Since 1969 the Free Methodist Church has provided a pension plan for pastors, superintendents, conference personnel, and World Ministries Center employees.
This plan was created for the exclusive benefit of church-related workers and their beneficiaries and is designed to help participants gradually build up a secure source of retirement income.
The denomination first administered the Defined Contribution Plan in 1969 and the plan was frozen as of 1980. The existing accounts were maintained and benefits were paid for those who had accrued a benefit. As of 9/30/2019, this plan was closed and all remaining participants have been paid out.
The current pension plan began in 1981 and is called the Defined Benefit Plan. All new eligible participants who serve in the United States are enrolled into this plan.
Administration of both plans is the responsibility of the Benefits Committee, which in turn reports to the FMC-USA Board of Administration, which governs the plans. It is the goal of the Benefits Committee to keep in mind participants’ best interests and to continually improve the current plan’s benefits, as funds allow, for those who have served the denomination during their working years.
The day-to-day management of the plans is handled by the Human Resources office at the World Ministries Center. Mark Dowley, Chief Operating Officer of FMC-USA, along with staff members Willadean Duncan, Director of Human Resources, Debbie Jenkins, Lori Sherwood, Human Resources assistants, are available to help participants with whatever their needs may be.
The Nyhart of Indianapolis, IN, serves as the actuary for both plans. The actuary continually reviews the plans to determine funding assumptions and maintains all existing and future benefits.
The Free Methodist Foundation handles the investments for the pension plans. The Foundation’s board of directors manages and supervises all investments based on the investment objectives set forth for the funds.
Also provided by the denomination, for anyone who is a participant in either pension plan, is the opportunity to receive a comprehensive Financial Profile at no cost to the participant. The Human Resources office is working along with Guidestream Financial., a subsidiary of the Free Methodist Foundation, to help develop personalized profiles. The Financial Profile addresses specific questions or concerns participants may have about their finances. This service is provided for participants, no matter what their stage of life or financial situation, to help guide them in considering financial and retirement planning, insurance needs, education funding, investment allocation, and estate planning.