2020 Pledge Appeal Message
October 24, 2019
Dear Northminster Member,
Our Stewardship Theme of “Preparing, Sharing and Daring” is inspired by 1 Peter 4:10-11.
And serve each other according to the gift each person has received, as good managers of God’s diverse gifts. Whoever speaks should do so as those who speak God’s word. Whoever serves should do so from the strength that God furnishes. Do this so that in everything God may be honored through Jesus Christ. To God be honor and power forever and always. Amen.
Peter writes to the earliest Christians but the message is relevant to us today, both as individuals and as members of that same body of Christ. God has given us gifts and made each of us capable of taking action. And we should strive to act and make use of these gifts for the glory of God through Jesus Christ. This is stewardship.
The nature of each individual’s gift is unique to them. Some of us have gifts of public speaking, while others have gifts of empathy. Some of us have financial resources, while other’s key resource is some free time. Some of us have a professional’s rare skill set, while others have an enthusiast’s knowledge. These are all gifts and each of us has many such gifts to share with one another and with the world. Similarly, our church has gifts. We have a vibrant youth program and can use that gift to act through the Appalachia Service Project, where other churches might not be able to so host. We have the gift of a beautiful sanctuary and can use that gift for worship. We extend the gifts of our church by hosting like-minded groups from our community and by supporting mission partners near and far.
This Stewardship season, we ask that you take the time to consider the gifts that you have been given and how your gifts relate to the gifts of Northminster. Then we ask you to act individually through a pledge to allow us to act communally as a church. We believe that the act of pledging itself is a spiritual action that can strengthen one’s faith. We ask that you also take time now to pledge your gifts of time and talent. Your pledge will likely have a financial aspect, as stewardship results in the very practical matters of keeping the doors open and our dedicated staff paid. 100% participation is our target and we ask you to use your pledges to help us achieve that goal this year. The nature and details of any pledge is up to you and is not the focus of our appeal. If the finances interest you, the narrative challenge budget enclosed requests an almost 5% increase from last year for a total budget of over $830,000. A mission summary highlights some of Northminster’s many mission partnerships. Please review those materials and ask questions about our priorities and plans. As you may know, the overwhelming majority of our revenue comes from pledges and we are reliant on those tithes and offerings to continue our good work and to maintain our facilities and our fellowship. In order to remain a strong and viable growing church, we must prepare the way and share our gifts.
The stewardship campaign this year is different than in year’s past because we are also starting a Feasibility Study for a capital campaign. That would be the “Daring” portion of “Preparing, Sharing and Daring”. The Stewardship campaign will begin and end at the same time as the Feasibility Study is getting underway. They both, naturally enough, ask you to prayerfully consider your finances. The two processes certainly overlap, but they are not the same. We hope that the material enclosed, including this letter, make the differences clear but please let us know if you have questions. We do not want the consideration of our longer-term plans to disrupt the realization of our more immediate goals. Please review all of these materials carefully to learn of the exciting activities in the months to come as we discern God’s will for our congregation and decide if this capital campaign vision is part of our journey or not.
We have enclosed a pledge card for this season’s Stewardship campaign. Return envelopes will be in the Narthex on Sunday for those who want them. To aid in our planning, we ask that you turn yours in as soon as possible. All pledges received in advance will be combined with those received on Commitment Sunday, November 10th, when we will dedicate our financial and time commitments as a united congregation. Please contact a member of the Stewardship Committee with any questions you may have.
Thank you for your consideration.
Bruce Caughran and Ben Buettell