Have you ever looked back at your prior self and seen how you’ve grown? If you were to ask me years ago, “Why do we pledge?” I may have given you a practical response: “We pledge to set expectations for next year’s budget. Operationally, we need to know the income we expect from pledging to pay our staff, facilities maintenance, and bills.” Truthful and to the point; nevertheless, a definition of stewardship that is flat and dry.
Except, I have been unable to reconcile such a definition that fits this place. For me, Epiphany is warm, vibrant, and nurturing. Epiphany is growing, thriving, and connecting people in meaningful ways that fill my soul and sustain me.
As co-chair of Stewardship, I’ve been contemplating the scripture of our Stewardship campaign: “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:21) Then, on Stewardship Sunday, Rev. Nick shared with us, “Stewardship is everything you do after you say ‘YES’ to God.” Then Rev. Janelle preached. “This is obvious, but trees don’t eat their own fruit, right? The whole point of bearing fruit is for others.” We are “Stewards, not owners; relinquishing control and leaving room for surprise.”
And I listened to this podcast from The Bible Project that explores a story about two Harvard Business School Graduates who are confronted with a biblical view of money that changes their lives. (It’s worth the hour!)
The result is my answer to “Why do we Pledge to Epiphany?” has transformed.
We pledge to Epiphany because:
We believe that we will be transformed by sharing our lives with each other.
We care for our exceptional staff’s financial security in the form of salary & benefits.
We are guardians of this place and everything we have belongs to God.
If our ‘why’ is transformed, then determining how much to pledge deserves to be reconsidered. That said, the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ of pledging are the same:
What does a pledge do?
In the Episcopal Church, we fund our own budget. Pledges fund 90% of Epiphany’s budget. We raise our own money and we can only budget for what we expect to receive. For example, we cannot commit to salaries for clergy and staff without pledges to match.
When should I pledge?
Submit your pledge by November 5th. If we don’t know your pledge, we cannot budget.
How should I pledge?
Pledges need to be received in writing or directly entered by you into Realm (our secure database) for audit purposes. Our Finance Administrator and Treasurer thank you!
How much should I pledge?
The amount is discerned between you and God. A preliminary estimate is the median pledge donation needs to be $5,500 to sustain the current budget. We receive annual pledges of $100 and others that exceed $25,000. All pledge amounts are appreciated.
Where can I find more financial details?
The 2024 Stewardship Brochure
On October 15 for an informal discussion after the 8:00 am service.
On October 15 at the State of the Church after the 10:00 am service.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of our Stewardship Committee will respond.
Co-Chair of Stewardship