After the academic year 2022-2023, the Diocese of Johannes intends to close its movement activities. This happens at a time when parish income is dwindling and parishioners have to largely bear the costs of their property.
The Parish Council of Johannes Parish decided on January 17, 2022 that “the parish should intervene to end the activity of the youth after the 2022-2023 school year.” In the Board meeting minutes issued on March 21, the following sentence was added: “It remains not possible to make a final decision on any of the options presented here until the personnel involved have been consulted directly.”
The parish provides early childhood education in Drmsø and Kronohagen. However, since the fall, the parish has scaled back its operations, and the supply drops from 100 to 80 places.
The decision comes after the church community in Helsinki changed its internal rental structure. The reorganization affects dioceses with significant characteristics. For example, the Diocese of Johannes, located in the largest church in the city, which is also being renovated at the moment.
Early childhood education has always been a financial loss for the parish. Vice President of the El Khorna Council Martina Harms Aalto He says devotees may have revised the activities, even without the tighter financial situation.
– This means that we have to proceed with great care and yes, the operating credits are reduced. It is not easy to slaughter Eftes to be able to keep a house, we want to develop the activities of our children and youth.
What is clear according to Harms-Aalto is that cash is not as strong as it used to be. The reason is that parishes must be largely responsible for the property costs and income lower than the church tax.
– This is a direct result of our membership decline. It is something of a paradox when non-members are disappointed when we have to cut back on business.
– It’s not a major argument. Having to tone down Christian values because the city of Helsinki does not approve of them is a problem.
The funds for the facade of St. John’s Basilica will not be paid in one go, but the seven million euro bill will put pressure on the activities of the parish for a long time.
The parish priest said: It is a matter of 130 thousand euros a year Johann Westerlund To Kyrkpressen earlier this year.
Finances are common to all parishes in Helsinki and all real estate is owned by the community. What has changed is the calculation of internal rents. This means a completely different way of calculating what we pay for our properties. Harms-Aalto says a much larger portion of what we get as a lump sum from the community is now used to pay rent.
In addition to the facade renovation, Johannes parish has another property that has undergone renovation, St. Jacob on Drumsö. The property is shared with Lauttasaaren seurakunta, who pays nearly 80 per cent of the total bill of €17 million.
The church community allocates congregants a lump sum annually, and it is up to the congregants to use the money in the best way. Thus there are no technical budgetary barriers to break into activities such as early childhood education to be able to afford property management.
John’s Diocese has separate institution assets. There are clear regulations for how this money is to be used. So it is not possible to find funds for property in funds. But in the long run, the assets secure the diocese’s diocese activities, says Harms Aalto.
The problem of running out of cash is not unique to John’s congregation. The central administration of the church also spared, and at the end of 2021 the church council announced that it would start negotiations for cooperation. The goal is to balance the economy by 2023.
The church is funded primarily through a church tax. A tax, between one and two percent, paid by church members. On average, a parishioner pays about 240 euros in church tax annually. In addition, the church receives about 100 million euros from the state for certain types of tasks.
82 percent of the tax money went to church activities in 2017. In the same year, 10 percent was allocated to property maintenance and the like, five percent to the common work of the Church’s central fund and three percent to financial expenditures.
Tax revenue drops because the church has fewer members, and fewer are baptized at the same time as the number of those ending their membership increases.
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