When Parishioners sign up for Gift Aid, the Church, as a charity, receives 25p in tax relief for each £1 donated. This is a marvellous scheme that greatly helps us support Church activities, such as First Holy Communion and Confirmation. It also helps to provide funds for major Church repairs that have been essential in the past, and which surely will again be necessary in the future.
Moreover, with the help of Gift Aid we have, in recent years, been able to increase our donations to external charities from 7.5% to 12.5% of our total offertory receipts. This is in addition to the 2.5% we donate to our twin parish in South Africa. We would very much like to maintain this level and, if possible, to increase it.
Gift Aid is a very simple scheme that is only open to tax payers. Provided you pay tax you can choose to set up a standing order with your bank (we will provide you with the appropriate form), or you can sign up for the offertory envelope scheme, whereby you receive a set of envelopes for each tax year, which you can use for regular and special collections. Any donations made via the bank or envelope scheme are private: the only individual who is aware of the amounts donated is our Gift Aid co-ordinator.
If you join our Gift Aid scheme and you are a standard-rate taxpayer, there is no need to provide any details of your donations to the tax authorities. Higher rate taxpayers might wish to notify HMRC (either by letter or by including details in the annual tax return), as they are entitled to receive personally a further 25p in the pound in the form of a tax rebate. A personal annual offertory statement at the end of the tax year is available on request.
All you need to do to get started is to provide Margaret Lechley, our Gift Aid organiser with your name and address and she will guide you through the rest of the process. Please phone Margaret Lechley on 01992 572516
We are very grateful for the generosity of the many Parishioners who make regular donations at Mass and also on other occasions for specific charities, such as the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD: www.cafod.org.uk)