As you may or may not know, last year the trustees moved the church’s property and liability coverage from Church Mutual to the Great Plains Conference’s group plan. This move was made for the sake of better coverage and savings in excess of $12,000. That money was put to very good use elsewhere for mission and ministry. This year there was a petition to the Great Plains Annual Conference to disband the group. Had the petition passed, it would have pushed us back to Church Mutual or another company. The petition was withdrawn before it was debated thus leaving us with the continued option of better coverage at a lower cost. I’m feeling much better now than I did at the beginning of the annual conference.
The other bit of good insurance news for Abilene First is on the health insurance front. The cost to the church of providing health coverage for the parsonage family (Jenny, Liz, and I) stayed the same from 2014 to 2015. This was because the Affordable Care Act provided guaranteed coverage for pastors and their families without a group plan. If the group had stayed together costs would have gone up several thousand dollars for the church and our family’s deductible would have jumped to $8,000 (Great Plains Conference pastors are a small, unhealthy pool of people). It was a win-win situation for the church and us. But it didn’t work so well for all pastors. There was a petition to reconstitute the group to address the needs of those pastors (and presumably costs would have gone back up). Instead, other fixes have been found, and our health care coverage (and the cost of that coverage to the church) will remain the same.
I’m well aware of the fact that these matters aren’t exciting in and of themselves, but every dollar we don’t spend on insurance is a dollar we can spend on mission and ministry. And I’m excited about that.