ACNA: Navigating the Financial Realities of Covid-19

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Last week, the Anglican Church in North America Communications Team received an inquiry from a reporter about the use of the United States’ Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)1 by congregations within the province. The inquiry sparked our own interest. As a result, we offered an optional survey to our congregations, the general results of which follow.2

Out of approximately 1,000 congregations, 85 responded to the survey within 5 days. Keep in mind, the Anglican Church in North America has congregations beyond the United States.

Of the 85 who responded, 49 did not apply for a PPP loan (57.6%) while 36 did apply for a loan (42.4%).

Of the 36 who applied, 23 were approved (63.9%), 12 applications are still being processed (33.3%), and 1 was denied (2.8%). Two of the congregations approved for a loan decided to not accept the funds.

The primary reason amongst those congregations that decided not to apply for funding was that they were not in financial need; 25 congregations reported this single reason for not applying. Sixteen other congregations listed this as one of the factors in their decision, but also listed other reasons, primarily various concerns regarding entanglement with and receiving money from the government.

Recommended over and over by those who did apply is to work with a small local bank rather than a national bank, even if you are more regularly a client of a larger bank.

In addition to the congregations, 3 dioceses and 2 ministry partners responded to the survey, all of whom applied for a PPP loan. Four of these applications have been approved and 1 is still being processed.

For more information regarding the Paycheck Protection Program or other COVID-19 crisis resources, visit Anglican Compass and American Anglican Council.

1. The Paycheck Protection Program is a United States government stimulus program offered to small businesses and non-profit organizations to help them survive the shutdown during the COVID-19 crisis. It offers loans to cover primarily payroll expenses, but also rent and utilities. The loan may be forgiven by the government if certain conditions are met.  (Back)

2. The province does not take a stance on whether churches should or should not apply for a PPP loan. These are objective statistics based on the responses of individual entities.  (Back)