By George Mahlaela
A Task Team has been set up to review all Rules and aspects of Governance in the Diocese and to make recommendations for the strengthening and improvement of the Rules and Governance Structures of the Diocese. The latter is to be aligned with international and local best practice, legislation and the needs of the Diocese. This is a long term project and the Convenor of the Task Team will report regularly at DSC meetings.
The following were appointed as members of the Governance and Rules Task Team: Mr Peter Greenwood as Convenor, Revd Julian Kok, Ms Faith Mhlanga, Mr Neil Modingwana – Deputy Registrar, Ms Thebi Moja – Bursar and Advocate Richard Rafedile – Deputy Chancellor.
Finances and Stewardship
By George Mahlaela
A year to date budget deficit of R 736 560.00 with Parish contribution arrears of
R 172 610.00 was discussed with great concern. This matter will receive the attention of the Archdeacons for further engagement with the Parish Executive Committees. Bishop Allan was most encouraging in his exhortation when he said “money follows mission” and that this can only happen when “we are all doing what we are called to do.” He assured the meeting that good things will happen for the Church if all clergy and lay leaders sharpen their skills in leading and teaching.
The current season of Stewardship has to be used for the most effective results in the spiritual growth of the members. This will to a large extent contribute to an improved financial situation of Parishes and the Diocese. Bishop expressed his gratitude for Ntate Phuphuu Matseke, the Coordinator of the Diocesan Stewardship Campaign and his team, the Magaliesberg Archdeacon Fr Herman Ndlovu and their Archdeaconry Coordinator Fr Raynard Schovell for the sterling work in putting together a user-friendly 2016 Stewardship Campaign programme.
Communication Strategy: Relaunch of the Diocesan Website and The Kingdom
The Diocese which is a Provincial structure of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA) is a key link between the office of the Bishop, Clergy, Laity, Guilds, Organisations, Institutions, Parishes and the larger church community, wishes to create a communications platform which will be effective, seamless and enable it to reach all its members and communities. Reviving the Diocesan website and revisiting The Kingdom are steps meant to achieve this goal and eventually make communication happen consistently.
Our Communication Strategy therefore seeks to enable the Diocese to be an engaged, caring and responsive partner with all its members and communities; keeping all its members and communities informed; creating an environment conducive for mutual respect in knowledge sharing and extend its work of ensuring the spiritual wellbeing of its members and communities.
We support the Vision, Mission Statements and Synod Theme of the Diocese in our work. We value commitment, transparency, reliability, cost effectiveness and simplicity. Please support us to ensure regular, quarterly, two-way communication flow between the Diocese and its Parishes, Guilds, Organisations and Institutions. It must be about the all-round active life of the Church with photos with graphic photos that say it all.
The Communication Strategy Planning has been led by the Bishop’s Warden, George Mahlaela in consultation with a Task Team of stakeholders in the Diocese. It is wished that its implementation will easily be embraced by all for successful communication throughout the Diocese. Bishop Allan and the Diocesan Standing Committee (DSC) have appealed to the Archdeacons to identify “Reporters” in each Archdeaconry to be the links and resources for the two-way supply of information for the website and newsletter.
The Task Team members assisted George Mahlaela in preparing the draft communications strategy and will be implementing it with him while the Bishop will approve all communication once DSC has supported it. DSC will be kept informed at regular intervals. A regularly updated Diocesan website and online newsletter, The Kingdom, will be the main sources of communication for effectiveness and keeping costs down. It will be the quarterly responsibility of each Parish Executive Committee to access the newsletter, download it and make copies for parishioners.
The Communication Task Team includes George Mahlaela as Convenor, Ntando Makhubu as Media Officer, Fabian Kannemeyer for technical assistance and advice, Canon Vernon Foster, Elelwane Phahlana and Donald Chiloane. Groovin Nchabeleng, a marketing and media guru from St Timothy, The Reeds, plays a crucial behind-the-scenes role as our professional consultant. We are deeply indebted to all of them for this selfless service to the Church in the Diocese.
New Rule On Easter and Pentecost Offerings
Rule 11.6 of the Rules of the Diocese of Pretoria has been amended to ensure transparency and due governance in providing for congregations to express in tangible ways their appreciation of their Clergy.
The effect of the new Rule is that a duly licensed Rector or Priest-in-charge shall be entitled to receive an annual Easter offering. This also applies to non-stipendiary Clergy who are licensed as Rectors or Priests-in-charge of a parochial charge or chapelry. A licensed Assistant stipendiary or non-stipendiary Clergyperson shall be entitled to receive an annual Pentecost Offering.
Envelopes bearing the words “Easter Offering” may only be handed out four weeks before Easter. Collection of the said envelopes must cease four weeks after Easter. All monies collected from these envelopes and the Easter Day collections, must be banked through the normal banking procedure and the deposit must be recorded as Easter Offering. No “Lent” offering or envelopes are part of the Easter Offering to the Clergyperson concerned. The collections of Maundy Thursday Good Friday and Holy Saturday are part of the normal collections and are deposited as such.
Envelopes bearing the words “Pentecost Offering” may only be handed out two weeks before Pentecost. Collection of the said envelopes must cease two weeks after Pentecost. All monies collected from these envelopes and the Pentecost Day collections, must be banked through the normal banking procedure and the deposit must be recorded as Pentecost Offering.
The Church/Chapelrywardens must ensure that the full amount of the Easter Day or Pentecost Day offerings and collections is transferred to the Diocesan Office so that it can be paid to the Clergyperson/s concerned.
Should a Parish/Chapelry wish to supplement the Easter Offering or Pentecost offering, they may do so with permission from the Bishop. The Bishop will consider their request based on the financial health of the Parish.
Resuscitation of the Cathedral Administration Board
The Cathedral Administration Board (CATHAD) is a long standing structure that has been put in place for the main purpose of, inter alia, dealing with the upkeep of the Cathedral and its precinct, the finances necessary for such upkeep and promoting the Cathedral as the Mother Church of the Diocese and as the heart of the Anglican communion to the city of Tshwane.
Since the previous tensions between the Cathedral and the Diocesan leadership, there have been strained relations which unfortunately affected the work of CATHAD. Relations broke down completely when later the Diocesan Office moved out of the Cathedral precinct to 802 Pretorius Street. This affected the Cathedral finances adversely.
Warming attitudes and normalisation of relations have made it possible for the Cathedral to approach DSC to seek to resuscitate CATHAD and this request has been well received. A principle decision was taken to set up a sub-committee made up of the Cathedral and DSC members to deal with the matter in more detail and report back to their principals to move forward. DSC will be represented by Ms K Maila, Mr Donald Chiloane and Mr Peter Tshoane.