End of Year Giving

12/22/2011

Don’t you love the mail at this time of year? Not only are there Christmas cards and letters; there are also more solicitations for your money. That’s because we are most generous at this time of year. 

 

Christmas is the celebration that God came to live among us. God’s sacrificial love in Jesus set the pattern for how we are to live among each other. Especially at Christmas, we are reminded to think beyond ourselves.  It’s part of how we connect with the sacrificial love of Jesus Christ. 

 

In the connection of The United Methodist Church, we share with each other the cost of doing ministry beyond the local congregation. We make sacrifices to do this ministry because God works through us together more effectively than through each of us alone.

 

We can be pleased that so much good work happens because of the generosity of our people. Together we are leading ministry in issues of poverty and improving health globally, creating new places of worship and revitalizing existing ones as well as developing principled Christian leaders for the church and for the world.  These ministries depend upon our contributions. 

 

The churches of our Annual Conference are mission minded. In 2010 our congregations gave over $18.5 million for shared connectional ministry (apportionments) and another $21 million in outreach ministry beyond that. Over $8 million of that $21 million was for United Methodist mission and outreach beyond what our conference budget supports.  Nearly $13 million of that $21 million was for non-United Methodist outreach such as food banks, non-connectional mission work, tragedy relief, emergency assistance, etc. 

 

There’s no lack of generosity among our people. We are generous because God is generous. 

 

As of the end of November, our churches have contributed 61.71% of our shared connectional ministry.  Some of our congregations have already completed their shared connectional giving.  Others are working hard to do so.  It’s our hope that all our churches will give every effort to contribute 100% of their conference ministry support. It makes a difference. 

 

There are many needs this season. Remember the work God is doing through our shared connectional ministry. After our shared ministry goals are met, we encourage you to look next to other United Methodist ministries, such as Fair Share goals, and then to other places of need to share God’s extravagant generosity.  Together we can bless many lives in the name of Jesus Christ.