Rolla Church of the Nazarene

"Our Church Can Be Your Home"

Benevolence Application

Bear one another's burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ.

—Galatians 6:2

Please read this page carefully before completing the application!

Rolla Church of the Nazarene (RCON) members, regular attendees, and people not associated with RCON may apply for financial assistance through our Benevolence Ministry. Members’ and regular attendees’ requests will be given priority for assistance; however, whenever possible the needs of people not associated with RCON will be carefully considered.

Although it is our sincere desire to provide financial assistance to all who ask, we are unable to consider any requests except those that are short-term in nature. We are not able to provide long-term assistance. Also, we do not help with childcare, long-term or chronic medical, credit card, taxes or legal expenses.

 Upon completion of the Benevolence application, please return it to the RCON church office; mail to 1901 E. 10th St. Rolla MO 65401; e-mail to rollanazarene@yahoo.com. Please feel free to take this form home for completion at your convenience.

Once RCON has received an application it will be reviewed and information verified. Applicants will be asked to meet with the Benevolence Committee and/or will be called by the pastor to discuss the requests. If applicant meets RCON guidelines, an interview will be scheduled with the Benevolence Committee by the pastor. (If applicant is married, the husband and wife are both expected to attend the interview.)

 Interviews are scheduled on Monday nights starting at 6:30 p.m. (There may be times when special meetings are arranged to meet the needs of the applicant.)

When an interview is scheduled with the Benevolence Committee the applicant must:

- Come to the RCON reception area at the scheduled time and wait for a committee member to provide an escort to the interview. (Please call 573-364-1901 before 5 p.m. on scheduled day if unable to attend the interview.)

- Bring to the interview only copies of bills, invoices, eviction notices, paychecks, and other documentation that may assist the Benevolence Committee in accurately understanding your financial situation. (The committee will not accept any original bills or invoices.) If financial assistance is requested, bills must be in the individuals name requesting the assistance. If funds are approved and available, check(s) will be made payable only to the service provider(s) to whom bill(s) are owed; (e.g., mortgage company, utility provider, etc.).

- Follow up all recommendations made by the committee; (e.g., contact a Dave Ramsey Financial Peace, Crown Ministries Budget Counseling , Pastoral Counseling, or other services and/or organizations.)  All information provided on the Benevolence application, to the Administrative Assistant to Pastoral Care Ministries, and/or Benevolence Committee will be kept as private as possible, so please be open and honest in responding to questions. It is likely that during the application process, your information may be reviewed by members of our church staff, Pastors, Leaders and our Benevolence Committee. We are not here to judge anyone, but rather to provide compassionate assistance according to our guidelines and available resources in time of difficulty.  In order for applicants to discuss these issues candidly and without distraction, it is requested that applicants arrange for childcare during the interview with the Benevolence Committee.

The Benevolence process may take up to two weeks. Failure to bring required documents could delay the process. Filling out this application and/or an interview with the Benevolence Committee does not guarantee that monetary assistance will be provided.

Guidelines for Disbursement

The Benevolence Fund is intended as a source of last resort, to be used when the individual or family requesting assistance has explored all other possibilities of assistance from appropriate sources (i.e., family, savings, investments, etc). It is intended to be a means of assistance during the time of a crisis or other hardship.

Disbursements from the Benevolence Fund may not be made in the form of a loan.

Under no circumstance is assistance from the Benevolence Fund to be considered a loan. No gift may be repaid, either in part or in full, in money or in labor.

Generally, assistance from the Benevolence Fund is intended to cover an individual’s or family’s basic needs.

Needs that may not be met by the Benevolence Fund include:

Business investments, business debts or anything that brings financial profit to the individual or family

Paying off credit cards. Exceptions can be made when an individual has had to use a credit card in a crisis or emergency (e.g., hospitalization, death, etc.)

Needs of individuals who are wanted by the law or for paying fines as a result of breaking the law

Housing for unmarried couples

Legal fees arising from criminal behavior

Gambling debts

Penalties relating to late payments or irresponsible actions

School tuition or fees

This list is not intended to be exhaustive; instead, it is intended to provide general guidelines in determining the type of expenses not covered by benevolent assistance.

Special Note to Applicant: Please keep this page of the application for your review and compliance.

Biblical Basis

The policies and guidelines set forth in this Benevolence Fund Policy shall be guided and directed by the following Biblical principles:

1. But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. (1 John 3:17)

2. They (James, Peter and John) only asked us (Paul and Barnabas) to remember the poor – the very thing I (Paul) also was eager to do. (Gal 2:10)

3. And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need. (Acts 2:44-45)

4. Now, brethren, we wish to make known to you the grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia, that in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality. For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability, they gave of their own accord, begging us with much urging for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, (2 Corinthians 8:1-4)

5. Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith. (Galatians 6:9-10)

6. Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. (James 1:27)

Contributions to the Fund

The leadership of RCON exhorts members to minister directly to other members of the congregation as they become aware of specific needs. However, gifts made directly by a member to a needy individual or family are not tax-deductible under IRS regulations.

In order to comply with IRS regulations concerning charitable contributions, all gifts to the Benevolence Fund must be unconditional and without personal benefit to the donor.

Contributions to the Benevolence Fund may not be earmarked or otherwise designated for particular purposes or recipients. The leadership of RCON may choose, at its discretion, to decline certain contributions that are designated or earmarked.

Donors making contributions to the Benevolence Fund subject to these conditions may be able to deduct their contributions if they itemize deductions on the federal income tax return. The leadership of GFC recommends that donors consult their individual tax advisor or CPA concerning the appropriate tax treatment of contributions they make to the Fund.

Source of Funding

The Benevolence Fund shall receive income from two sources:

1. Through the receipt of special contributions by individuals and/or families wishing to make a donation to the Fund (members of the church are not encouraged to contribute to the Benevolence Fund in lieu of regular giving to the General Fund of the church); and

2. Through the allocation or transfer of funds from the General Fund when deemed necessary and appropriate by the Deacons upon approval of the Elders.

Contributions to the Benevolence Fund in the form of a check should be made payable to “Rolla Church of the Nazarene”, with a notation that the funds are to be placed in the RCON Benevolence Fund.

Ways You Can Help

The benevolence ministry is a rewarding activity to be involved in.  At times it can be demanding and quite perplexing, but seeing the ray of hope in weary eyes makes all efforts worthwhile.  When our church families encounter difficult times, it is our pleasure and our commission to assist.

We are in need of:

Money for fuel and utility assistance, food, medicines, etc.

Food items for the food pantry (canned goods, boxed items, meats, and dairy products)

Personal care items such as body soap or gel, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, lotions, first aid items, toilet paper, deodorant, and feminine hygiene products