Stewardship Giving

June 25th, 2018 by Kali Lewis

Plans are being finalized for the annual United Methodist Women’s summer picnic. This year the theme will be a Hawaiian luau; so shake out your favorite muumuu. put on your leis and plan to attend. The event will be Tuesday, August 7, at noon at the church. Janet Helmbold is in charge of securing the speaker and the meal, being planned by Lynn LaRose and her crew, will feature pulled pork sandwiches – yumm! There will be no July UMW meeting so the picnic will be a welcome addition to summer activities. Come join us.​
​ We at Manistique FUMC are still feeling the loss of the passing of long-time member Darlene Pruess. In her memory, her portrait  has been hung in the church Fellowship Hall as a reminder of all the “fellowship” programs she initiated at our church. It has also been decided that a memorial gift from her family will be sent to Camp Michigamme to be used in the construction of a craft building as she was so fond of craft projects.​
​ Mark you calendar now and plan to attend the upcoming Pie Auction set for Sunday, August 26. The fund-raiser will take place following the worship service at the end of our Fellowship hour. This is sure to be a fun event and a tasty way to treat yourself to some of our cooks’ specialties.​
​ Looking ahead: The annual Marquette District UMW meeting/celebration will be held Tuesday, October 2, at Zeba UMC in L’Anse, MI. Those who have completed the Reading Program will be recognized at that time, so those of you who are taking part in the program are reminded to complete your goal soon and get your list to Mary Prater by early September. More information on the District Meeting and registration forms will be available soon.​

We are asking everyone to prayerfully consider a few concepts on giving and we pray that you can find a way to see one or more of these ideas that just might work for you.

1.     Frequency of giving: You might give each week, each month, or maybe annually. Would it be possible to think of giving that amount every week, even if you cannot attend some Sundays? This is important because our bills are still due regardless of our attendance, and when people give consistently, this helps make sure we have a level stream of contributions to cover those expenses. There is also a method of direct deposit that some members choose to use where they have their donations automatically deducted from their checking or savings account on a set schedule. This is convenient for both the member and the church as it’s one less thing to have to remember to do and ensures that your donation is received on your terms instead of dependent upon memory or the weather.  We’ve included an Authorization Form in today’s handout for you to consider if this is right for you.
2.     Amount of giving: 2 Corinthians 9:6-12 reminds us that each one should give as you have decided in your heart. You should not be sad when you give, and you should not give because you feel forced to give.  When people give slightly more each week, the compound effect is significant. Each year our insurances, utilities, maintenance and supply costs increase and just a few more dollars helps us cover those increasing costs. Every little bit helps—no single additional dollar is insignificant.
3.     Amount of people giving: We don’t count on contributions from visitors, but when people do visit they generally give. We hope that our beautiful church and message inspires those visitors to come back again and our ultimate goal is to increase our membership. If you have a friend, neighbor or relative that you think would enjoy our message, we encourage you to take a moment to reach out to them and invite them to come with you some Sunday. We have a wonderful hospitality area with delicious treats and refreshments you can share with them and allow us to warmly welcome them and thank them for visiting with us.
4.     Special fundraisers: We enjoy the comradery of making delicious pasties we can sell to raise money for our church. These are great gifts and a smart meal plan for when company drops in. If you have room in your freezer, we hope you take a couple home with you when they are available. You might also have an idea about how we can raise money for our various missions and we would like to hear from you. In the pew there is a pad of paper that you can write down your idea and share it with us by putting it in the attendance book at the end of the isle.
Talking about money is not the easiest part of a church, but it is necessary to keep our members informed about our finances. We do not want to make anyone feel uncomfortable and we trust that you will do whatever you can to help our church bring more people to God.

Finally, as Matthew 10:8 says, “We have freely received, so we must also freely give.”  In this passage, Jesus commissions his disciples to go out with minimal possessions to proclaim the good news and perform miracles in his name. Good stewards are givers, because they were first receivers. They trust that God will provide for them, through the community where they have been sent, so we, as being first receivers of His grace, we must now give back of our talents and gifts as we as we feel so moved to do so. May it be so, we ask this in the name of Him who gave to us first.  Amen.