Brethren Academy offers Clergy Tax Seminar 2023

A release from the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership

Join us for this informational and instructive seminar! Clergy Tax Seminar 2023, Jan. 28, 2023, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern time). Sponsors are the Brethren Academy, the Church of the Brethren Office of Ministry, and Bethany Theological Seminary.

Students, clergy, and anyone who deals with clergy finances are invited to participate in this online Zoom seminar.
— Learn how to prepare clergy taxes correctly and legally.
— Comply with regulations while maximizing tax deductions.
— Earn 0.3 continuing education units (CEUs), for the first 2 sessions only.

Clergy Tax Seminar
Jan. 28, 2023, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. (Eastern)

During this five-hour webinar, you will learn a great deal about clergy tax law, tax preparation, and clergy compensation. It will be a resource-full day, so plan to take care of yourself as you learn. Eat when you’re hungry. Get a drink when you’re thirsty. Stand up and walk around when you need to. But most importantly, ask questions! If you have a question, at least six other people are wondering the same thing!

In more upcoming opportunities from the Brethren Academy, “Introduction to Educational Ministry” will be offered online from Jan. 11 to March 7, 2023, with Gene Hollenberg, executive director of Camp Mack, as instructor. CEU credit is available. Said a description: “How do we learn? Physically, learning is described as a process of sensing stimuli, short-term memory, and long-term memory that creates a series of brain pathways in the brain. The more a pathway is used, the stronger it becomes. From a more practical standpoint, however, we learn when we are motivated to learn.” The deadline to register is Dec. 7. Find out more at


11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 0.15 CEUs: “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Clergy Taxation, Part 1.” Topics covered: IRS definitions of ministers (ministerial “status”) and of ministerial work (ministerial “services”) as well as the three kinds of income ministers receive, the two kinds of taxes ministers pay, and the various ways ministers can pay those taxes during the tax year.

1 to 2:30 p.m., 0.15 CEUs: “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Clergy Taxation, Part 2.” Topics covered: Housing exclusion, parsonages and parsonage adjustments, and self-employment taxes, as well as ways to reduce total taxes.

3 to 4 p.m.: “Completing the Clergy Tax Return.” Zeke Zacharias, pastor at Litlold Church, has a typical clergy tax return to complete. We will walk through it with him using H&R Block’s Premium (for self-employed people) version of downloadable software.


Deb Oskin has been doing clergy tax returns since 1989, when her husband left seminary to pastor a small, rural Church of the Brethren congregation. As a pastor’s wife and later as a tax professional, she learned the tax problems and pitfalls associated with the IRS identification of clergy as “hybrid employees.” In 2011, after 12 years with H&R Block, she left to start her own tax practice, specializing in clergy taxes. Clergy clients now make up 86 percent of her client base. She was ordained in 2004 when she was called by Living Peace Church of the Brethren in Columbus, Ohio, to be their peace minister to the wider community. She served as chair of the board of Southern Ohio District 2007-2011 and as moderator of Southern Ohio and Kentucky District in 2018. She is currently chair of the Church of the Brethren’s Pastoral Compensation and Benefits Advisory Committee.

Registration and cost

Registration is $40 per person (generally nonrefundable to keep fees and overhead low). Current Brethren Academy, Bethany Theological Seminary, and Earlham School of Religion students may attend at no cost, although registration is still required to allow us to provide web access to the seminar. Instructions and handouts and a Zoom link will be sent prior to the event. Registrations are not complete until payment is received. For quality reasons, registrations may be capped at 85 people. Prompt registration is advised. The registration deadline is Jan. 18, 2023. Register at

— Fran Massie of the Brethren Academy staff provided this article to Newsline.


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