October 2019 Newsletter

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Learn Vital Practices for Church Giving at Generosity NEXT

Spirited Generosity: Offering Vitality in the 21st Century is the topic for Generosity NEXT 2019, November 20-21, 2019. Receiving offerings has been an ongoing part of the church’s story, beginning with the earliest scripture texts. Generosity NEXT will explore the history and theology of the offering, its spiritual significance, and how faith communities can continue to make congregational giving a vital practice in 21st-century culture.

  • Dr. L. Edward Phillips, Associate Professor of Worship and Liturgical Theology at Candler School of Theology, will present an historical and theological review of the offering in Judeo/Christian culture.
  • Melvin Amerson, Stewardship Consultant for the Texas Methodist Foundation, will give a presentation about the offering as an act of worship, discipleship, and mission.
  • Robert Hay Jr., Senior Ministry Relations Officer, Southeast for the Presbyterian Foundation, will share about the cultural influences on the offering including technology, generational differences, and the place of church in society.
  • Stewardship and fundraising consultant Lori Guenther Reesor will share a presentation on best practices for the offering and how to make the offering a meaningful moment when faith communities gather.

Participate in Generosity NEXT onsite in Atlanta, Georgia; via live streaming; or at a live streaming site. Register by October 31 before the late registration fee.

Learn More and Register

November Author Chat Features Growing Generous Souls

Tired of racing from one activity to another and from one church program to the next? Growing Generous Souls focuses on being stewards rather than compulsive doing and consuming, and connects our faith life with daily practice. Author Betsy Schwarzentraub gives an overview of the book, including how to use it in group studies throughout the year. Paired with its website, the book offers reflection questions and multiple resources to quit trying to “push stewardship” and instead grow ourselves and others as more generous souls.

Join Betsy -Friday, November 8, 2:00 pm Eastern time, 1:00 pm Central time, Noon Mountain time, 11:00 am Pacific time to learn more about Growing Generous Stewards.

Get the Author Chat Link

New Study Looks at How Churches Receive, Manage, and Spend Resources

The Lake Institute on Faith & Giving just released the National Study of Congregations’ Economic Practices Executive Report. The NSCEP is the largest and most comprehensive, nationally-representative study of US congregations’ finances in more than a generation. It reveals a detailed picture of the nation’s more than 300,000 congregations, providing new insight into how congregations receive, manage, and spend money. A few highlights include:

  • Although more than half of all congregations report growth in size and revenue, 42% of congregations are declining or remaining flat in both size and revenue.
  • Although Christian churches make up the vast majority of US congregations, the NSCEP finds that the houses of worship of other major religious traditions such as Judiaism, Islam, and Hinduism, when taken together, show significant growth in participation and revenue, indicating a growth of America’s religious pluralism.
  • On average, congregations spend almost half of their annual budgets on staff and another quarter on facilities. Individual congregations’ budgets range from a few thousand dollars to several million dollars.

Get the Executive Report

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