The Candidacy Office at the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry (GBHEM) has partnered with Wespath and EY (formerly Ernst & Young) to offer financial planning services to certified candidates for licensed and ordained ministry. The services will be offered at no cost to candidates upon certification by their district committees on ordained ministry.
EY has provided financial planning services to retirement plan participants in Wespath-administered plans since 2005. The financial curriculum through EY includes assistance with cash flow; personal savings and debt management; retirement savings strategies; investment allocation decisions; understanding tax issues; and estate and insurance planning. The curriculum is valued at $2,500 to $3,000 per participant.
The EY Financial Planning Services will help candidates evaluate their financial situations and create strategies for improvement. The EY financial planners received special training in the areas of concern for future clergy, including Wespath-administered plans and programs.
“Our work in the Candidacy Office is focused on connecting the future clergy leaders of our church to the necessary tools to complete licensing or ordination, sharing best practices for navigating the process and providing helpful resources to assist in the licensing or ordination process,” said Meg Lassiat, executive director of the Candidacy Office at GBHEM. “As candidates meet their education requirements, debt can become an obstacle. The EY Financial Planning services will provide a resource for debt avoidance and overall better financial management. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to provide such a valuable resource.”
Candidates certified and marked certified in UMCARES after Jan. 1, 2017 will receive a letter of invitation to sign up for these services in July 2017. Active candidates certified before 2017 (who are not yet local pastors, provisional members, or ordained) may receive an invitation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide a physical mailing address in your email, as invitations must be mailed due to legal reasons. Please note that candidates must be marked as certified in UMCARES before they may receive an invitation to sign up for these financial services.
Those who are already clergy may enroll in EY financial planning sercies by visiting www.wespath.org.
GBHEM offers additional financial support through low-interest loans and scholarships. Awarding more than $5 million a year, the agency provides several ministry-focused scholarships. To learn more about the financial support opportunities offered through GBHEM, visit www.gbhem.org/loans-scholarships. To learn more about the Candidacy Office, visit www.gbhem.org/clergy/explore-your-call-to-ministry/candidacy.
About GBHEM: As the leadership development agency of The United Methodist Church, the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry’s mission is to lead and connect the educational and ministerial life of the church. Every elder, deacon and licensed local pastor benefits from our training and candidacy programs. Many young adults find help in clarifying their vocation and God’s call on their lives through our leadership and discernment programs. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook: @GBHEM.