Giving as Worship

One of the delicate issues to discuss in the church is giving.  When we join the church, we pledge to “faithfully participate in its ministries by your prayers, your presence, your gifts, your service, and your witness.”   Pastors, therefore, need not be shy about asking folks to pray, to be present, to serve, or to share their testimony.  Nor should pastors be shy about asking folks to share their gifts – time, talents, and money.  Yet, often we are.

You may relax, for this is not an appeal for you to reach deeper into your bank account because we need additional funds for a special project. Throughout my adult life, I have given faithfully to the church out of a sense of gratitude, not out of a sense of obligation. 

I truly believe that giving, that supporting the ministries of the church is an act of worship. We buy gifts for those we love; likewise, we give gifts to God - through His Church - out of love and respect for who God is and for all that God has done for us.  Remember, that God does not need our money. Our offering, however, reveals our sense of love and gratitude to our Creator, Sustainer, and Savior. And we know that God grants us gifts - blessings - so that we may be a blessing to others..

I have always found it easier to remind folks of the importance of giving when churches are “financially sound,” because we sense God’s presence and blessings.  I once served a church that continually asked folks to increase their giving, “to keep the doors open.” I have little interest in simply surviving. Rather than giving to a church “to keep the boat afloat,” I would much rather invest my gifts in a boat that is going somewhere, in a church living out its mission of reaching new people. I am grateful that Unionville is a congregation that understands the importance of being faithful stewards of our gifts and blessings, and continues to use them to reach others for Christ.
While this is not an appeal for increased giving, it is an article to introduce a new means of giving – that is, electronic giving (or e-giving).  We are pleased to announce a convenient new way to make your regular offerings. With our new electronic giving program, you can easily set up a ‘recurring giving’ schedule or make one-time contributions.  It’s convenient for you and provides consistency which is helpful for the church.  If you currently give on a weekly basis, you will no longer need to write out 52 checks a year or prepare 52 envelopes.  Even when travel, illness or other circumstances cause you to miss a Sunday, Unionville will continue to receive your contributions on an uninterrupted basis.  I encourage you to read the article “Paperless Giving” (in the September 2014 newsletter) to read how one retired pastor came to appreciate e-giving.
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Enrollment is simple.  You may begin your enrollment by clicking the "Online Giving" button below, or contact the church office.  We have chosen Vanco Services as our e-giving partner.  Vanco is endorsed by the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) of the United Methodist Church.

Text Box:  Our Finance Team has made the decision to offer this service for several reasons:  First, the way money is handled in today’s society has changed dramatically.  Many families – especially young families – write very few checks these days.  For them, electronic giving fits in perfectly with the way they manage their finances.  Most younger families are already familiar with the way electronic payment works because it’s the method they use to make their mortgage payments or pay their utility bills.  You may not be aware that most of our church’s bills are paid electronically; our banking is primarily online. 

Secondly, some young people feel that passing the plate puts people on the spot.  One pastor tells the story of a member of his weekly Counting Team straightening a stack of dollar bills asking if people thought the church was a “dollar movie theater.” The pastor sensed that many folks, feeling pressured, put in a dollar in the offering plate. To many people, passing the offering plate is an awkward time.   

Third, e-giving provides a means for the church’s income to become more stable. As people travel, they may continue to offer consistent support to the ministries of the church.
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A final thought:  Offerings will continue to be received via the traditional means of cash and checks. A time of celebrating our Tithes and Offerings will continue to be a part of our time of worship. And those who participate in e-giving will receive cards that read, “I Contribute Electronically, which may be placed in the offering plate as an act of worship and giving.

Let me assure you that this is a safe and confidential means of supporting the ministries of Unionville United Methodist Church. I encourage you to give it prayerful consideration. 

I can also assure you that the church can count on the Myers household’s enrollment. If you have any questions, please contact the church office or Pastor Doug.        

  Click here to enroll in online giving.