Stimulate Your Church, too ! ! !
- Author: Jim Pape is now retired but was formerly on the Stewardship staff of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod.
- Updated: 04/05/2008
- Copyright: Jim Pape
Looking for a way to encourage giving? Stimulate the economy and also you parish by sending a letter encouraging people to use their 2008 tax rebate as an opportunity to stimulate the well being of the church.
A Suggested Letter by firstname.lastname@example.org
Stimulate Your Church, too ! ! !
Dear Members of ____________ :
More than likely you heard the news about the Congress and the
President creating a bill that will provide tax rebates.
Tax rebates will go to 137 million people. A rebate of up to $600 will go to single filers making less than $75,000.
Couples making less than $150,000 would receive rebates of up to
$1,200. In addition, parents would receive $300 rebates per child.
Tax filers who do not owe income taxes but have at least $3,000 in income would get a $300 rebate.
The IRS will start sending out checks in early May, said Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson.
"Payments will be largely completed this summer, putting cash in the
hands of millions of Americans at a time when our economy is
experiencing slower growth," Paulson said in a statement.
This means a majority of folks will be receiving a "freebie" of cash
in the mail pretty soon. What will you do with the extra money?
Many will probably use a portion of it to pay down any debt . . . i.e.
credit cards, bills, equity loans, student loans and/or mortgage
balance. And, many will no doubt use a portion of it to treat
themselves to a big screen TV, furniture, home repair, vacation money,
savings, future investments, Roth-IRA, mutual fund, etc.
This is really going to be a test of stewardship for all of us. The
Lord has blessed us with extra income. Now, how are we really going
to use it? May you also consider giving a portion of the "freebie"
to the Lord.
In addition to the aforementioned possibilities, we would ask you to
consider using a portion of your rebate check as an offering to the
Lord. The Old Testament standard was 10% of income (a tithe); however, the New Testament response is based on a Gospel response, a love response. Please consider an offering response of 2%, 5%, 10%, or even 15% plus.
St. Paul writes: >i>Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to
make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times,
having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. II
The rebate offering received will be disbursed as:
_____% World Mission
_____% Local Food Bank
_____% to the Mission and Ministry of our congregation.
An envelope is provided for your convenience. And, thank-you for your prayerful consideration of this rebate gift.
Your Stewardshp Committee
There is a story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about a bishop in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who is asking churchgoers in southeastern Wisconsin to consider donating a portion of their economic stimulus checks.
To read that story go to www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=735804 He hopes checks stimulate donations: Bishop asks churchgoers to give 10% of rebate