Church of England dioceses are having to dig deeper to pay annual contributions to the Church of England Funded Pension Scheme, London, after an actuarial study found English clergy were living longer than the rest of the population.
Worshippers are being asked to put at least L12 ($16) a year each into the collection plate to help fund the additional contributions.
And the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, a somewhat bleak and windswept bolt-hole that is popular among stressed Londoners, is hoping to raise L250,000 from the sale of 27 beach huts.
The dioceses that sponsor pensions for their clergy will have to increase their contributions by L12 million a year to fund future pension obligations. Annual contributions for all dioceses now are L35 million, said Roger Radford, secretary to the Church of England Pensions Board.
The review, conducted late last year for the L102 million plan by its actuaries, Lane Clarke & Peacock, found longevity among Church of England clergy is higher than the rest of the population and longevity is increasing faster than expected, said Mr. Radford.
The trustees also will review the plan's asset management arrangements later this year, he said. The plan was set up in 1998 and is entirely invested in U.K. equities. UBS Asset Management Ltd. and Merrill Lynch Investment Managers Ltd., both of London, each manage half the assets.