Retire Our Debt Campaign Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is this all about? MVUC has a fabulous, renovated and expanded Commons, an updated kitchen and a new platform in the Meeting House. However, we still owe about $500,000 for these wonderful and much needed improve-ments. It is time to pay off this debt.

How are we dealing with this $500,000 debt now? We are currently paying interest only (about $2,000 a month) on a line of credit with a rate of prime plus ½ point. There is no prepayment penalty.  Each month’s payment is based on the outstanding balance at that time.  This loan comes due in September 2019. A new loan would have to be renegotiated if this one is not paid off by September 2019.

Why do we still owe $500,000? The MVUC “old timers” will vouch for the fact that these three projects resulted in dramatic improvements. Unfortunately, these improvements cost more than we had anticipated. Among other things, Fairfax County required us to install a fire suppressing sprinkler system in the entire meeting house and to make our restrooms ADA compliant.

What is the plan for paying off the $500,000? Church leadership has proposed that a “Retire Our Debt” plan be structured as a “Three to One match,” with $375,000 coming from the Endowment Fund and the Congregation coming up with the additional $125,000. So, for every dollar that the Congregation contributes, the Endowment Fund will contribute three dollars to pay off our debt.

Will this deplete our Endowment Fund? The MVUC Endowment Fund has a balance of almost $1,100,000. As of June 2017, three rental properties owned by Gertrude Kornfeld have been transferred to MVUC. It is estimated that when these three properties are sold, they will net about $700,000. This will bring the MVUC Endowment Fund close to $1,800,000.

Couldn’t we just pay this all off using Endowment funds? The Church leadership does not support paying off the entire loan from the Endowment Fund but enthusiastically supports a plan that includes the majority of the money coming from the Endowment Fund augmented by a Capital Campaign. They feel that this strikes a good balance between addressing a current need and also ensuring that our Endowment Fund continues to grow.

What if the Congregation contributes more than $125,000? The Church leadership is optimistic that the Congregation will surpass this goal. If it does, that would be great and would reduce the amount that we would need to take from the Endowment Fund.

What if the Congregation doesn’t make the $125,000 goal? The Church leadership is very optimistic that we can make this goal. However, if for some reason we fall short, then the Church leadership would have to decide if the shortage should come from the Endowment Fund or if we should take out a new loan.

How long will the campaign run? The Retire Our Debt campaign will kick off on Sunday, October 1, 2017 and run until December 3, 2017.

How do I contribute?

You can contribute online, or by check.

To contribute online:

  1. Log in using the “Members Login” button or click here: I’ll Help Retire Our Debt
  2. Once you log in, select the “Giving” tab on the menu:

Retire Our Debt Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

  1. Enter your gift amount and select “Continue.”

Retire Our Debt Amount

  1. On the next screen under “Fund” select “Retire Our Debt Campaign.” Enter the amount of your gift.  Click “Continue” and complete the remaining steps.

Retire Our Debt Help

To Give by Check:

You may also write a check to MVUC with “Retire Our Debt” in the memo line.

Mail your check to:

Retire Our Debt Campaign
1909 Windmill Lane
Alexandria, VA, 22307

You can find more details about payment options, and a pledge form here: Retire Our Debt Financial Info and Pledge Form

Are contributions tax deductible? Yes. These contributions will be included on the annual tax statement that MVUC provides at the end of the year.

May I make a multiyear payment? Yes, you may spread your contribution over an extended period. You may elect to make payments weekly, monthly, or quarterly. The final payment must be made by Sept 30, 2019. 

Should I reduce my stewardship commitment in order to give to the Retire Our Debt campaign? NO, these are two different categories. While paying off our debt is very important, our annual stewardship commitments enable us to keep the Church running from day-to-day.

What’s with the blue dots on the name tags? Once we retire our debt, we will have blue skies overhead! These dots mean a person has made a contribution to the Retire Our Debt campaign. This is helpful for several reasons: 1) it keeps the Retire Our Debt campaign volunteers from continuing to ask you if you can contribute, 2) it shows that you have been supportive and that we should say thank you, and 3) if someone doesn’t know what the dot means, it is another opportunity to explain our Retire Our Debt campaign.

What if I have more questions? Please send an e-mail to, stop by the Retire Our Debt table in the Commons or call Joan at 703-768-5751.


MVUC Renovated Meeting House

NOW – Our fabulous renovated Meeting House with a lovely, bright, spacious and welcoming Commons, ADA compliant bathrooms, a newly-renovated kitchen, fire protection sprinkler system and so much more!

THEN – Prior to renovation, our old Meeting House with a dark, cramped and noisy Commons, outdated bathrooms and kitchen all in desperate need of updating.