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Letter to the Editor: Response from United Church of Canada

Response to Ron Walter Trading Thoughts column published in Moose Jaw Express and - May 15th, 2024 edition – Vol. 17, Issue 20 

My name is Annette Taylor and I am the Chair of the Property Commission for Living Skies Regional Council of The United Church of Canada. Our Property Commission approves all United Church property transactions in the province of Saskatchewan.  

I recently read the Trading Thoughts article written by Ron Walter and published in your newspaper on May 15, 2024. The article contains inaccurate information about the distribution of assets when United Church property is sold.  Mr. Walter wrote "All of the Big Three established church organizations -- Anglican, Catholic, United -- require the money from sales be sent to headquarters." I cannot speak for the other two denominations that were mentioned, but I can assure that this is not true for The United Church of Canada in Saskatchewan.

In Living Skies Regional Council our policy clearly states that if a congregation is disbanding, then 50% of their remaining assets (including any assets from the sale of property) can be distributed by the congregation to whatever charitable organizations they wish. Another 20% goes to the Regional Council and therefore stays in the province for the support of other United Church ministries. 10% of the assets are sent to the Indigenous Ministry of the United Church and the last 20% goes to the Mission & Service Fund of the United Church.  

If the congregation that is selling property is planning to continue their ministry or amalgamate with another congregation, then the percentage of assets that remains with them changes depending on the selling price of the property. Here are a couple of examples:

· If the property sells for $200,000 or less then the congregation keeps the entire amount.  

· If the property sells for$1,200,000 then the congregation would keep $670,000 or about 56%.

Our property policies are posted on our Living Skies Regional Council website at If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

The Rev. Annette Taylor  
Chair, Property Commission
Living Skies Regional Council
The United Church of Canada

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