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Three ideas to get you started

Three Ideas to get you started
Cynthia McChesney, Missioner for Stewardship and Legacy Giving

If getting started on Year-Round Stewardship has seemed like a good idea, but a bit overwhelming... here are three initiatives perfect for this time of year. Consider trying one or all three to kickstart your efforts.

1. Narrative Budget: A Narrative Budget, also known as a ministry budget, provides a fresh way to communicate your church's financials. While a line-item budget is crucial for tracking expenses, a Narrative Budget visually illustrates spending through the lens of congregational ministries. It demystifies stewardship, offering members a clear view of the impact of their financial support on church ministry.

We wrote about Narrative Budgets in more detail back in 2019, (see here) and developed a helpful booklet to walk you through the process. Download it here.

2. Quarterly Statements: Sending Quarterly Statements to pledging households is a simple and effective way to keep parishioners informed about their contributions. Beyond displaying pledged and paid amounts, these statements become more impactful when they express gratitude and share how donations make a difference.

Email or mail? While sending Quarterly Statements through the mail might incur slightly higher costs and take a bit longer, the impact is significantly greater and more personal than an email. It's worth considering this option seriously. Sending statements in the mail ensures a tangible and thoughtful connection with pledging households.

But no window envelopes! The last thing you want a pledge statement to look like is a bill. Link to more information on Quarterly Statements.

3. Stewardship Team: It's spring! (Well, almost). Why not use this time to ensure your church's Stewardship Team is not a one-person show. Assembling a dedicated team is crucial, and doing so now gives folks time to get to know one another and to map out year-round stewardship activities, not just focus on the annual pledge campaign.

Relying on one or a very few individuals is neither sustainable nor conducive to fostering a deep understanding of stewardship. What might they work on now? The Narrative Budget and Quarterly Statements are two ideas!

Looking for more ideas? Shoot me an email or phone call and let's talk.

Cynthia McChesney
Missioner for Stewardship and Legacy Giving
phone: 973-430-9909