Has the Detroit priest retirement plan changed in recent years?

Since its inception nearly 45 years ago, the Archdiocese of Detroit has utilized various funding sources for the Priests’ Pension Plan and its predecessor benefit funds for retired archdiocesan priests.

Effective July 1, 1984, the Archdiocese of Detroit implemented a defined benefit pension plan covering all ordained archdiocesan priests. A retirement program for archdiocesan priests existed prior to July 1, 1984; however, no formal plan description existed and contributions to and benefits from the Plan were not based on actuarially computed information. Actuarial calculations of the present value of accrued benefits and the amount of the annual contribution to the Plan, among others, were performed for the first time as of June 30, 1984.

From its inception until 1994, gifts to the annual Catholic Services Appeal funded the Priests’ Pension Plan. Some funds raised through the 1993-95 Stewards for Tomorrow capital campaign also contributed to the Plan. In 1994 these sources of funding changed to a parish assessment-based system through which $9,885 is currently allocated annually for each priest serving a parish.

In September 2006, an annual special collection was approved to help each parish with its per-priest assess­ment and enable parishioners to directly participate in strengthening the Priests’ Pension Plan. This special collection, With Thanks for Their Service in Christ, is held annually each fall.