It has been a long time since I have written an article for a church newsletter but the opportunity came up at the last church council meeting and I felt nudged to do it.
I have served and participated in a number of programs and activities involving stewardship and giving at a number of Lutheran churches I have attended during my adult life. However these are much different times today than in the past years of my life.
Church attendance has been greatly diminished by the pandemic and many members find themselves attending through online viewing. There are more challenges to maintaining the cohesiveness of all the pieces of ministry provided through St. Paul, which has temporarily been disrupted by the impact and severity of the virus.
Notwithstanding the challenges and obstacles that have been presented these past two years for our church and its ministries, St. Paul continues to provide God’s abundant love to those around us and gives hope and love to those who so desperately need it in these difficult times.
The October 2021 income statement for St Paul reflects that church giving year to date is positive at $805.10, but monthly giving has continued to decline over the past months creating reason for concern. It always amazes me as I walk in the church doors on Sunday and into the sanctuary how much work our volunteers do to make our church a wonderful place to worship.
I walk into the fellowship hall and kitchen area and see all of the many uses and meals this area has provided to our community over the years in meeting the basic needs of those who are less fortunate. The reality is the needs of our brothers and sisters will continue, and we will be given the opportunity to say yes to meeting those needs wherever that leads us.
The fact is that it takes money, time and resources to meet those basic needs of others. The truth is we must all continue to pray for guidance about how we are expected to give of our own money and time to make God’s priorities our priorities. It is through this act of selfless giving of our time and joyful giving of our money that we can see glimpses of God’s presence and feel the touch of the Holy Spirit in our lives.
On behalf of the church council please remember to give abundantly to God’s work at St. Paul so our ministries can continue to meet the basic needs of our brothers and sisters and to share the good news with those who so desperately need to hear it.