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Pension Fund Board Meeting- Notes

INDIANAPOLIS (Nov. 18, 2016) - During its three-day board meeting, the Board of Directors of Pension Fund of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Inc. received reports from staff regarding investment performance through Sept. 30, 2016, reserve levels for each of the financial programs, and discussed market conditions. Approved plan changes will allow spouses of eligible members to participate in the following Pension Fund products: Traditional IRA, Roth IRA and Benefit Accumulation Account. Enrollment for spouses, including the ability to rollover and transfer funds to Pension Fund, will be available in 2017.

Commenting on this new plan change, Todd Adams, Pension Fund President, stated, "The change allowing spouses of eligible members to have IRA and Benefit Accumulation Account will assist our families in achieving their retirement goals. This also allows surviving spouses with inherited Tax-Deferred Retirement Accounts the access to our Traditional IRA and the associated tax-advantaged charitable giving opportunities.' These changes are part of an overall revised growth strategy for the organization.

Results from the first year of Pension Fund's pilot program, Excellence in Ministry (EIM), were presented to the Board of Directors. For 2016, through the help of the $1 million grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc.'s National Initiative to Address Economic Challenges Facing Pastoral Leaders, Pension Fund selected 14 grant recipients. Pension Fund partnered with multiple seminaries and regions to implement the program. The board approved revisions to the program that will now be sent to Lily Endowment for their approval.  If approved, the new program, EIM 2.0, will increase grants, modify the learning opportunities and seek additional partnerships.

The Board of Directors reaffirmed its commitment to be a faith-based and values-driven investor to address social and environmental issues in the world. In partnership with Disciples Church Extension Fund and Christian Church Foundation, a resolution will be drafted for consideration at the 2017 General Assembly.

Three Board members concluded their term of service with the Pension Fund: Laura Reed Gelarden (Chair) of Indianapolis, IN; Darnell Robertson of Warrensville Heights, OH; and Antonio Rodriguez (Vice-Chair) of Pembroke Pines, FL. Randy Clayton of Topeka, KS. and Kelly Nelson of Duncan, OK., were elected as directors. Peggy Brittan of Spring, TX. and Kelly Bauer of Wichita, KS. were re-elected to the board.

The Board of Directors, acting as trustee for the Christian Church Health Care Benefit Trust (CCHCBT), reviewed financial status and future trends for Medicare plans and approved a 7% increase in rates for 2017. The health care environment continues to be challenging, especially related to pharmaceutical costs. Medical inflation and usage patterns indicate the need for a premium increase in 2017.

Pension Fund of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Inc. provides pension and retirement savings accounts for clergy and lay employees of congregations, regions, general ministries and church-related colleges and seminaries of the Stone-Campbell/Restoration Movement. Pension Fund manages over $2.8 billion in net assets on behalf of those serving in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and related international ministries.

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