Stewardship: Giving Back to God

"...We thank you, our God, and praise your glorious Name ...for all things come from you and we have only given back what is yours already."

(I Chronicles 29:13-14)

What Does the Bible Say About Stewardship?

Give without show - "Let not your left hand know what your right hand is doing." (Matt.6:3).

Give liberally - "He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully." (II Cor. 9:6)

Give cheerfully - "Let everyone give as his heart tells him, neither grudgingly, nor under compulsion, for God loves the man that gives cheerfully." (II Cor. 9:7)

How much should I give?

Your pledge is what you decide it to be.

The proportion of your income you give to your Church depends upon:

How much you love Christ and His Church.

Your personal awareness of the needs of the Church and of the importance of the Church's role in the world today.

Your willingness to sacrifice.

Your recognition that regular and sacrificial giving to your Church is a measure of your personal gratitude toward God.

True Stewardship is giving back to Christ's Church (for the perpetuation of God's work) a percentage of your financial resources - in proportion to the blessings you have received.

The amount each family gives will be different, because the resources of each family are different. Give in proportion to what you have been given; but give sacrificially.

The Bible encourages tithing as a guideline for giving. Tithing is when one gives cheerfully and voluntarily 10% of one's annual income for the glory and support of His Church. If you cannot give 10%, begin at 2 or 3% and challenge yourself to increase the percentage each year. God will honor your commitment. God will provide.

Parish Council Recommendations

It is recommended that each parishioner review the cost of operating the Church before submitting their pledge. Most consider an average of $100 per month from each family ($1,200 annually) to maintain an Orthodox Church with active ministries.

Should I increase my pledge over the previous year?

Decide what you will give; then increase that amount by $20 per month. If you give $20 more each month, it probably be a small sacrifice to your family. But, $20 more per month from each family would make a great difference in the life of St. Philip Church. Youth, education and outreach ministries could be greatly expanded.

Who is included in the stewardship program?

The Stewardship pledge includes husband, wife, children and all dependents. If self-supporting members of the family over the age of 18 live with their parents, they would make their own separate pledge. Family membership allows each Orthodox spouse voting privileges in parish matters.

What will my stewardship pledge cover?

Your Stewardship Pledge will cover your annual Parish Membership commitment, but not special offerings or projects such as the Building Fund.

When does the stewardship program begin?

Our Stewardship Program for the next calendar year will begin during November. At that time, all our members will be invited to pledge a percentage of their resources to do their "fair share" to support our Church for the upcoming calendar year. Payments toward the pledges will begin in January.

Members who do not make their pledge (inactive members) will be contacted by members of the Stewardship Committee who can explain the program to them.

Do I have to disclose my income?

Absolutely not!

How shall I pay my stewardship pledge?

In the manner that you choose.

Weekly or monthly offerings are suggested because it is easier to manage small, regular contributions rather than large accumulated amounts.

It is also easier for the Parish to plan its budget if the income is regular throughout the year.

But what if after I make my pledge, sickness or misfortunate or loss of job occurs?

Your pledge is not a contract. A parishioner may at any time make a private phone call or write a confidential letter to the Parish Priest to lower or discontinue his pledge until circumstances allow him to resume his original pledge. 

Commitment of Faith

Yes! I want to support God's work through my Church of St. Philip. Here is my Commitment of Faith for the year 2012, representing my best efforts to return to God a portion of that which belongs to Him.