A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is used in organizations to define the roles and procedures between two (or more) groups in the organization. When it is to be used is as one definition on the web puts it: "When less than a contract is needed but more than a handshake".
It is to be a collaborative effort between groups to identify the common goals, procedures, and policies. It is also to be used to define the differences and how these differences would be handled.
Prior to a recommendation contained in the INC-055C study committee report a MOU document did not exist between the United Thank Offering and Domestic and Foreign Mission Society (DFMS). The United Thank Offering Board has taken the study committee recommendations to heart. Since the acceptance of the study committee at the 2012 General Convention the board has completed three (3) of the five (5) major recommendations. During this time the board began work on a draft of their MOU prior to the July 15th meeting with the Presiding Bishop, DFMS personnel, and the majority of the United Thank Offering board.
The first section that follows is the draft MOU the United Thank Offering task force members forwarded to the Presiding Bishop. During the July 15th meeting call by the Presiding Bishop she ask the attendees to:
- Establish a task force consisting of four (4) DFMS members and four United Thank Offering Board members to put together by-law and MOU documents.
- Schedule following meetings to accomplish the above documents by 9/15/2013.
At the closing of the 7/15 meeting the task force members met and established 8/1 as the date for the first follow on meeting. (See the Accomplishments and Obstacles page for addition history leading up to and following this meeting).
Below is the DFMS MOU followed by the UTO MOU
Memorandum of Understanding
Between The Officers of The Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society
and The United Thank Offering Board
Between The Officers of The Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society
and The United Thank Offering Board
This Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is between the United Thank Offering Board (UTO Board) and the Officers of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society (DFMS).
As an integral ministry of DFMS, DFMS recognizes and supports the UTO Board’s mission, which is as follows: 1) promote an attitude and culture of thankfulness within The Episcopal Church, 2) assist in raising awareness of the United Thank Offering (UTO) 3) assist in raising money to support mission throughout the world, 4) to recommend priorities and criteria for current year grants, 5) to evaluate solicited grant applications based on said criteria, 6) to recommend dispersal of said grants to the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church, through The Episcopal Church Finance and Mission Departments, and 7) establish and nurture relationships with those who are awarded grants.
I. In its oversight role to the mission of the UTO Board, and to facilitate and further the mission of the UTO Board, DFMS shall:
1) include the UTO Board in its mission planning discussions to ensure that the UTO Board is aware of the goals and directions of the DFMS Mission Department. To facilitate this, the Director of Mission will meet quarterly with the UTO Executive Committee.
2) in consultation with the UTO Board, develop a triennial budget for meeting expenses which will be submitted by the Director of Mission to the Executive Council of the DFMS for approval.
3) manage trust funds held in whole or in part for the benefit of the United Thank Offering in a prudent manner consistent with DFMS investment policies and in accordance with their terms.
4) provide all meeting planning and travel arrangements for the UTO Board through the General Convention Office.
5) provide training offered other CCAB’s by the General Convention Office. Other training may also be developed by the UTO Missioner, Finance Department, and Mission Department, and Board regarding various functions and responsibilities. The UTO Missioner will be responsible for coordinating these various trainings as needs arise.
6) through its Finance Department, manage all of the financial needs of the UTO Board; provide all financial processes for grants disbursed through the UTO Board; provide accountability and oversight of all budgets and funds related to the United Thank Offering and provide monthly reports of such activities and a monthly budget report to the UTO Board.
7) provide information to the UTO Board regarding grant accountability and follow up in a timely manner to facilitate the granting process timeline.
8) provide all communication resources for the UTO Board with input from the Board. This includes, but is not limited to, website design, content, and exclusive hosting; social media; multimedia materials; press releases and branding/marketing.
9) provide access to the Extranet for the UTO Board which will allow for the archival record of electronic documents and allow for efficient electronic communication between Board members.
10) manage the archival process for all non-electronic documents, memorabilia or other UTO items.
11) provide translation services through the General Convention Office when meetings are scheduled that require translations or for documents that require translation.
12) provide legal support, when needed.
13) promote the United Thank Offering whenever possible.
14) subject to the human relations policies of DFMS, provide two full time DFMS staff members (a UTO Grants Associate and a UTO Missioner) to support the work of the United Thank Offering and the UTO Board with their work responsibilities to be described herein.
II. The DFMS Staff supporting the UTO shall be:
A. UTO Grants Associate
· Works collaboratively with the UTO Missioner to carry out the administrative functions of the UTO.
· Handle telephone, email and written queries regarding the UTO.
· Provide financial information to diocesan representatives as requested.
· Ship resource materials to UTO Board meetings when necessary.
· Attend database trainings to more effectively and efficiently manage UTO software.
· Maintain the database of UTO contacts with the UTO Missioner.
· Maintain the files for the UTO with the UTO Missioner.
· Attend Global Partnerships Team meetings.
· Work collaboratively with other DFMS departments and staff to achieve the various needs of the UTO.
· Meet with visitors as requested by the UTO Missioner or other management staff in the Mission Department.
· Maintain granting database (Gifts, GrantEdge).
· Identify grants that need to apply for extensions and provide information to the Missioner for processing.
· Provide information and support to dioceses or provinces in the application process.
· Work with the UTO Board to review grant applications for required documentation in order to identify applications which are eligible for grants.
· Disseminate information, coordinate and provide logistical support for the UTO Board regarding overseas grants in collaboration with DFMS Department of Mission, Episcopal Relief & Development and Trinity Church Wall Street.
· Maintain updated contact list for grant applicants.
· Disseminate information on declined and awarded grants.
· Process check requisitions for awarded grants.
· Prepare the files for awarded grants following the archival guidelines.
B. Missioner for UTO
· Provide support to the UTO Board.
· With the assistance of DFMS Legal Counsel, interpret the governing documents (Bylaws, MOU) of the UTO Board for DFMS staff, and the governing documents of DFMS for the UTO Board, to assure mutual understanding.
· Attend all UTO Board meetings, relevant committee meetings, and The Episcopal Church Women Triennial Meeting.
· Oversee and participate in UTO Diocesan Coordinator Trainings, Face to Face, and other appropriate meetings with the UTO Board or appropriate committees.
· Represent the UTO at any hearings, meetings or events to learn where the UTO Board might develop partnerships as or identify innovative mission priorities, including Board Members in these events as appropriate.
· Provide data management, project information, analysis, monitoring and evaluation of the UTO for the UTO Board and DFMS staff.
· Administer necessary operations in the UTO Office, addressing all matters promptly and with consultation as needed with DFMS and UTO Board members.
· With the Grants Associate, maintain and archive all United Thank Offering files, materials and grants.
· Work in concert with the UTO Board and the Diocesan Network Committee Convener to maintain a current directory of UTO volunteers and supporters in The Episcopal Church.
· Work with the Communication Department of DFMS to produce informational, timely and branded materials to promote both the ingathering of funds as well as to showcase the effect of the UTO grants.
· Manage and update the UTO social media, blog, and website to ensure consistent branding and messaging with The Episcopal Church guidelines and to best present the work of the UTO to the church and the public.
· Work to raise awareness of the UTO in new populations. For example: create a UTO “App,” work with the Development Office and Finance Office to develop multiple pathways of giving, develop ways for people to engage with the theology of thankfulness.
· Hold workshops annually at one or more Episcopal Seminaries geared toward recruitment of new clergy to participation in the UTO and to further educate regarding how the UTO can be used as a tool for congregational growth.
· Evaluate all invitations for UTO visits in consultation with DFMS staff to ensure that travel is in accordance with the overall objectives and goals of the Mission Department; prepare a written and visual report for the following Board meeting and website; encourage Board members to participate in travel when appropriate and feasible.
· Provide quarterly analytical reports that reflect pertinent information regarding the financial transactions of the UTO Board and the health and growth of the annual UTO ingathering.
4) Granting Process
· Serve on the UTO Grants Committee with voice but no vote.
· Work closely with the UTO Board to support the Granting Process.
· Understand the granting process in order to answer questions from applicants regarding the process or the interaction with technology.
· Participate with the Grants Committee in the process of developing the Grant Focus and Grant Criteria for each designated granting session (either annual or triennial).
· Develop and implement a timeline for granting and reporting that is transparent and accessible for grant recipients, Bishops, and UTO Board members.
· Facilitate the extension process for grants by gathering necessary materials for the UTO Executive Committee to review and by communicating the results of the extension process back to the grant recipient ensuring follow up for the final report.
· Monitor all phases of granting and ensure adherence to the policies set forth regarding grants.
· Facilitate the final approval of grants by Executive Council.
· Ensure that all applicants are eligible for immediate receipt of grant funds if so awarded.
· Gather grant stories from final grant reports for development by the Communications Department to enhance the marketing of the UTO Ingathering.
· Facilitate the creation of an annual report on UTO Grants and the granting process for approval of grant awards by Executive Council and the Director of Mission.
5) Member of the Global Partnerships Team
· Provide staff support to the Director of Mission.
· Work as a collaborative member of the Global Partnership Team within the Mission Department and under the direction of the team leader.
· Serve as the conduit for information from DFMS regarding areas or topics of interest for grants, grant focus or need in The Anglican Communion to the UTO Board and for information regarding areas where the UTO Board might partner with innovative ministry initiatives happening in The Episcopal Church so that grants reflect the current concerns of DFMS and grant focus.
· Facilitate meetings as requested between Global Partnership Officers and the UTO Board in preparation for granting.
6) Strategic Planning and Development
· In conjunction with the UTO Board, develop innovative and creative solutions for solving decline in the annual UTO Ingathering and ways to raise the profile of the UTO in The Episcopal Church through creative networking and partnering.
· Ensure the further development and recruitment of participation in the UTO Ingathering.
· Network with other mission organizations within The Episcopal Church (i.e. GEMN, SCOM, SCWM) to strengthen ties to the UTO Ingathering and to further enhance the granting process of the UTO Board.
· Solicit feedback and evaluate the current experience of the UTO within parishes.
· Work with the Communications Department to develop a strategic plan for media coverage of the UTO.
III. In recognition of its important mission in the life of The Episcopal Church, the UTO Board agrees to the following:
· as a ministry of The Episcopal Church, the UTO Board is subject to the Constitutions and Canons, the bylaws of the Executive Council, and to support and adhere to the policies and procedures of DFMS.
· include at least one DFMS staff nonvoting member in all UTO Board meetings and communications.
· submit an Annual Report on the Granting Process and the minutes of each UTO Board to Executive Council.
· submit recommendations for grant awards, through the Missioner for UTO, for approval by the Director of Mission and Executive Council.
· solicit input from members of the Global Partnerships Office regarding grant applications from Provinces outside of The Episcopal Church.
· be responsible for the Board Granting Process in support of the mission initiative as established by the leadership of The Episcopal Church.
· solicit confirmation by Executive Council and the Director of Mission of the UTO Board’s proposed grant awards.
· in cooperation with DFMS staff, expand participation in the United Thank Offering to represent all demographics found within The Episcopal Church.
This MOU contains the entire understanding of DFMS and UTO Board with regard to the subject matter contained within and shall not be in effect until confirmed by the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church. DFMS and UTO Board may, by subsequent written agreement, modify or supplement this MOU.
Any such modification or supplementation must be approved by the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church.
For the Officers of DFMS For the UTO Board
Drafted and sent to the Presiding Bishop July 10, 2013
A MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE UNITED THANK OFFERING AND THE DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN MISSIONARY SOCIETY
The United Thank Offering Board 2012-2015
In entering into the 2012-2015 Triennium, the United Thank Offering Board has had as a roadmap for thinking and decision making the report from INC-055 Ad-Hoc Committee of the Executive Council. The report states that the work of the committee was "meant primarily to be a visioning exercise, providing recommendations to the 2012 General Convention concerning United Thank Offering and its vision for the 21st Century." The report continues with recommendations:
"Our recommendations....highlight several common concerns:
visibility, communication, autonomy and support. For the United
Thank Offering to be successful in the coming years each of these
Concerns must be addressed."
Sarita Redd, United Thank Offering Board President, opened the first meeting of the 2012-2015 Board with emphasis on the importance of consciously embracing the recommendations of the study report, and using them in our process of developing goals and objectives for the Triennium. The 2012-2015 Board is on this trajectory.
Significant Points for United Thank Offering Visioning
The United Thank Offering Board has taken to heart several statements from the INC-055 report as being central to the goals of the Executive Council for the United Thank Offering, of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society current leadership and the current United Thank Offering Board.
The first statement is the one quoted above; a second is:
"We believe that the United Thank Offering must continue to be autonomous
but interdependent as regards the corporate entity that constitutes The
A third is:
"As an affiliated organization to The Episcopal Church it is accountable both
to the official governing bodies – the General Convention, the Executive Council and the programmatic offices that grow from the work of the Domestic and Foreign
Missionary Society, and to the UTO community and the Triennial Meeting of The Episcopal Church Women. It is also autonomous in its work as an organization devoted to prayer, mission and giving.
A Fourth is taken from the first and last statements of the study committee report conclusions:
"Therefore we seek to provide the United Thank Offering support, visibility, autonomy and connection...... And we would be willing, should the United Thank Offering Board invite us, to walk along side in support of the United Thank Offering, seeking, as it has been for years, to expand the circle of thankfulness."
The United Thank Offering Board has suddenly found itself in the midst of a set of contentious interactions that has taken all of its members by surprise. The opinion of the entire board is that these specific issues are easily resolved; it is the underlying issue of trust and confidence in the relationship between the two leadership organizations that is not easily resolved. These events have required that the current Board look closely at this central issue of Autonomy and understand for itself what that word means in the 2012-2015 Triennium within all the perpetual poundings of expectations and requirements.
At the core of the discussion are two documents that are intended, according to the INC-055 report, to help define the relationship between UTO and TEC (DFMS). One is a Letter of Agreement related to United Thank Offering Staff. The other is a Memorandum of Understanding: "The United Thank Offering Bylaws requires a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the United Thank Offering Board and the Officers of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society regarding the relationship between the United Thank Offering Board and The Episcopal Church. The occasion of signing that MOU signals the commitment to a relationship of trust and cooperation."
The United Thank Offering Board is clear that a relationship of trust and cooperation is not going to be created by a memorandum. A relationship is built from a series of interactions where both parties feel they have been heard, their needs have been heard and the coming actions will reflect this relational understanding. The key word here is feel.
It is also clear to the United Thank Offering Board that one of the issues that clouds how to build trust and understanding is the DFMS staff position defined as "UTO Coordinator." This position is a historical position created along with the development of the United Thank Offering Committee that emerged from the Episcopal Church Women organization. The governing body of the United Thank Offering has emerged from the INC-055 study as a Board. A Board has specific responsibilities for governing an organization; this new autonomous Board has developed a set of By-Laws and Policies and Procedures in cooperating with The Episcopal Church of which it is an interdependent part.
In understanding the responsibility of being a Board, this body has examined its needs and the needs of its relationship to The Episcopal Church, and seeks to develop the required Memorandum of Understanding by proposing some very specific immediate changes to its By Laws and Policies and Procedures. The Board feels these changes will remove some major areas of stress regarding the relationship. These changes also acknowledge the abilities of a professional volunteer board committed to its tasks, and the need for management processes done by professional staff. It also acknowledges that it has been historically stressful during the last two trienniums to have a staff person serving "two masters."
Our Presiding Bishop stated once that the way you present the Gospel is "You show up. You listen. You tell the truth." These words are action words. The current situation calls for action. The United Thank Offering Board now is showing up. We have listened to the statements and documents presented to us in the last two weeks. We would now like to offer what we can see through prayer—our truths that may help take us to the place where we all desire to be and that is relationship.
The United Thank Offering Board is defined as a Board by the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church and is defined as an autonomous organization that has an interdependent relationship with The Episcopal Church. The United Thank Offering has a very long-standing history (125 years) as an organization that has sustained the varied ministries of the Women of the Church and has contributed both monetarily and theologically to the work of TEC. The United Thank Offering has historically done its work in direct relationship with The Episcopal Church; it has also done its work independently from supervision or management from The Episcopal Church.
The document here is an attempt to create the required Memorandum of Understanding. If the ideas put forth in this document are acceptable to both the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society and the United Thank Offering then the stage is set for building the relationship between the parties, allowing for the development of trust and cooperation. If this concept for the Memorandum of Understanding addresses the concerns of UTO and DFMS, the Letter of Agreement becomes unnecessary. The MOU defines the needs and requirements of both parties, if accepted.
Responsibilities of the United Thank Offering Board
1. Is responsible to the Women of the Episcopal Church for the ingathering and collection of both the funds used for granting each year, and for sustaining the trust fund accounts that support the operations of the United Thank Offering.
2. Is the fiduciary entity responsible for managing and maintaining these sustaining funds of The United Thank Offering, which are fiscally managed by the Executive Council of DFMS.
3. Is responsible, in conjunction with the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church (DFMS), for developing, maintaining and following a set of By Laws and Policies and Procedures that will govern the autonomous functioning of the United Thank Offering Board as a part of The Episcopal Church and in compliance with the governing documents of TEC (DFMS).
4. Is responsible for approving all expenditures of funds belonging to the United Thank Offering
5. Is responsible for the stewardship and management of all United Thank Offering funds.
6. Is responsible for managing all aspects of the granting award process: including developing the focus and direction of the granting process for each Triennium.
7. Is responsible for the election and appointment of all members to the United Thank Offering board; all elections and appointments by the United Thank Offering Board must be ratified by Executive Council.
8. Is the spokesperson for the United Thank Offering.
9. Is responsible for all communications relating to United Thank Offering: news, information, publications must be approved by the United Thank Offering Board before being made public.
10. *Is responsible for supporting the work of mission of DFMS and to fulfill this responsibility will do the following: The United Thank Offering will provide a Triennial financial package that covers both mission staff and mission support:
Financial support for the equivalent of one full time program staff position in The Mission Department
(these funds will be an allocation to come from the operating capital of the United Thank Offering)
UTO Grant funds for 1) overseas missionaries and 2) youth mission opportunities; or other areas identified by the Mission Department
(the above two amounts to proceed from the
Ingathering funds collected annually by the United Thank Offering)
*The maximum total amount to be awarded for the operating allocation for 2012-2015 Triennium is $350,00, or approximately $117,000 per year, prorated and based on use and subject to inclusion of funds already expended; status of funds to be verified by audited financial reporting.
*The grant funds provided by the United Thank Offering Ingathering will be for Missionaries Gifts and Support and support for youth programs (or other foci defined
by The Mission Department) per year, subject to availability.
A. The funds provided to The Mission Department are meant to be a financial package that supports the specific annual needs of the United Thank Offering through staff time and talent and to support the active mission service provided through the Mission Department Staff and its goals. The Mission Department must apply for this funding within each Triennium. A greater amount may be requested in any of the three areas; additional awarded funds will be based on identified needs and funds available.
B. The Triennial Application for Ingathering funds will be due on the United Thank Offering announced schedule for granting. Funding this grant to the Mission Department will be the first priority of The United Thank Offering.
C. The Triennial Allocation Request for operating funds is due to coincide with the budget development schedule of PB&F so that the operating funds portion of the commitment may be included as a known and not estimated figure in the operating budget of DFMS for each Triennium. The
application for these funds must follow the timeline of Church Budget Development for General Convention. This financial support is not designed to create a specific staff for United Thank Offering needs, but to encourage the work of the Mission Department. The Mission Department will make the decisions of allocation of staff time and talent to accomplish the United Thank Offering annual staff support needs.
D. This funding package will replace the salary needs defined in the INC-055 as being necessary for a UTO Coordinator and a grants associate. See the DFMS Commitment to the United Thank Offering for explanation of this idea.
11. Other responsibilities may be identified as needed.
DFMS Commitment to the United Thank Offering
Finance Department Relationship:
1. The Finance department of DFMS will manage the financial needs of the United Thank Offering.
A. Investing and managing the trust funds belonging to:
the United Thank Offering and the women of the church, and the joint United Thank Offering/ Episcopal Church Women Trusts.
B. Collect, track and report the status of Ingathering and Memorial and Gift Trust Fund.
C. Provide day-to-day financial management required by the United Thank Offering.
D. Establish methods to receive and manage online contributions for Ingatherings and for the Memorial and Gift Trust Fund.
E. Provide United Thank Offering Board with monthly reports of account balances in all income accounts.
F. Provide United Thank Offering Board with the following financial reports quarterly:
1. Income Statement
2. Statement of Comprehensive Income
3. Cash Flow Statement
G. Manage Grant funding processes for the United Thank Offering: including release of funds to grant recipients and tracking of required grant reports.
1. Release funds to grant recipients within two weeks of receiving approved grant list from UTO
2. Notify UTO Board of current grant status of all completed grants by January of each year.
H. Provide other services as identified by each party
Mission Department Relationship
2. The mission department of DFMS will:
A. Oversee the work of the finance department in relationship to the United Thank Offering.
1. Assure that the UTO Board receives required reports promptly.
2. Assure that all information for fulfilling granting
responsibilities is available promptly
B. Participate in the grant fulfillment process by:
1. Identifying all grants not in compliance with reporting requirements and notifying Board of these grant issues in January of each year
3. Notifying all grant applicants of a grant being out of criteria or a grant not being funded because of limited funds within two weeks of receiving the information
2. Sending all grant award letters including all required forms, to all grant recipients within two weeks of receiving the financial package from the UTO Board
C. Maintain and archive all reports and documents related to the United Thank Offering granting program.
D. Establish a United Thank Offering team to facilitate the relationship between DFMS and UTO; the responsibilities of this team will be:
1. The team will include staff members of the mission department and United Thank Offering board members appointed by the United Thank Offering grants committee. (The number of members to be determined by the Mission Department.)
2. Developing grants within the defined focus of the United Thank Offering each Triennium.
3. The United Thank Offering Team will review all international grants submitted to the United Thank Offering Board for consideration that meet the approved criteria in each calendar year. The team will recommend to the United Thank Offering Board the grant applications eligible for consideration of funding.
E. Appoint a Mission Department Staff member to serve as Liaison between the Mission Department, identified departments within DFMS and the United Thank Offering Board. The Liaison will:
1. Attend Board meetings (as requested by either party)
2. Facilitate the responsibilities of Mission Department to the UTO Board
3. Report to the UTO Board the emerging interests and foci of Mission Department direction as they
may affect UTO Board granting pursuits
4. Assure that there is a clear channel of
communication between the United Thank Offering Board and the divisions of DFMS that have ongoing responsibilities to the United Thank Offering
F. The Director of Mission will meet quarterly with the UTO Board President and the UTO Executive Committee to assess the developments in the relationship of the Board and the Mission Department
G. Other needs as identified and agreed upon by both parties
Communication Department Relationship
3. The communications department of DFMS will assist the United Thank Offering Board in the communications areas specifically identified in the INC-055 report.
A. Needs of branding and marketing
B. Needs of public relations and publicity
C. Needs of media, news, and special events as requested.
D. Needs of developing social media
E. Other needs as identified by both parties
Other Aspects of the Relationship
From the INC-055 Report
"And we would be willing, should the United Thank Offering Board invite us, to walk along side in support of the United Thank Offering--- "
As The United Thank Offering Board strives to embrace the ideas and opportunities suggested by the Ad-Hoc Committee; there will be many areas where support will be needed. The Board is already making use of consultation opportunities from within DFMS. The Board intends to keep the statement above close at hand as it moves through this current Triennium.