ADMINISTRATION: It really is a ministry!

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Church Administration Class

This class was last offered in October 2016.  We plan to offer it again, but in the mean time, feel free to download the presentations and handouts.  We hope you will find them helpful.

Why this class?

Clergy and lay leaders in our churches are expected to oversee the administration of the church, often with little or no training.  The tasks can seem mysterious and overwhelming.  Most churches do not have the resources to hire administrative professionals.  Those that do sometimes hire staff who struggle to understand Episcopal structures and polity.  This class will give an overview of the basic tasks common to most Episcopal churches and the skills needed to attend to those tasks.  The topics below are a starting point, and registrants are encouraged to bring their own specific questions as well.

Who is this class for?

  • Treasurers and Bookkeepers
  • Parish Administrators
  • Secretaries
  • Wardens
  • Vestry
  • Clergy
  • Anyone who has any kind of administrative role in the church


Session 1:  The ministry of administration

Download the PowerPoint presentation.

Download sample checklists (thanks to St. Stephen’s Troy)

  • Why administration is important as a spiritual discipline
  • What the canons say about church administration
  • Managing Membership Records
  • Managing your licenses – EM, EV, Preacher, Worship Leader, Safeguarding
  • Technology & Communication – Website, Newsletters and Social Media
  • Forms and Reports

emwPresenter: Eric Williams.  A priest for over twenty years, Eric served small, medium and large congregations in three dioceses before being called as Director of the Whitaker Institute for the Diocese of Michigan in 2014.  In that capacity, he oversees adult formation programs in the Diocese.


Session 2:  Everything you always wanted to know about church financial administration, but were afraid to ask.

Download the PowerPoint presentation

Topics to be discussed:

  • Definitions
  • What congregations must do in terms of finance
  • Financial reporting and how to read a financial statement
  • Payroll, taxes and benefits
  • Audits
  • Dates
  • Resources/Contacts

mmiliottoPresenter: Mark Miliotto.  Mark serves as Treasurer and Director of Finance for the Diocese of Michigan, a role which he has held since 2012.  In this role, Mark oversees all aspects of financial management of the diocese and also serves as a consultant to congregations for their financial management needs.  Prior to joining the diocese, Mark served a similar role for Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Chicago and, prior to that, had a 14 year career in the banking industry in Denver, Colorado.  Mark and his wife Beth have two children, age 11 and 14, and they worship at St John’s Royal Oak, where Beth serves as rector.


Session 3:  What every congregation needs to know about grants, insurance and human resource and property management.

Download the booklet “Everyday Essentials for Church Administration”

Topics to be discussed:

  • Buying, selling and leasing church property
  • Accepting donations of property (real and personal)
  • Your congregation and the Standing Committee
  • Memorial Gardens
  • Policies on Alcohol and Firearms
  • Property and liability insurance
  • Human Resources
    • Hiring and Terminating staff
    • Letters of Agreements for lay staff
    • Episcopal Church Resolutions regarding parity in benefits
    • Medical, Life and disability insurance & Pensions
  • Loans and grants for congregations and ministries


Presenter: Canon Jo Ann Hardy.  As a lay professional in the Episcopal Church since 1987, Canon Jo Ann Hardy brings her expertise in the area of human resources, administration, and event and property management to assist the bishop’s office as well as committees and congregations of the diocese.  Jo Ann’s experience and education have led her to studies and credentialing as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) as well as a license in real estate.  A typical workday for Jo Ann in the diocesan office would be spent assisting clergy and lay leaders in matters involving human resources management (hiring and terminations), answering questions regarding   insurance and pension benefits for clergy and lay employees; assisting congregations with buying, selling, renovating or leasing property or applying for a loan or grant; or supporting the work of the Standing Committee and Diocesan Council in property matters. A favorite responsibility continues to be planning and coordination of the annual diocesan convention, which she has done since 2003. Jo Ann and her husband, Jerry, are members of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, Detroit.  When not working, she is busy daydreaming about their next trip to the ocean, or strategizing on new ways to spoil granddaughters, Zola and Eden.


Session 4:  Thinking ahead and beyond

  • Strategic Planning
  • IT, Marketing, Communications
  • Leadership Development & Volunteerism – coaching and mentoring
  • Asset-based congregational development
  • Community Norms – behavioral, relationship norms
  • Creative problem solving

diane_ward_0Presenter:  Diane Ward.  Following a her retirement as CEO of the Red Cross of Southeast Michigan (Blood Division), Diane joined the leadership team at Christ Church Grosse Pointe as the Associate for Finance and Administration.  In her capacity as the Associate, Diane oversees all matters pertaining to the business administration of the Church ensuring sound stewardship and effective management.

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