Converge Cornerstone Fund is open and continuing to serve the needs of partnered ministries and investors. We realize your ministry is facing new challenges as a result of COVID-19. As of recent, a lot of information has been quickly dispensed, leading to many questions. Although we are not experts in all the news coming out, we want to remain a resource as your church is determining its options.
As you have likely seen, the President, along with Congress, recently passed the CARES Acts (and the Paycheck Protection Program, which is part of the Act) as part of a plan to avoid sudden and vast amounts of unemployment. This Act is positioned to assist churches and non-profits in unprecedented ways in weeks and months to come. We wanted to provide a brief overview of the plan, how it impacts Converge churches, and some proactive steps your church can take to benefit from this program.
An Important Overview Of Key Plan Details
- The CARES Act establishes a new US Small Business Loan Program called the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses (including nonprofits and churches) with 500 or fewer employees.
- The program provides federally guaranteed loans to cover payroll and other operating expenses.
- Loan funds can be used to cover the following expenses:
- Payroll Costs
- Group health insurance benefits, paid sick leave, medical and insurance premiums
- Mortgage or rent payments
- Interest on any other debt incurred before February 15, 2020.
- Principal amounts on the loan for the first eight-week period from the time the loan was made may be forgiven if used to pay:
- Compensation under $100,000 (per employee)
- Payment of interest on any obligation
- The amount of loan forgiveness is reduced based on an employer’s decline in workers or wages (declines between February 15, 2020, and April 26, 2020, do not reduce the amount of loan forgiveness but only if the employer returns to pre-decline levels by June 30, 2020).
- Any portion of a loan not forgiven is carried forward as an ongoing loan with a term of ten years at four percent interest.
- The program is retroactive to February 15, 2020, to help bring workers who may have already been laid off back onto payrolls. The loan application needs to be submitted by 30, 2020.
- Our understanding is that no collateral or personal guarantees will be required.
Why The Converge Cornerstone Fund Encourages Churches To Consider Applying NOW
- The CARES Act and Payroll Protection Program offer much-needed relief to Converge churches during these unprecedented times.
- We believe the Church is on the cusp of an evangelical awakening, and these provisions allow Converge pastors and leaders to focus their energy on ministry during these unique times and be best prepared for growth in months to come.
- Based on our understanding these funds should have no negative impact on existing and/or future Converge Cornerstone Fund loans.
- For current Converge Cornerstone Fund borrowers, these provisions help solve short-term hardships without creating long-term implications on existing loans.
What Steps Converge Churches Can Take Today
- Prayerfully consider if this provision is right for your church.
- Contact your local bank to begin conversations.
- The Converge Cornerstone Fund is not a part of the Payroll Protection Program. Your church will need to work with a local bank with delegated authority to issue Small Business Administration (SBA) loans.
- Contact your accountant and/or financial personnel to begin compiling the necessary documentation.
- Reassure your staff and leaders that you are working on a plan.
If you have any specific questions about your Converge Cornerstone Fund, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Associate Director of Church Lending