For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
St Francis of Assisi
TO ENABLE OUR VISION WE NEED TO BE A PARISH FOCUSSED UPON ‘GIVING’ AND ‘SERVING’
St Francis makes the point that ultimately giving is more rewarding than receiving. We would like you to think about the amazing gifts that you have been given by God, and then to ask yourself whether you are using these to the full in His service. There are many ways in which we can do both at St James’ and St Mary and St John’s.
Giving of your talents and skills in service:
- Do you use your talents and skills to good effect to spread the Good News of Jesus on your ‘front-line’, at work, home or voluntary group – wherever that happens to be?
- Can you help us with some of the jobs that we need extra help with in church at the present? For example :
> Sidespeople (welcomers) and Coffee rota volunteers
> Lead the intercessions – SJ or SMSJ
> Help with communications – Publicity Officer
> Jobs within the Finance team ( see Colum Devine)
> Help with one of our Young Peoples’ Clubs on a Sunday (at both worship centres) or join the Assemblies team.
> Helping with Simple Lunch (see Revd Mark-Aaron)
Giving of money:
- It costs us over £20,000 every month just to meet our current costs and expenditure as a parish. Were you aware of that? Does it shock you?
- The generous financial support of long standing, usually older, church members is not being matched by the levels of giving from members of our congregations who have joined us over the last few years. The disparity in average giving is over 3 times, which has huge implications for our sustainability. Regular and realistic giving by everyone is essential. Monthly gifts through your bank are convenient and secure.
- The church receives no money from the government. We are heavily reliant on your generous giving to meet our costs.
If you’d like to know more about what our money is spent on, please see either Colum Devine or Robert Alder or pick up a leaflet.
WHY DO WE NEED TO CONTINUE TO REVIEW PLANNED GIVING? WHAT’S CHANGED?
Put simply – our costs, both predictable and one off, have risen and despite the great work of the Stewardship team led by Robert Alder, we continue to have to regularly review how we can achieve a long term viable future with the income we get from Planned Giving. The long term problem is that regular giving is just about keeping pace with increases in costs year on year.
WHAT ARE WE DOING TO ENSURE WE USE OUR INCOME WISELY?
- Our Finance team, led by Colum Devine, are constantly and vigorously looking to ensure we manage our cost base.
- Focus on budget management with all key areas of church function.
- Our Purchasing Policy is being strictly enforced.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?
Spend some time thinking about the questions below:
- What do you spend on subscriptions to other organisations that you belong to, such as gyms and sports clubs, during the year? Should you give at least a similar amount to your church family?
- What do you spend on cars in the course of a year? Is the church not as important to the spiritual welfare of you and your children as the cars are to your mobility?
- How much did you spend on your family holiday this year? Do you give an equal amount to your church family during the year?
- Do you think carefully and realistically about your giving to the church?
- If you don’t do so already, are you able to give by a regular monthly payment through your bank?
WE NEED YOU PLEASE TO:
- Start a regular monthly gift to church through your bank.
- Increase your current monthly rate of giving.
- Make a one-off donation, if the above are not possible.
You can download Bank Standing Order forms and a Gift Aid Declaration form here