Episcopal Diocese of Rochester
Joy in Christ, a way of life

Leases and Use Agreements for Congregations

Many of our parishes and missions have organizations that use church facilities on a regular basis. This isone way that we are doing the ministry of our communities. There are three typical ways that we allow useof our facilities:

l. An organization may use our facilities on a very limited basis: perhaps a community event once a year.

2. An organization may use our facilities for less than a year, but fairly regularly such as a special educational program sponsored by an outside organization.

3. An organization may use our facilities on a regular schedule for several years, weekly or daily for anongoing  program such as AA, a day care program, a food bank, etc.

The church may or may not receive reimbursement for use of the facilities. The Standing Committee has been working with several churches, developing leases and use agreements that help to describe who andhow the church is being used. Why do this? We are doing it to make sure both the church and the organization understand their mutual responsibilities while using your space. 

The Canons of our church require that we not encumber property without the consent of the Standing Committee. These rules exist to protect all who are involved in ministry in your church buildings. A lease isan encumbrance. If the organization uses your facilities for more than a year, you should have a lease withthe organization. You may or may not receive reimbursement or rent for use of the church areas. We aresuggesting that you enter into a lease with the organization using the one below. If the organization(s) iscurrently using your space and has been for more than a year, you do not need to request the approval ofthe Standing Committee; however you may wish to have us review it. If you are considering having a new organization use your space for more than ayear, please bring your proposed lease to the Standing Committee prior to signing. 

We are suggesting that you enter into a use agreement with any organization using your facilities during achurch year as described in #2. This does not come to the Standing Committee. An example agreement isbelow. 

For one time special use, the Church Insurance Agency can advise you on how best to insure any risk (overnight youth events, camp trips, public events, etc.). Church Insurance Agency covers most of theseshort-term events. We are willing to help you. Our goal is to have your community safe.

Please contact Todd Rubiano, who is handling property matters with the Standing Committee for assistancewith these documents and for review prior to coming to the Standing Community. He will assist you and schedule the meeting with the Standing Committee.


Determining the Terms for a Lease or Use Agreement

Use Agreement

Lease Agreement