St Ursula's Charitable Association
In 1995, the Federal tax law was changed. A distinction was created between "religious" bodies and "charitable" bodies. Both of these were exempt from tax, but donors who gave money to a "charitable" body could set their giving against their taxable income, while donors who gave money to a "religious" body could not.
Obviously much of our work at St Ursula's is charitable - we visit people in need without regard to whether they are Anglicans or not! We help AIDS orphans in Zambia, refugees in Cairo, street children in Thailand. Even maintaining our premises serves a partly social purpose.
But for a body to count as "charitable", it has to be exclusively charitable, and with this in mind, the Canton withdrew the Church's charitable status from 1 January 2005. We are a church, not a charity.
In their letter, the Canton suggested setting up a separate association to carry out the purely charitable aspects of our work. This is what we have done. There is now a St Ursula's Charitable Assocation, with its own constitution, administered by the church council and set up with your giving in mind. The Cantonal tax authorities have confirmed that this qualifies the association for charitable status under Articles 38(i) and 83(1)(g) of the Bernese tax law.
We are suggesting that you direct half your St Ursula's pledged giving to the association. The Treasurer will provide you with payment slips, or you may pay the Association's Postfinance account directly - 60-666488-7.
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