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We are one in the

of mutuality The ministries that Church of the Brethren Benefit Trust provides to the denomination — a dependable pension plan, a time-tested asset management program, and an array of insurance products — are offered not for profit but as a service to the Church of the Brethren.


hether our members

work in sanctuaries, offices, or nursing stations, one thing is certain — We’re all in this together. The concept of mutuality that is at the heart of the Church of the Brethren is also the guiding principle behind the way

your hand when unexpected events

Brethren Benefit Trust serves its

transform your way of life.

members and clients. We want to celebrate with you when your

We are one community bound by God’s

investment earnings are outpacing

love and grace. Thank you for placing

benchmarks, and we want to hold

your trust in us.

of learning BBT is a financial institution, but it’s faith-based. And it’s Brethren, so we know it has core values like

what we would expect from a

Brethren agency. That’s important to us. Craig Coble, member of Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the Brethren

”Like good stewards of the manifold

“People who are struggling with

grace of God, serve one another

financial issues can get some tools they

with whatever gift each of you has

can apply to their lives through these

received.” 1 Peter 4:10 is clear about

sessions,” said Craig Coble, a member

the responsibility we have to share our

of Elizabethtown (Pa.) Church of the

talents with one another. That is why

Brethren, who has organized several

BBT is committed to offering a variety

sessions with BBT staff at his church.

of workshops that allow experts on BBT’s staff to help members and clients

“Plus, several members of this

transform their financial futures.

church are interested in helping others with financial guidance and stewardship. BBT’s workshops can give them the tools they need to accomplish that goal.”

Workshops BBT offers a number of customizable, free workshops to congregations, retirement communities, and other Brethren-affiliated organizations. Topics include personal and congregational finance, planned giving, retirement planning, long-term care, and more. Visit BBT’s website to request a free workshop.

of opportunity My retirement funds are managed by people who are followers of Christ and

good stewards of the resources of the church. That allows me to focus my worry on parishioners instead. Dan Rudy, pastor of Ninth Street (Roanoke, Va.) Church of the Brethren

“My mentors and fellow pastors said, ‘Daniel, you’d be a fool to not get involved with it.’” Dan’s no fool — he contributes 4 percent of his salary to his Pension Plan account

Even though he’s only 25 years old,

and his church contributes 11 percent

the new pastor at Ninth Street (Roanoke,

of his salary, as recommended by Annual

Va.) Church of the Brethren is making


retirement savings a high priority. Dan Rudy chose to become a member of

“If I start considering retirement as

Brethren Pension Plan after learning

something important now, I won’t feel like

about it through BBT visits to Bethany

I have to scramble at 45 or 50 years old

Seminary, where he earned his Master

when retirement is 10-15 years away and

of Divinity degree in 2011.

I’ve got nothing,” said Dan.

Church Workers’ Assistance Plan Churches and district offices contribute the equivalent of 1 percent of their employees' salaries to the Church Workers’ Assistance Plan, a BBT ministry that assists current and retired church employees who have critical financial needs.

of empowerment Brethren Foundation is part

of the wider church, which keeps everything within the denomination. There’s built-in trust there already. Nate Polzin, interim District Executive, Michigan District

Tactical Funds

Growing funds to grow new church

In December, Brethren Foundation staff

starts — that was one of the goals of the

proposed a path for investing the savings to

Church of the Brethren’s Michigan District.

a Michigan District committee charged with

While the CDs and checking accounts their

managing a pool of district-wide funds.

goal-driven Tactical Funds that are

that they could get better returns using

“I’d heard of BFI, but I thought it was

and churches with diversified

other investment options.

mainly about helping people plan estates

funds were in had been reliable, they knew

In 2012, BFI launched five designed to provide organizations investment options that offer

and charitable giving,” said Nate.

actively managed allocations to

said interim Michigan District Executive Nate

That committee chose BFI as its asset

available to organizational clients

Polzin. “We had to get our heads around

manager because of BFI’s performance

the idea of being open to investing. What

history, socially responsible investing

helped a lot of us get there was knowing

initiatives, competitive fee structure, and

that Brethren are doing this for a living.”

Church of the Brethren identity.

“We were leery because of the stock market,”

serve their specific needs. These are for an additional management fee.

of renewal I have had to make use of many kinds of insurance at points in my life. Insurance can provide peace of mind and time to take care of things. Dawn Ziegler, member of Sebring (Fla.) Church of the Brethren

When Dale Ziegler was killed while riding his

Ancillary Insurance Products

motorcycle to Church of the Brethren Annual

“We had our first child in 1988 and felt it

Conference in 1994, he left behind his wife,

was important to have insurance in case

Dawn, and three children. Amidst the tragedy of

something happened,” said Dawn.

provides dental, vision, short-

Dawn also needed to move her family out of

Her life insurance benefit through Brethren

and accidental death and

their house — Dale was the youth pastor at Union

Benefit Trust provided the down payment on

Center (Nappanee, Ind.) Church of the Brethren,

a new house in Sebring, Fla., near her family,

and the Zieglers were living in the parsonage.

where she raised her children and continues to

losing her husband and the father of her children,

live. Her payout was even doubled because of

Brethren Insurance Services and long-term disability, life, dismemberment insurance

coverage for pastors and other employees of Brethren-affiliated congregations and organizations.

the accidental nature of Dale’s death.

Long-Term Care Insurance is also

Insurance Services as part of Dale’s pastoral

“BBT did a good job,” said Dawn. “They took

employees and members, as


care of things and helped me.”

Fortunately, Dawn and Dale had decided to invest in life insurance through Brethren

offered to all Church of the Brethren well as their families and friends.

of transformation One thing that mattered to us was BFI’s

socially responsible investments. It’s

important to know that our money is going places that are in keeping with the faith position of the church. Nate Polzin, interim District Executive, Michigan District

How can a small, socially conscious

In August 2011, energy company

church denomination use its strength

ConocoPhillips announced that it

and its values to improve the corporate

revised its Human Rights Position to

policies of major multinational

specifically address and honor the

companies? Through its dollars.

rights of indigenous peoples. This announcement came after years of

Investing in a socially responsible

related dialog and meetings among the

manner is a principle that this

company, BBT, Boston Common Asset

ministry has followed for decades.

Management, and other stakeholders.

Clients’ and members’ voices are heard loudly and clearly by the

The SRI ministry shapes more than

companies in which their money is

companies — it shapes lives. The

invested through BBT.

Community Development Investment

FINCA / Calvert Foundation

Fund offers members and clients the opportunity to provide loans in the areas of community development, affordable housing, microcredit, and small business development through Calvert Foundation. Member and client dollars speak volumes in the way they are not invested, too. Companies that work against Brethren values are screened out of BBT's actively managed funds.

Where my money goes says something about what I believe in. ‘Where your treasure

is, there your heart will be also.’ For me, I take very

seriously the importance of having my treasures invested in socially responsible ways. Dan Rudy, pastor at Ninth Street (Roanoke, Va.) Church of the Brethren

About our ministries Pension

benchmarks, including stock, bond,

Brethren Pension Plan is a 403(b)(9) defined

short-term, and alternatives funds; a

contribution plan that serves more than 4,750

community development investment fund;

current and former employees of congregations

and five new goal-driven tactical funds.

and denominational organizations. Every month, approximately 1,650 annuitants receive


a monthly benefit from the Plan.

Brethren Insurance Services provides ancillary plans for pastors and other employees of


Church of the Brethren congregations, districts,

Brethren Foundation manages the assets

and camps. Medical and ancillary plans are

of nearly 200 congregations and other

available to Brethren-affiliated employer

organizations and the deferred gifts of Church

groups. Long-Term Care Insurance is offered

of the Brethren members. BFI offers 21 fund

to all Church of the Brethren employees and

choices that are competitive with industry

members, as well as their families and friends.

Foundation Funds (amount in millions)

Pension Funds (amount in millions)

$138.0 million under management as of Dec. 31, 2011

$286.66 million under management as of Dec. 31, 2011

Charitable Stock $2.84m Charitable Bond $3.89m

Irrevocable $0.10m Pooled $0.10m Domestic Equity

Equities and Fixed Income $72.58m

Equities and Fixed Income $30.70m

Domestic Equity $70.06m




CDIF $0.47m Real Assets $0.51m

Fixed Income $15.23m

International $10.59m CDIF $0.30m Real Assets $0.01m Gift Annuities $2.94m Short-Term $5.80m

Short-Term $17.98m

Fixed Income $41.42m

RBF $109.23m

We are one in the

1505 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120 800-746-1505 •

Brethren Benefit Trust Annual Report  

A look back at 2011-2012 in the life of BBT's members and clients.

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