Even with all the attention being paid to high profile matters in recent days, not to be overlooked is this significant action which will affect congregations on a day-to-day basis: The House of Deputies yesterday concurred with the bishops to make mandatory a denominational health insurance plan (resolution A177) and a lay pension plan (resolution A138).
The health insurance plan (which the Diocese of Massachusetts switched to earlier this year) will be administered by the Church Pension Fund, working through the Episcopal Church Medical Trust. It applies to clergy and lay employees working a minimum of 1,500 hours a year for dioceses, parishes, missions and other designated organizations. It will be implemented gradually over a period starting this fall and into 2012.
The lay pension plan, also administered by Church Pension Fund, applies to persons working a minimum of 1,000 hours a year, and will be implemented in 2011.
The committee work and hearings leading up to these votes have been pretty complex. Bishop Gayle E. Harris, who chaired the Church Pension Fund Legislative Committee, tells us a little bit more about the results here.