Accounting for churches
Church accounting is a specialist area that requires expertise and an understanding of the charity sector. On this page you can access a range of articles, books and online resources providing quick links to practical guidance and background knowledge.
What's on this page?
- PCC Accountability
- Church Accounting Regulations
- Example reports and guidance
- Online articles
- Books and articles from the library
ICAEW support and guidance
Charity Finance Professionals Community
The community focuses on supporting finance professionals working in or advising clients in the charity and voluntary sectors. It offers regular e-newsletters containing the latest news and updates, as well as technical helpsheets, webinars and discounts on ICAEW events.
A new community created specifically to support members who wish to provide pro bono finance services, take up a trustee position or a volunteering role with a UK charity or not-for-profit organisation.
PCC Accountability Guide
PCC Accountability: The Charities Act 2011 and the PCC
Guide to parish, diocesan and charitable finances providing essential advice for the preparation and scrutiny of annual accounts and financial reports. The guidance incorporates SORP 2015 regulations, provides a guide on receipts and payments accounting, and gives example Annual Reports and Accounts for small and large PCCs. The fifth edition was published in 2017. An online version available.
Accounting and Reporting Regulations for English Anglican Cathedrals
Accounting regulations checklist
Guidance note to the Accounting and Reporting Regulations for English Anglican Cathedrals produced by the Cathedral Administration and Finance Association (CAFA) and published in June 2016.
Guidance note to the Accounting and Reporting Regulations for English Anglican Cathedrals produced by CAFA and published in June 2016.
Example reports and guidance
Baptist Union resources and guidelines: Finance
Guidance and templates, including sample Terms of Engagement of Independent Examiner and a template for annual reports.
Church accounts under SORP 2005 (United Reform Church)
A collection of guidance notes, pro formas and example trustees' report for church accounts.
Managing Trustees and Methodist Money
Guidance on preparing end-of-year accounts, independent examinations and audits. A specimen set of church accounts and independent examiners unqualified report is also available to download within the text of the publication.
Mosque and community centre: Example trustees' annual report
Sample accounts produced by the Charity Commission.
Parish Resources: Accounting and reporting
Wide range of resources supporting the management of parochial church councils (PCCs) provided by the Church of England's National Stewardship Department. Information includes guidance on receipts and payments accounts (including example accounts), accruals accounts, producing the trustees annual report, and external scrutiny.
Parish Resources: Parish finance
Guides and information on parish finance including appointing a new treasurer, new treasurers guide, accounting for different types of funds, accounting and reporting, thresholds, independent examination, Gift Aid, funding guides, pensions auto-enrolment, and FACTA.
Parochial Church Council: Example trustees' annual report
Sample accounts produced by the Charity Commission.
Standard forms of accounts (Methodist Church)
Templates available to download in PDF and Excel format, with detailed notes. Sample documents include standard forms of accounts for accruals accounting, standard forms for receipts and payments, annual reports and engagement letters.
Stewardship: Briefing papers
Legal and technical guidance produced by Stewardship, an organisation supporting churches and Christian charities. The guides (some of which are free to download) cover finance and governance issues such as VAT, going concern, Gift Aid, payments overseas, legacy giving, and trustees.
Church collections (HMRC)
Information on church collections within the Gift Aid scheme (Gift Aid, section 3.44) covering collections for the benefit of the church, church collections passed on to a charity, and church collections given to a church fund for a charity.
Association of Church Accountants and Treasurers (ACAT)
Body established in 1992 to provide accounting guidance to churches, including checklists for preparing accounts.
Cathedral Administration and Finance Association (CAFA)
Body created to encourage the sharing of best practice and excellent standards of administration and financial management within English Anglican Cathedrals.
Churches' Legislation Advisory Service (CLAS)
Organisation in the UK representing major church bodies on legal issues. The CLAS issues guidance on church management, including taxation and grants.
Ecclesiastical Law Society
Website includes a selection of reports on ecclesiastical cases taken from the Ecclesiastical Law Journal.
Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme
Interim grant scheme from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. The site provides a four-step guide to eligibility for the scheme.
Articles are available to logged-in ICAEW members, ACA students and other entitled users.
Articles and books in the Library collection
To find out how you can borrow books from the Library please see our guide to book loans. You can obtain copies of articles or extracts of books and reports by post, fax or email through our document supply service.
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