We are a new and small congregation. We have limited resources, and we must make the best use of the resources that we have. This has two profound implications for how we go forward fiscally together:
- Our budget will not look like a normal church budget. There may not be certain ministries represented that you might expect--like a full salary for a pastor or really any pay for our other staff--and there may be some expenses that seem like a stretch considering our size--like our commitment to give 12% straight off the top every month to support our bishop. But we do believe what we fund represents our mission and values as a congregation. That's where feedback is so important.
- Everyone needs to play their part to support our work or we cannot go forward at all. Gone are the days of church endowments and contingency funds. What has arrived today is this: trusting in the provision of Almighty God for all our needs. I don't know about you, but the latter seems more fun!
But there is far more to stewardship than just giving money. The old phrase, "time, treasure, and talent" may be trite, but it rings true. Being a small church means that we need all hands on deck to perform the ministry. To continue the maritime metaphor, our congregation is not a luxury liner, where the minority work while the majority relaxes, but a navy frigate, where everyone has his or her duty! (Why, even Paul likes the maritime metaphor: Ephesians 4:7-16. Cf. Romans 12:3-8, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31a).
All of this and more will be talked about at this very important meeting. Let's call it the "Laborers for the Harvest" meeting (cf. Luke 10:2)..
Considering the importance of this call, I, Father Adam, strongly encourage everyone to plan on staying after the service to attend this meeting. Put it in your calendars and plan for and around it.
We should be done by 7:00 at the latest.