A life filled with joy and spiritual depth – this is the life we desire. The way to such a life is through gratitude and generosity. How have you known God’s love? Food to eat, joy to share, woods to walk in—these are just a few of the good gifts God gives.
It is easy to seek happiness in all that we get and all that we have. Yet, how often have we experienced the truth that when we give, we get more in return? When taking flowers to a homebound friend or giving to help the homeless, we wonder who received more.
God has given us such a wonderful privilege to make a difference in people’s lives. As you make your pledge to CCPC, consider all the gifts God has given you. Then prayerfully consider the financial pledge you will make to the ministries and mission of CCPC.
For the next few weeks we will be celebrating God’s generosity, celebrating our church, and learning about the spirituality of money and giving. On Sunday, November 10, 2013, we will bring forward our estimates of giving for 2014 during the church service. Following the service, we will share a special brunch in Chadsey Hall.
- God's Blessings, Molly
Who supports CCPC?
WE support CCPC! Our financial support is an important part of our church membership.
About 90 percent of the operating budget for CCPC comes from the declarations of estimated giving received in response to the Annual Fund Drive. In fact, the church budget each year is set based on the pledges received. The operating budget is just over $1.2 million dollars.
There are real costs in a church community. To give but two examples, each worship service represents about $800 in expenses. Each child in church school represents about $730 in expenses. Over 100 groups and activities take place at CCPC. The church supports mission activities such as our church-1600based Transition Assistance Program (TAP) that provides services to serve the poor, homeless, unemployed, underemployed, and unserved men and women in the community, primarily by assisting them in obtaining essential information documents. CCPC also has an ongoing relationship with Shikokho, Kenya, to develop the medical clinic there. It takes ALL of us making our financial contribution to keep our church programs alive and vibrant, to build our vision of a church community that serves God by living his Word.
Why should I submit an estimate of giving?
Making an estimate up front gives the church a priority in our lives. It is part of our covenant of faith. As Christians, we believe that God’s greatest gift to us is our Savior Jesus Christ, and so, we should place God first not last. Making an estimated financial commitment helps us to be regular and systematic in our giving and lets our congregation know that it can count on our financial support barring any unusual circumstances. Our commitment becomes planned and not just a part of what is left over after all our other pledges have been met.
Other commitments? Yes, we all do have other commitments – the mortgage or rent, the utility company, even our own saving programs. Could it be that these pledges are of higher concern than living out our response to God in a systematic way?
How much should I estimate?
A very important part of financial support for the church is basing it on a percent of total household income. Proportionate giving is the model in scripture and still works very well today. Giving on a proportionate basis, and doing it regularly, enables us to do better household planning and makes it easier to increase our giving by increasing that percent of income. If you haven’t made a financial church commitment before, try starting at 1.5 percent of your gross annual income, and increase the percent in future years. The Biblical pledge is a tithe – 10 percent.
What if I can't complete my estimate?
A fact of life is that we cannot always keep the promises we make. Surely God understands that our financial giving may have to be changed. An estimate of financial giving is a statement that acknowledges the freedom of the giver to change that pledge at any time and that privilege is always honored. Giving can be adjusted – upward as well a downward – according to changing circumstances.
For your own growth, for the growth of the mission and ministry of your church and Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) around the world, for providing exciting opportunities for growth in Christian commitment, make an estimate of financial support for the 2014 ministries of CCPC. It’s an expression of faith!