS RECOMMENDED TO THE GENERAL SYNOD 1999
  • Allocations recommended this year amount to IR£2,614,349 (Sterling allocations translated at £1 = IR£0.8957). As usual, the major proportion of these allocations is to support the stipendiary ministry and retired clergy/surviving spouses. The amounts listed hereunder represent the net amounts required to meet current commitments after taking into account income from endowment funds, the episcopal levy and an anticipated contribution from the Priorities Fund towards the cost of training ordinands at The Church of Ireland Theological College (see commentary).
  • Recommendations are as follows:
GROUP A
IR£ £
Episcopal Stipends and Expenses 457,311 343,970
less Episcopal Levy (134,948) (167,536)
_________ _________
322,363 176,434
Deans of Residences/University Chaplains 54,158 96,438
Clerical Relief
33,500 17,800
  • Central Church Fund
- -
  • Discretionary Grants
1,500 1,500
Stipend Fund - -
St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin 15,750 -
Clergy Endowment Assurance 2,020 2,800
_________ _________
429,291 294,972
_________ _________
GROUP B
Clergy Pensions Fund - Escalation 205,431 288,040
Supplemental Fund Benefits
  • Retired Clergy, Widows, Spouses
159,902 13,556
Discretionary Grants
  • Retired Clergy
- 8,000
  • Surviving Spouses
- 3,500
_________ _________
365,333 313,096
_________ _________
GROUP C
Training of Ordinands
  • Students’ Fees and Grants (net)
150,488 400
362,950 -
_________ _________
513,438 400
_________ _________
GROUP D
General Synod/Standing Committee 90,476 158,066
Board of Education 85,859 69,469
Church of Ireland Youth Council 60,000 60,000
_________ _________
236,335 287,535
_________ _________
GROUP E
Christian Stewardship - 50,000
Lambeth Conference/Regional Meetings 5,000 -
RCB Library 4,350 2,590
The Church’s Ministry of Healing 1,250 -
Regular Sunday Services in Irish 300 -
_________ _________
10,900 52,590
_________ _________
 Summary expressed in Irish pounds as per General Fund Revenue Statement
1999 1998
A Maintenance of the Stipendiary Ministry 758,611 710,689
B Retired Clergy and Surviving Spouses 714,888 749,338
C Training of Ordinands 513,884 473,223
D General Synod Activities 557,352 491,830
E Miscellaneous 69,614 72,162
____________ ____________
IR£2,614,349 IR£2,497,242
____________ ____________
  • Commentary on selected allocations

Training of ordinands

The Standing Committee of the General Synod has confirmed that the Priorities Fund will contribute towards the cost of support and training of men and women for the ordained ministry in 1999 and a sum of IR£85,000 has been anticipated in recommending a net allocation of IR£150,488. However, it has been intimated that the Standing Committee intends to phase out or cease to make an annual contribution under this heading in future as it seeks to divert resources into other areas of priority and to avoid recurrent annual expenditure.

Boards of Education

The budgets submitted by the Boards (Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland) show very substantial increases over last year. These include the costs of implementing the Safeguarding Trust programme and RE Curriculum and Children’s Ministry development initiatives.

Deans of Residences/University Chaplains

This allocation has been substantially increased to cover the extra costs of the chaplaincy at Jordanstown, which has become a full time appointment in its own right (previously this has been a part time post in association with the parish at Jordanstown).

Note

 Representatives of the Priorities Fund Committee and the Standing Committee met with the Allocations Committee in February 1999 to explore funding issues and relative responsibilities. Further discussion will be necessary to ensure overall co-ordination of funding priorities having regard to the anticipated downturn in investment income returns referred to earlier in this report.
 CLERGY REMUNERATION AND BENEFITS Stipends survey

In late 1997 the Stipends Committee sought the views and attitudes of the Diocesan Councils in relation to the following major issues:

The appropriate levels for minimum approved stipends and whether these should be linked to other sectors and whether they should be graded to reflect age, service or seniority.

The concept and need, if any, for a form of national pooling of resources (by levy or otherwise) to promote uniformity, to avoid anomalies in stipends and to assist outreach e.g. through the provision of some form of centralised support for assistant curacies.

The majority of dioceses were of the view that current stipends are approximately £2,000-£2,500 below what they regard as the appropriate level. The area of most concern is in relation to the ability of clergy to fund what they regard as their future retirement housing. They do not believe in general that it is appropriate to relate stipends to other vocation/professional salaries. If grading is to be applicable then their preference would be in relation to size of cure or number of souls. They feel that the introduction of a differential or incremental system would have a positive effect on both the vocational ministry and the appointments system.

There appears to be a general acceptance that the dioceses should, as a whole, accept some degree of collective responsibility (not defined) for ministry. If a national levy were to be used for such a purpose then something similar to the episcopal levy would be the most appropriate. A minority of dioceses are opposed to the concept of pooling of resources (reference was also made to the notion of "collective authority and influence in the strategic use of the ministry resource").

The Stipends Committee reported back to the Representative Body in 1998 following an evaluation of the survey and consultation with the Diocesan Secretaries. The Committee concluded that there was a good case for an increase in stipends to reflect the consensus view but that sufficient time should be given to dioceses to raise the necessary funding. Accordingly the Committee recommended that minimum approved stipends be increased by £2,400 in two stages over the years 2000 and 2001 (in addition to routine annual increases). This was agreed and the following minimum approved stipend levels for the year 2000 will, therefore, be recommended to the General Synod in 1999 (first of two upgrades):

Current
(1999)
New 
(2000)
Euro    
equivalent
Northern Ireland £15,225 £17,034 €24,334
Republic of Ireland IR£15,750 IR£17,423 €22,123

Notes

  1. IR£ exchange rate to the Euro = 0.787564 (fixed)
  2. £Stg rate taken to be = 0.70 (variable)
  3. The relationship between Sterling and the Euro will need to be monitored closely and value adjustments made if the United Kingdom decides to participate in the new single currency in due course.
  4. The recommended amounts for the year 2000 include routine annual increases of 4% (NI) and 3% (R of I).

The ongoing debate about the different levels of pence per mile rates determined for the two jurisdictions has highlighted the complexity of the situation.

Both the Automobile Association and the Civil Service rates for the Republic of Ireland support a generally held consensus view that motoring costs in the Republic are substantially greater than those applicable in Northern Ireland. This is increasingly at odds with the pence per litre prices displayed at petrol pumps in the different jurisdictions. The disparity in car fuel prices appears to reflect differences in Government taxation and environmental policies, while overall motoring costs reflect the commercial disparities of different markets – i.e. the large UK market versus the tiny Irish market produce different levels of unit costs dependent on scale. This is strikingly illustrated by AA statistics for the two jurisdictions.

The differences in the locomotory allowances between North and South have been compensated to an extent by the different levels of cumulative increases in minimum stipends since 1991 (26% in the Republic and 31% in Northern Ireland).

The Stipends Committee remains of the opinion that locomotory expenses should continue to be based on the official civil/public service rates as no convincing alternative is available. In the overall scheme of things, the combined values of stipend and locomotory allowance expressed to a common value such as the Euro or the US dollar produce a reasonable balance of equity and justice at the present time.

    Grants to Dioceses

A grant of IR£35,000 for 1998 plus IR£10,000 to assist in clearing a deficit was made to Limerick, Killaloe and Ardfert diocese.

A relativity adjustment was made to levels of episcopal stipends with effect from 1 January 1999. The Representative Body agreed that finance should also be provided to allow for pro rata increases to episcopal pensions and the Church of Ireland Pensions Board will submit enabling legislation for approval by the General Synod.

    Parity of Pensions

The Representative Body has agreed that the cost of financing parity of pensions for all existing pensioners, as a result of the special increases in minimum approved stipends planned for 2000 and 2001, be approved in principle subject to formal consents and approval in detail being granted in due course (costs to be established at next actuarial review in September 2000).

 PROPERTY AND TRUSTS General

The Representative Body, as legal owner and trustee of most of the property held by the Church of Ireland, executes a considerable number of legal agreements under seal every year. These include purchases, sales, leases, short term lettings, assignments, wayleaves, etc involving churches, glebes and other properties held for parishes, dioceses and other church bodies and organisations. The total number of approvals given in 1998 for church property acquisitions and disposals was 68 while 35 leases/letting agreements were authorised and 33 licences granted.

In most cases formal approval can only be given to property related transactions by the Representative Body when they have been sanctioned by the relevant diocesan authorities under the provisions of the Constitution which govern the management of church property generally. The regulations and rules concerning glebes and other parochial properties are contained in Chapter XIII while the role of the Representative Body in relation to property is defined in Part 2 of Chapter X of the Constitution. The statutory power to hold, sell or acquire property for the use of the Church is contained in the enabling provisions of the Irish Church Act (1869), the Charter of Incorporation (1870) and the Glebe Lands, Representative Church Body (Ireland) Act of 1875.

The function of the Representative Body in relation to property is that of legal trustee and, generally speaking, it has no beneficial interest in the properties which it holds.

The total value realised from all sales of church property during the year 1998 amounted to IR£2.7m, with IR£1.7m applied to meet the cost of new building programmes in parishes, and the balance invested as permanent endowments in trust for the parishes concerned or held on deposit pending final decisions at parochial or diocesan level. Note: It is essential that any proposal to sell a property vested in the Representative Body should be notified to the Representative Body at the earliest opportunity. This will ensure that a full investigation of title is carried out in the initial stages of any such proposal and help to avoid subsequent delays or frustration. It may not always be realised that a particular property can be held subject to an underlying trust which may have restrictive implications where a sale is being contemplated.

    Insurance

Select Vestries are reminded of the importance of having adequate insurance cover on all parochial properties and, in particular, appropriate Public Liability cover (including cover on all graveyards whether closed or not). The level and adequacy of cover against standard fire and storm perils, employers and public liability, personal accident etc should be reviewed regularly (at least on an annual basis).

Any select vestry contemplating the building of a new glebe house should contact the Representative Body office at an early stage. Quite apart from the fact that formal approval has to be obtained, general advice is available from the office.

A specimen plan for new glebes is available for information and guidance. The plan illustrates typical accommodation, arranged in a practical way, to meet the reasonable needs of the average incumbent. It is emphasised, however, that the plan is of an advisory, rather than a mandatory nature.

Under the provisions of Chapter X of the Constitution, the Representative Body holds and administers the Church Fabric Fund "upon trust, to apply the income or allocations or grants authorised by the General Synod, at its discretion, in defraying the costs, in whole or in part, of restoration or repair of the fabric of any church or chapel, if same is vested in it, and it is satisfied that it is in use and certified by the diocesan council to be essential for public worship by the Church of Ireland."

Grants in excess of IR£87,000 (€110,467) were made in 1998. Applications for grants, subject to criteria, are considered twice yearly in April and November. Details are available from Church House.

Grants in excess of IR£75,000 (€95,230) were made from the Marshall Beresford Fund, which is also available for repairs to churches.

Staff relocated to temporary office accommodation at the Royal Hospital, Dublin in late August 1998. This was a major operation and the opportunity was taken both to transfer a significant volume of non-current Church House records and files to the RCB Library archives and to destroy certain other redundant material accumulated over the years since Disestablishment. The Church of Ireland College of Education kindly made rooms available for meetings of the many Committees which normally meet in Church House, for which the RCB is most grateful.

The refurbishment programme has been substantial, involving stripping back the building to bare walls and floors to install new windows, heating system, lighting and cabling and to generally upgrade the building to meet health and safety and fire safety standards. Additionally, the reception area has been extended, as has been the canteen area, which had not proved to be large enough when meetings of the Representative Body and/or Standing Committee are taking place. Estimated overall final costs will be in the region of IR£1.2m, reflecting escalating property costs in the current economic climate on the one hand and, on the other, an investment in real property assets as distinct from financial assets.

    Trusts

New trusts and additions to existing trusts to a total value of IR£485,765 (€616,794) were received in 1998. In the vast majority of cases these new moneys represent perpetual trusts, in which case the capital is invested and the annual income arising therefrom, less a deduction or contribution towards administration and management, credited to the trust and distributed accordingly. The total market value of all trust funds (excluding the Clergy Pensions Funds) appreciated to IR£134,416,301 (€170,673,496) as at 31 December 1998.

LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES COMMITTEE Membership

The Revd Professor JR Bartlett was appointed as an advisory member of the Committee in his capacity as Principal of the Theological College.

    Library Staff

The Library staff was augmented by the appointment of Dr Susan Hood as Assistant Librarian and Archivist with effect from January 1998.

    Library Development

The programme of development in the Library was completed. At a ceremony on 6 March 1998 the work was blessed and dedicated by the Bishop of Meath and Kildare and the refurbished Library was officially opened by Dr David Ford, Regius Professor of Divinity in the University of Cambridge.

  • Readership

The number of reader visits increased in 1998 although the number of loans of printed books fell, reflecting, in part, the attractiveness of the new reading rooms as places to study. The demand for archive services continued its upward trend with, once again, more archives and manuscripts being produced for researchers than in any previous year.

Induction sessions were given by the Library staff for new ordinands in the Theological College, for new candidates for the auxiliary ministry, for first year students of the pastoral studies diploma in the Theological College's extra mural programme, and for the new intake into the Archbishop of Dublin's Course in Theology. Most of this work was undertaken in the evenings.

In addition to the normal opening hours the Library was open until 7.30 p.m. on the Friday evenings when the candidates for the auxiliary ministry were resident in the Theological College.

    Allocations

The General Synod allocated IR£3,000 and £2,500 for the purchase of books and IR£600 for binding. This was generously augmented from the following sources:

Armagh diocese (£300); Board of Education (IR£250); Cashel, Ossory, Waterford, Leighlin & Lismore dioceses (IR£100); Clogher diocese (£100); Connor Ordination Committee (£400); Cork, Cloyne & Ross dioceses (IR£275); Derry & Raphoe dioceses (£300); Dublin & Glendalough dioceses (IR£250); Ferns diocese (IR£50); Kilmore diocese (£100); Limerick, Killaloe & Ardfert dioceses (IR£200); Meath & Kildare dioceses (IR£300).

    Surveys

The records in Church of Ireland House, Dublin, were surveyed, with the assistance of Church House staff, and agreement was reached as to which records should be transferred to the Library and under which conditions these records might be made available to researchers. The parish records of Boyle, Roscommon and Longford were surveyed in situ by Dr Hood, while those of the Ematris group of parishes were examined in the rectory when surveying the library of the late incumbent, Canon J Merry.

    Accessions

The collections of printed books were significantly augmented during 1998 by purchase and gift, including important donations from the libraries of the late Ven RGF Jenkins, the late Canon J Merry, and the former Rector of Arva, Canon Jack Watson.

The principal archival accessions were the non-current records of the General Synod, Representative Church Body, and their committees, which had been in the custody of the administration since disestablishment. Some 420 volumes, together with 60 boxes of deeds and papers, and a quantity of maps and architectural drawings, were transferred from Church House to the Library. In addition records from 60 parishes were received together with a variety of manuscripts collections of which the most important were the records of the Swords Borough School, the Mageough Home, and the YWCA.

    Oral Archive

Interviews with Canon John Barry, the late Mrs Mercy Simms, the Ven AHV Frazer and Canon HG Watts were completed and the tapes were lodged in the Library.

Work continued on the creation of a definitive database of church plate. At the beginning of 1998 approximately one third of the inventories had been returned and checked. A slow down in the return of inventories by the middle of the year was followed by the issue of a reminder, over the name of the Chief Officer, which produced a limited response. However, by the end of 1998, only a little over half of the inventories had been returned. In any circumstances this would be a disappointing response but in the apparent context of an increasing number of thefts from churches, it is shockingly negligent.

The Committee agreed to the request from the Executive Committee to draw up a policy for the display/disposal of church plate.

    Church of Ireland Libraries Group

The Committee met representatives of the diocesan and cathedral libraries in April in the RCB Library. Mr Harry Carson (Public Library, Armagh) and Canon Muriel McCarthy (Marsh's Library, Dublin) spoke about their experiences of computerising library catalogues.

    Outreach

Mrs Heather Smith continued to administer the Adult Education Video Library and to edit the monthly video review section in the Church Review.

The fourth volume in the Library's parish register series, Register of the parish of Holy Trinity (Christ Church), Cork, 1643-1669, edited by Dr Susan Hood, was published in December 1998. Earlier in the year an edition of the Registers of Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, edited by Dr Raymond Refaussé and Dr Colm Lennon, and based largely on the Christ Church archives in the Library, was published by Four Courts Press. Articles and reviews by Dr Refaussé and Dr Hood were printed in The Irish Genealogist, Irish Archives and the Church of Ireland Gazette.

Dr Refaussé gave lectures on Church of Ireland archives and the resources of the Library to the MA in Local History students in NUI-Maynooth, to the Higher Diploma In Archives students in UCD, and, with Dr K Milne, to the second year ordinands in the Theological College. Dr Hood spoke to the Garda Historical Society, contributed to a genealogical lecture series organised by Dublin Public Libraries, and together with Mrs Mary Furlong, mounted an exhibition of parish records in Taney parish centre.

Dr Hood liaised with Dublin Public Libraries in selecting items from the Library's collections for an exhibition entitled "Rescuing the Records" which was part of the celebrations to mark the centenary of the death of Sir John T Gilbert. The exhibition was mounted in the Dublin Civic Museum in the summer and subsequently toured the public libraries in the city. Small exhibitions to mark the 1798 Rebellion and the visit to Dublin of the Porvoo Delegation were mounted in the hall of the Library.

A page on genealogy for the Church of Ireland website was produced and the site regularly used to promote the Library.

 MISCELLANEOUS AND GENERAL Deposit Interest (Rates)

The rates of interest allowed or charged by the Representative Body are linked to the rates ruling from time to time in the Money Market. The following rates of interest were applied by the Representative Body in respect of the year 1998:

 IR£

 £

Dr Cr Dr Cr
QUARTER ENDED % % % %
31 March 6.75 5.75 7.25 6.75
30 June 6.75 6.00 7.25 6.75
30 September 6.75 6.00 7.50 7.00
31 December 5.50 4.75 6.75 6.50

These rates only apply to revenue balances to credit of diocesan and other accounts and not to permanent capital other than in cases where, for some reason, there may be a delay in making a long term investment (e.g. proceeds of sales of glebes). Interest is calculated on daily balances and time weighted.

The total value of the subscriptions collected under deed of covenant on behalf of parishes in 1998 was £4,035,659 to which the income tax recovered by the Representative Body added £1,206,208 to give a total of £5,241,867 as compared with £5,166,951 in the previous year.

Single cash gifts of £250 or more will qualify for tax relief using the Gift Aid Scheme and a total of 366 gifts was processed by the Representative Body for parishes in 1998. Gross value of these gifts amounted to £306,480 and the tax recovered amounted to £70,491 as compared to £64,338 in 1997.

Parishes have again been reminded of the strict legal and technical requirements of the Inland Revenue in relation to both formal documents and to maintaining adequate underlying records of payment (the "audit trail"). A second series of seminars with the Inland Revenue will take place in April 1999 over a two week period in 8 separate locations across Northern Ireland.

The new Euro currency came into existence as a legal currency on 1 January 1999. Conversion rates between it and the eleven participating currencies are now irrevocably fixed. The exchange rate between the Euro and the Irish pound is 1 Euro = IR£0.787564 or IR£1 = Euro 1.269738.

The exchange rate between the Euro and the UK pound Stg will fluctuate according to market conditions.

The RCB intends to continue to operate its mainstream Irish pound accounting and payroll transactions in Irish currency and will not convert to Euro financial accounting and reporting earlier than 1 January 2001 or later than 31 December 2001.

Subsidiary accounting systems for investment transactions will, where appropriate, be conducted in Euros with effect from 1 January 1999. This will not be apparent to parishes and dioceses, however, since all such transactions will be converted automatically to Irish pounds (including dividend distributions) during the interim or transitional period prior to the changeover date in 2001.

Dividends on UK shares expressed in Sterling will continue to be transacted and distributed in Sterling. Similarly, accounting records and transactions for all parishes and dioceses in Northern Ireland will continue to be maintained and conducted in Sterling.

Payment of stipends and pensions currently expressed in Irish pounds, together with related deductions for car loans, income tax and national insurance etc, will continue to be conducted in Irish currency where applicable until either 1 January 2001 or 31 December 2001 as the case may be.

During the year the RCB (a) agreed certain extensions to the public liability indemnities contained in the standard parish combined policy of the Ecclesiastical Insurance Office (EIO) and (b) negotiated terms with DAS Legal Expenses Insurance Company Limited to provide legal defence insurance for insured persons who may be involved in a criminal investigation or trial related to or connected with parish activities. This additional cover has been provided on a corporate basis for all those parishes insured with the EIO and costs charged out to the dioceses who, in turn, collect the parish share of the premium from each Select Vestry within their jurisdictions.

Parishes not insured with the EIO were advised to put in place similar indemnities and to confirm arrangements with their diocesan offices.

  • Inflation Statistics (5 year review)
Year
(November)
UK
(RP Index)
Republic of Ireland
(CP Index)
1994 2.6% 2.4%
1995 3.1% 2.4%
1996 2.7% 1.9%
1997 3.7% 1.6%
1998 3.0% 2.1%

A full list of donations and bequests to the Representative Body for parishes, dioceses and special trusts is given at the end of this report.

    Capital Taxes

Reference has been made in previous reports to the various taxes, whether on capital or income, which may affect residents in the Republic of Ireland or the United Kingdom. Because of these taxes a person wishing to contribute to the Church may find it advantageous to do so by means of a capital donation.

    Form of Bequest

Attention is drawn to the provision contained in the Form of Bequest printed in the final pages of this report, whereby the Representative Body, as Trustee, requests permission to invest in any investments or securities whatsoever in its sole discretion. Circumstances may alter from time to time and it is desirable that there should be freedom to act in the best interests of the parochial or other fund concerned.

    Trusts for Graves

The Representative Body does not accept any trust for the provision, maintenance or improvement of a tomb, vault, grave, tombstone or other memorial to a deceased person unless a specific benefit will accrue to the parish concerned.

 RESOLUTIONS RECOMMENDED TO THE GENERAL SYNOD

The Representative Body recommends that the following resolutions be adopted by the General Synod:

 I. Allocations

That the General Synod hereby authorises the Representative Body to make the following allocations from the balance on the General Funds Revenue Account for the year ended 31 December 1998:

IR£
Group A – Maintenance of the Stipendiary Ministry 758,611
Group B – Retired Clergy and Surviving Spouses 714,888
Group C – Training of Ordinands 513,884
Group D – General Synod Activities 557,352
Group E – Miscellaneous Financing 69,614
___________
2,614,349
___________

 II. Minimum Approved Stipend

That, in accordance with Section 51 (1) of Chapter IV of the Constitution and with effect from 1 January 2000

  1. no stipend shall be less than £17,034 per annum in Northern Ireland or IR£17,423 per annum in the Republic of Ireland in the case of an Incumbent or a clergyman appointed as Bishop’s Curate under the provisions of Section 42 of Chapter IV or of a Diocesan Curate over the age of 30 years appointed under the provisions of Section 43 of Chapter IV.
  2. the stipend for a Curate-Assistant shall be in accordance with the following scale:
Year of Service Annual Stipend
First Year 75.0% of minimum stipend for incumbent
Second Year 77.5%
Third Year 80.0%
Fourth Year 82.5%
Fifth and succeeding Years 85.0%

 III. Church of Ireland Clergy Pensions Fund

That the Representative Body be authorised to transfer the sum of IR£122,760 from its income surplus at 31 December 1998 to the Church of Ireland Clergy Pensions Fund for the purpose of financing a shortfall in the funding of pensions of retired bishops and widows of bishops.


Return to General Synod 1999 Index


THE REPRESENTATIVE CHURCH BODY
Church of Ireland House
Church Road
Rathmines
Dublin 6

Tel: +353 (0)1 497 8422
Fax: +353 (0)1 497 8821

 Email: Chief Officer


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