How are Proportional Giving Contributions Determined?

How are Proportional Giving Contributions Determined?

Proportional Giving (PG) replaces a Local Church’s giving to Conference and National UCC through Membership Dues and OCWM Basic Support.  Instead, the church’s PG contributions are based on its historic giving level in relation to its Total Income* in a given year.  If church income decreases, wider church giving decreases proportionally, while wider church giving would increase proportionately with increased income. 
How are Proportional Giving contributions determined? 
PG contributions are determined by the church itself using the following two-step process:

  • Step One – Establish the church’s initial Giving Percentage  by using this equation:  Giving ÷ Total Income* = Giving Percentage.  The initial Giving Percentage is based on the church’s giving through Conference Membership Dues and OCWM Basic Support for 2019.  This Giving Percentage will be carried over as a baseline for future years. This step is only needed once.   
  • Step Two – For future years, begin by applying the established Giving Percentage to actual church Total Income* at year’s end to determine the Proportional Giving contribution for the year to come.  Use this equation:  Prior year Total Income* × Giving Percentage = Current Year Contribution.  This step will be taken each year.  As with individual giving in local churches, congregations will be invited to prayerfully consider increasing their Giving Percentages over time. 

What tools will my local church have for following the two-step process?
Local church leaders determining the church’s PG contribution may download the Proportional Giving Workbook below to assist them with the two-step PG calculations.  
What is and isn’t included in Total Income*?
Income included in the PG Total Income calculation:

  • Operating pledge receipts for the year
  • Missions/Outreach pledge receipts for the year
  • Plate offerings
  • Investment income allocation for the year up to what the church’s spending policy permits. This would be the regular ‘draw’ on investment income per the church’s endowment policy.  (For sustainability, SNEUCC recommends a draw of no more than 5% of market value averaged over 5 years using quarterly data.)
  • Net rental income
  • Net income from programs (e.g., a nursery school)
  • Net fundraising income to general operating budget

 Income excluded from the PG Total Income calculation:

  • Capital Campaign contributions
  • One-time donor-restricted gifts for a particular purpose other than general budget support
  • Memorial gifts
  • Bequests
  • Extraordinary use of endowment funds to balance the budget.  (This means any amount used in excess of 5% of the market value of the endowment averaged over 5 years using quarterly data).
  • UCC Special Offerings (e.g., One Great Hour of Sharing)
  • Disaster relief or other one-time mission giving
  • Net income from fundraising for restricted purposes (e.g., new handbells)
  • Income from one-time sale of assets (e.g., parsonage, communion silver)

What support and assistance will my church have for making the transition to Proportional Giving?
As indicated above, all churches can download the Proportional Giving Workbook below to help them calculate their PG contribution.  Also group instructional webinars will be offered during the year; e.g., Super Saturday.

David Cleaver-Bartholomew is also very willing to speak with your church, its leadership, and/or give an individual presentation or webinar. Please contact him directly to schedule a meeting or conversation, or with any questions you may have at, or call 315.753.1375.
How will National UCC’s share of Conference Proportional Giving by local churches be determined?
Just as local churches are being asked, the Conference will likewise calculate its annual giving to National UCC based on an established Giving Percentage applied to Total Income* it has received.  This means that the Conference will now use an approach for giving to the National UCC that parallels the approach that local churches will be asked to use for giving to the Conference. 


Church Dashboard - find out what your church's prior contributions have been

Proportional Giving Workbook

PowerPoint with slides by Hannah Brown, filled with useful clarifying notes, to help your congregation understand proportional giving. For PDF version click here.   Accompanying notes from David Cleaver-Bartholomew here.

Short Instructional Video describing the two step PG calculation process.

Remittance Form for MA churches only

Remittance Form for CT and RI churches only 


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