Dear Church Family, Visitors and Friends
Below is the Stewardship letter that was mailed out to our faith community a few weeks ago, along with pledge cards for the coming church year.
As we think about the gifts that the Magi brought to our newborn King Jesus this Sunday in the celebration of the Epiphany, it seems fitting that we would at the same time be thinking about not only all the gifts that he has given us… but more importantly what we can share of our time, talents and treasure for Him.
I have heard people say that the church is always talking about money. I disagree, in fact I don’t think we talk about money enough. If as a church we are to represent Jesus Christ, it’s clear that Jesus spoke about money a lot, not that he wanted it, but that when it comes to money that is generally where our biggest challenge is to truly trust Him.
In teaching the Crown Financial Ministries course to parishioners in the past I know that there are over 2,300 verses in scripture that deal with the subject of money and how we should be using it.
As you heard in the Stewardship sermon given on November 8th in all the churches I believe that our giving is the opportunity for us to share our gratitude. It is great to be part of a faith community that comes together weekly to count our blessings and to say thank-you Lord for your goodness and grace to us.
Whatever circumstances we find ourselves in, we need to know God is going through it with us, be it joy or sorrow, health or illness, success or failure, acceptance or rejection: God is with us in a very personal way. We show thanks in worship, in prayer, in service, and in bringing before Him our Tithes and offerings. With our generous offerings we express our gratitude for God’s great generosity to us.
Our giving reflects that we put our trust in the Lord that we are grateful for His Love and grace, and we believe in His mission to bring His love to others through you and me via His church.
We may be uncomfortable talking about money “in church” but it is at the core of our faith. As we say yes to His will, including sharing our treasure, and through sharing with not only our local community, but across the nation as well as all over the world, that is outreach.
We have already sent donations to The Adirondack Community Outreach Center in North Creek, as well as to many of the School districts around us for operation Santa Clause, among other projects, to help feed families and give Christmas gifts to children who might not be able to have anything under the tree.
Through the Samaritan’s Purse “Operation Christmas Child” program, new to the mission this year, more than 50 shoeboxes were collected and will help fulfill our worldwide outreach to children in other countries also.
Our experience at St Christopher’s on Halloween this year with 200+ children showing up at our doorstep I hope showed us the potential there is for growth in our communities. Please be praying for God to reveal His will in how we might spread the Gospel message among our neighbors.
There are several parishioners who do not fill out a pledge card year after year, however they give generously and regularly. But when a pledge card is filled out it helps your vestry to budget for programs that support our education, outreach to our communities, Mission trips to other countries and the expenses for upkeep of all our facilities and our staff.
Your financial gift to the mission empowers us to share the Good News of Christ with all who we meet.
I challenge you to prayerfully consider your pledge commitment to the mission. A pledge card has been included with this mailing. Please seek the Lord’s guidance as you examine this critical area of your spiritual life, and open your heart to His spirit that He may help you grow.
We would like to have these envelopes placed in the collection plate at the service you attend on or before commitment Sunday, which this year will be on Sunday January 10th, the celebration of the baptism of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is very fitting in that it was the first time that the Trinity revealed itself as the Son came up out of the water of baptism, The Father said that with His Son he was well pleased, and the Holy Spirit came upon the Son in the form of a dove.
If you cannot be with us that day your commitment envelope can be mailed to the treasurer directly, and know that your pledge is confidential information.
I pray your pledge commitment will bless you and others for Christ.
The Reverend John Cairns and your Vestry
PS…. If you have ideas that have worked in the past, or new ideas for helping us involve the community around our churches please speak to Deacon Nancy or myself at any time.