The South London Church Fund & Southwark Diocesan Board of Finance
The Diocesan Board of Finance, officially known as the South London Church Fund and Southwark Diocesan Board of Finance, is a charitable company, limited by guarantee.
It is the financial and legal executive of the Diocesan Synod and is responsible for financing its activities. The membership includes lay and clergy from the deaneries to ensure that the views of parishes are represented.
Although it is mostly about finance, it is also about mission and the task can be described as follows:
"To support the parishes and the clergy of the diocese in their mission and to order the use of cash and capital resources towards the fulfilment of that task."
Being a 'Limited Company', the members are technically regarded as Directors; but in agreeing to act as a director the liability of any member is £1, should the company cease to trade!
President: The Bishop of Southwark
Chair: Mr John Kempsell
Vice-Chair: Mr Ian Akhurst
Diocesan Secretary: Ruth Martin
Deputy Diocesan Secretary: Stephen Roberts
Director of Finance: Anthony Demby
Diocesan Surveyor: Eric Greber
Director of Communications & Resources and Bishop's Press Officer: Canon Wendy S Robins
Diocesan Communications Officer: Steve Harris
The Board's Role
The support of the clergy and parishes starts with policy discussion at Board of Finance level and it has reporting to it the following committees:
Executive & Glebe Committee
The Executive & Glebe Committee meets 4 times a year and acts as the Standing Committee of the Board, dealing with all matters of finance. It also looks at the investments of the Board including the 'Glebe' properties. The committee meets at 5pm at Trinity House. The Board of Finance acts as the custodian trustee for all parish property previously held under the Rochester & Southwark Diocesan Church Trust, and the E & G Committee receives the accounts and considers any matters of principle. It looks at all aspects of the Fairer Shares apportionment system, by which parishes are asked to contribute towards the costs of the diocese, the bulk of which relates to parish clergy & housing. The committee meets 4 times a year and The Board of Finance is particularly anxious to recruit more interviewers, especially from minority ethnic areas.
Parsonage & Property Maintenance Committee
The Parsonage & Property Maintenance Committee which looks after the houses occupied by the clergy. It is also responsible for the replacement of unsuitable parsonages. This Committee meets 6 times a year on a Wednesday afternoon at Trinity House.
Communications & Resources Committee
The Communications & Resources Committee which is responsible for how the diocese communicates including the Diocesan paper 'The Bridge'. It also looks at the use of resources and advises parishes on stewardship programmes and fund-raising.
Stipends & Budget Committee
The Stipends & Budget Committee which meets on 2 consecutive full days early in the year, and examines all areas of expenditure with the other Boards and officers. It looks at a preliminary budget in May and considers an appropriate stipend level for the following year.
The Audit Committee which meets four times a year and looks at the internal control and audit arrangements for the Board, including compliance with the relevant accounting standards.
The Investment Committee monitors all diocesan investments and meets regularly with Fund Managers to look at performance. Investments are with Common Investment Funds.
Membership of the Board of Finance
The Board of Finance comprises:
The President (The Bishop of Southwark)
The six Archdeacons
Two clergy elected from each Archdeaconry
One Lay person elected from each Deanery
Five Bishop's Nominees
The Board of Finance meets four times a year, with the Annual General Meeting in May.