It was a joy for me to attend the Western/Central Regional Board of Pensions Consultation (RBC) earlier this month in San Diego. Did you know the Board of Pensions will be celebrating its 300th Anniversary in 2017? We are blessed to have a Board that understands its provision of benefits as holy work, and that bases its programs on a theology firmly rooted in Scripture. We are also blessed to have a Board that is financially secure and solidly responsible in how it deals with the important assets entrusted to its care.
I learned far more than I can share in a few paragraphs, so the first and most important thing I’d like to encourage all pastors and church leaders to do is to spend some time on the Board of Pensions’ website: www.pensions.org. The website is easy to navigate and has lots of practical and helpful information to assist in benefit questions, preparing terms of call, investment opportunities, employee assistance programs, tax tips and more.
In addition to its benefit programs, the Board also offers education resources on topics that range from clergy taxes, planning for retirement, personal finance and investing, and health and wellness. Some of these programs are regional seminars. Others are available as on-line modules. For example, there is a Basic Investment Series: “5 self-paced lessons on the fundamentals of investing, such as risk, asset allocation, and choosing an adviser.” Check out Board University on the website for more information
The primary focus of the RBC was to introduce the revised 2017 Benefits Plan. (pdf) It is exciting to see how this new plan will extend benefits to teaching elders not serving as installed pastors and to other church staff by providing menu options and flexibility for both employers and employees. I encourage you to be active in learning about the 2017 Benefit Plan (pdf) and other programs offered by the Board.
Here are some ways you can learn more:
Read a summary emailed to Teaching Elders, Honorable Retired, and Commissioned Ruling Elders
Be on the lookout for mailings/emails from the Board of Pensions introducing the revised Plan.
You may receive a phone call from Board of Pensions staff to set up a phone meeting to learn about the changes coming for 2017.
Contact our regional representative, the Rev. Mark Frey with any questions/concerns: 1-800-773-7752 ext. 7042
Or contact the Board of Pensions at 1-800-PRESPLA(N) (1800-773-7752)
Our regional representative, Rev. Mark Frey, can be emailed at: firstname.lastname@example.org