Paul L. Larsen testifies how about how a program called Quill elped their people in their congregation to make significant increases in their giving for mission and ministry at a time of economic stress.
Quill - The Personal Demonstration Stewardship Program
Paul Larsen testifies to a program used at Christ the King which had signficiant success. The results were 17% in increased giving for 2008 and pledged for 2009.
The program entails finding a group of good stewards who are willing to hand write a personal letter to 10 or more people of their choosing. In the letter they share the joy they find in giving, tell what they plan to give per week and invite the recipient to join them in growing in giving.
The Quill program wants you to find people who will double their gifts and invite others to do the same. It worked fine for us to use generous givers who were willing to grow in their giving and willing to share the amount of their gifts.
Paul invited very generous givers to write the letter. Most were giving a tithe and beyond. They were invited to grow in their giving and share what they planned to give per week for the next year.
Paul wrote a "wrote a mass mailing letter sharing the joy I find in giving and what my wife and I planned to give for the next year. I signed each of the 900 letters and wrote a personal note on most of them. While some of the people I invited to write letters declined and others were hesitant about sharing what they gave I did recruit about 40 letter writers. They each wrote 10 or more personal letters to people of their own choosing in the congregation.
"Within the congregation there were some people who were put off by people sharing what they give in a talk during worship or in a personal letter, there were also people who enthusiastically embraced the idea. People certainly responded well with their increased pledges."
More information about the program are found on the web site. The site states "tThe basic Spiritual Values and Principles of Quill re states basic Spiritual Values and Principles are inherent in the Gospels, Acts and Pauline Letters.
"1. Giving and stewardship of one's possessions are basic to salvation and giving generously is living one's faith. (17 of Jesus' 38 parables are about possessions and giving.)
2. Do not hide what you do for God, but demonstrate your good works (giving) to others to encourage their spiritual growth. ("Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:14-16)
3. Love your peers enough to risk their possible discomfort with your witness to your good giving.
("If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me" Luke 9:23)
You can find out more about the program by clicking on Quill
Paul L. Larsen is Senior Pastor at Christ the King Lutheran Church, New Brighton, MN.
Image credit: © Ignacio García Losa (ignaciogarcialosa.com) via Flickr. Used by permission.