Diocese of ChichesterDiocese of Chichester

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The Parish Giving Scheme

Changes to the PGS

Some important changes have been implemented - they affect the way PGS remits money to PCC bank accounts. A new version of the 'Better Way' leaflet helps to illustrate this - downloadable by following the link in the orange panel on the right.

News for May/June 2017

Would you like to adopt PGS in your local church?

If you would like to adopt the scheme in your local church, there are five steps:

  1. Have someone read through the detailed Implementation Handbook (12 pages)
  2. Discuss it in PCC - here is a helpful summary of Frequently Asked Questions (2 sides of A4)
  3. Register the church using the Registration Form, which will need some signatures
  4. Once the registration has been processed and we've sent you the donor forms, get a small number of donors using the scheme (e.g. PCC members) so that confidence is built
  5. Roll it out to everybody

Still confused? There's a menu of materials which you can obtain here or, if you would like to speak to somebody, call John Sherlock on 01273 425685.

Remember: signing up to the PGS is no substitute for a well managed Stewardship initiative. We've found that the change of system 'nudges' donors to reflect on their giving, but for best results think about some kind of campaign. Follow this link for ideas.

Leading the world

Chichester diocese currently 'leads the world' for churches signed up to the Parish Giving Scheme with 165 churches active. If you would like to see this information mapped, click on the symbol below.

Our diocese and Winchester are vying for leadership for the number of givers through PGS - our diocese (as of the beginning of May 2017) has 3707 givers. The gifted money - collected by Direct Debit - is going straight to the 'front line' - i.e. local churches having a positive impact on their local communities. With Gift Aid added quickly, local church Treasurers spend fewer precious hours on book-keeping.

In 2014, the PGS 'went national'. With the backing of the Archbishops' Council, the PGS became a Limited Company (number 8824540) and a Registered Charity (number 1156606). Our Diocesan Board of Finance is a member of the company and has appointed a Trustee to the charity.

Changes in 2017

Thank you to all our PGS parishes for taking part in the survey. The PGS office has now introduced a modified method of remitting money to PCC bank accounts, reducing the risk of a late refund of Gift Aid from HMRC.

PGS Rollout

Our very first parishes (in this diocese) started piloting the Parish Giving Scheme (PGS) in June 2012. It was given formal approval for a roll-out across Sussex by The Chichester Diocesan Board of Finance (DBF) in autumn 2012. The annual amounts remitted to parishes have been:

  • 2012 - £28,972
  • 2013 - £547,768
  • 2014 - £1,910,566
  • 2015 - £2,893,844
  • 2016 - £3,401,478

At the beginning of May 2017, £311,461 was remitted to local churches in our diocese through the PGS, including £59,721 of reclaimed Gift Aid. Monthly collections from PGS givers now exceed £250,000.

Cumulatively, over £10 million has been remitted to parishes since we introduced PGS to this diocese in 2012.

PGS resources to help you locally

We have a slim portfolio of essential materials to help you with PGS locally. Everything can be viewed and/or ordered here.

A message about PGS from the Bishop of Chichester

"… the Parish Giving Scheme is a sensitive and effective aid to discipleship and the regulating of spiritual life in material terms. I gladly commend it to you."

Read the whole message

What is PGS?

PGS is a highly efficient system for helping local churches with their planned giving. It collects gifts from donors by Direct Debit, automatically calculates the Gift Aid uplift if appropriate, and then remits the donations to the local church, with the Gift Aid element following as soon as it's received from HMRC (often the same day).

Uniquely, it has the capability automatically to increase the donation by inflation each year, if the giver agrees. Nearly two-thirds of our givers opt for this automatic increase.

To download a sheet of frequently asked questions about PGS (with answers) find the link in the orange panel on the right of this page.

Excellent practice in our diocese

There are some excellent examples from local churches in our diocese of how to communicate the benefits of PGS to donors:

Here is a sample letter to regular givers

Here is a sample letter to non-regular givers

Here is an example of a parish web page about PGS


See Exeter diocese's excellent video about the Parish Giving Scheme by clicking or tapping here.

Money matters

Click here

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Related resources

Speak to somebody

At Church House we have some full-time employees, some part-time employees and some external consultants. Our aim is to provide a good service level to parishes while keeping costs down.

If you have a question about diocesan finance or the legal frameworks under which parishes and the diocese operate, please call our Finance Team on 01273 425798.

If your question is about improving income or reducing costs, call John Sherlock on 01273 425685.

We welcome telephone calls and can usually put you through to the right person or ask them to call you back. Our switchboard number is 01273 421021.