I hope this message finds you and your loved ones well and safe, and that you enjoyed the Labor Day holiday weekend.
Today marks the 19th anniversary of the tragic September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States. Let us take a few moments today to honor the memories of all who lost their lives that day.
We are still 11 days from the official start of Fall. But for many of us, the new season begins immediately after the holiday, as churches, schools, and other settings resume their full schedule of activities. This year, of course, our “normal” way of doing things has given way to new and creative ways of carrying out our lives and work. The Pension Boards has reimagined how to carry out events that had long been on our calendars in this time of changing realities.
You may know about the Annuitant Visitor Program of our United Church Board for Ministerial Assistance – one of the Pension Boards’ Faith and Finance Ministries. Started in 1982 as a pilot program with four UCC Conferences, it now encompasses all 36 Conferences of the United Church of Christ. Although other denominations offer visitation ministries to their retirees, the Annuitant Visitor Program program is unique in scope and outreach, with about 150 retired UCC pastors calling on more than 6,000 UCC annuitants annually. This ministry is a way of expressing thanks to those who have served the United Church of Christ, reminding these faithful retired pastors and lay church workers that they are not forgotten.
Each year, we host a four-day seminar for new and returning Annuitant Visitors that offers worship, orientation, information and resource sharing, and the opportunity for visitors to connect with one another and support and strengthen their vital ministry on behalf of the church.
With travel and in-person meetings on hold for the present, the 2020 Annuitant Visitor Seminar was held as a virtual event over several days. Annuitant Visitors heard updates about Pension Boards plans and programs; met new staff leaders; participated in a Virtual Town Hall Meeting with key Pension Boards staff; and shared their experiences and insights with one another in both small- and large-group discussions. Feedback from Annuitant Visitors has been very positive. Although we hope to be able to host the Annuitant Visitor Seminar in person next September, the success of the virtual seminar gives us another model for how we can continue to carry out our mission and ministry and create a sense of community in these challenging times.
Thank you to those of you who have responded to our quick, two-question survey seeking your input on topics you would like to learn more about in these weekly messages! Here is a word cloud graphic showing topics about which readers want to know more.
In the coming weeks, we will continue to address your suggested topics and provide the information you need to serve more effectively in your ministry settings. If you have not already done so, please click on the survey link below and let us know how we can better serve you.
Stay well, and be safe.
Brian R. Bodager
As the Pension Boards transitions to a paperless environment and adapts to working remotely, we are converting to an online process for UCC churches and employers to update their employees’ salaries and pension contribution amounts. We will no longer send out the annual Salary Report to employers by mail in October. Now, you may sign in to your account on the Employer Portal and once logged in, select Salary Report/Update from the left-hand side of the page to make changes as soon as they occur. This will ensure that changes are made timely, and that your monthly invoices will reflect the updated information as changes occur.
If you need a paper form, you may download and print a Salary Report Form from the Pension Boards website.
Should you have any questions, please reach out to our Member Services team at 1.800.642.6543 for assistance.
The Target Annuitization Date (TAD) Fund 2020 will close in December of this year. In anticipation of the closing of the TAD 2020, you will need to select one of the two options below by November 30, 2020.
If you do nothing, the balance in your TAD 2020 Fund will automatically be moved to the Stable Value Fund.
If you have any questions, or need help, please reach out to our Member Services team.
The online billing portals are back online for the October invoices.
Note: Your account, including any outstanding balances, and employee salary information, must be up-to-date before you use online bill payment for the first time.
Online payment is the New Standard for the Pension Boards. Please transition your monthly payment to our online portals today! If you are not already using the portals, it’s quick and easy to get started and transactions are secure. Click here for detailed instructions to set up your account.
The new UCC Medicare Advantage Plan w/ Rx will replace the current UCC Medicare Supplement Plan with Rx, administered by Humana, on January 1, 2021. As we prepare for the transition to the new Plan, Humana Group Medicare Customer Care is available to help. You may call Humana at 1.866.733.1872, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) with questions you may have about your coverage. When calling, please indicate that you are with the Pension Boards-UCC.
Look for more information from the Pension Boards and Humana by email and mail later this month.
Generations Financial Resources, Inc., is a lending corporation designed to help alleviate the crushing burden of clergy indebtedness in the UCC. Working in coordination with the Minister’s Financial Vitality Initiative it combines personal finance education, needs-based grants to reduce debt levels, and most significantly, low-interest rate refinancing to substantially reduce the rates our clergy are paying on their educational debt.
If you are not yet in the MFVI program, we encourage you to apply and become eligible for Generations Financial Resources. Applications are available on our website. There are two options:
This is a benefit that the Pension Boards offers you RIGHT NOW! Financial wellness is important at all stages of your life and ministry. To help you achieve your financial goals and better manage your overall finances, the Pension Boards offers EY Financial Planning Services at no cost to actively-contributing, inactive, and annuitized Annuity Plan members.
Call the EY Navigate Financial Planner Line at 1.877.927.1047 or visit pbucc.eynavigate.com to learn more and get started.
Our full Member Services staff team is available as before to take your calls and answer any questions you may have. They may be reached at 1.800.642.6543 as well as on the online chat function on our website.