In case you missed the Stewardship Sunday Kick-off on February 9, here are the highlights:
Laura Wall, Stewardship Committee
Susan Vigilante, Capital Campaign Team
Rev. Sue Goodwin, Minister of Congregational Life
Laura Wall, member of Stewardship committee, kicked off the Stewardship message. She is also a new member of the church, having joined this past December.
Laura’s words: I’ve spent my career running non-profit organizations and am currently the Executive Director of CASA for Children, here in Mercer County. For all the work that I do in the community, and for all the support that I provide to organizations that I care about, my largest gift by far is to UUCWC. That is because I receive so much from this place – it nourishes and supports me – but it’s also because I view this church as vitally important. We live in a very divisive time – and what this church represents – what Unitarian Universalism represents – is respect for alternative voices, respect for other faiths, and the worth and dignity of every person. What UUs provide is absolutely critical now. And so I support this place with a pledge that is the full extent of my ability to give. It’s a reflection of my commitment to our beautiful church home – and to the world I want to see bloom.
Our theme this month is Resilience, which is defined as a measure of how much you want something and how much you are willing to give to overcome obstacles. I think that’s a wonderful statement on our commitment to UUCWC as individuals, and to the greater community, as a congregation. I hope that as members and friends of this important and beautiful place, we consider how much we want UUCWC to thrive and what, together, we can do to ensure that it happens. Thank you. Laura Wall
Next, Susan Vigilante, Co-chair of the Capital Campaign with Jayme Trott kicked off Phase 2 of the Capital Campaign.
Susan’s words: After seeing some of the teasers from the Capital Campaign, I hope that you are as excited as we are to see this vision come to life. We are once again partnering this year with the Stewardship team so that you can be holistic about your upcoming Stewardship and Capital Campaign financial decisions.
I want to remind you that your annual pledge to Stewardship is the oil that runs the engine of this church. Your Capital Campaign contribution enables us to grow and meet the needs of a diverse and ever growing congregation.
Today we are kicking off Phase 2 of the Capital Campaign. Expectations are that we will break ground later this year. We have raised $926,000 to date and need to close a gap of approximately $400,000 to complete our vision.
Then Reverend Sue gave her Sermon “It is Better to Give than to Receive”
“Generosity requires us to relinquish something, and we can’t do this if we are not glad for all we have. Without gratitude, the giving hand becomes a closed fist.” — Sallie Tisdale, a Buddhist Teacher.
Studies on giving patterns make for interesting reading. Years ago, there was an expectation that church members would tithe 10% of their household income. Nowadays 5% is more realistic. Some people understand this, but many do not. Surprisingly, it is often those who could give freely who are often closed fisted.
Two groups of folks are most likely to give generously to their churches. Those who earn $10 million a year. (They do give. Most of them.)
The second group is a bit of a surprise, those who earn between $45-$50K. The in-betweens —those who earn more than $50K but less than $10million….NOT SO MUCH.
It turns out that when we have less, we are often more accustomed to sharing and to relying on one another. When we make money, we easily buy into the need to be self-sufficient…until we realize that money alone cannot supply what are hearts are longing for. Oddly, perhaps ironically, having money, being comfortable, being self-sufficient, can block us from connecting with the interconnectedness of all beings.
Stewardship and Capital Campaign packets will be in the lobby again on Sunday, February 16. After that they will be mailed. There were Capital Project updates after both services and will be again on Tuesday, February 18, at 7pm. Please come, learn and ask questions.
To hear Rev. Sue’s full sermon, click here.
See the Annual Giving page for more information, including the pledge brochure and an online giving form.