“Generosity is the virtue of giving good things to others freely and abundantly. It is a learned character trait that involves attitude and action entailing both the inclination and actual practice of giving liberally. It is not a haphazard behavior but a basic orientation to life. What generosity gives can vary: money, possessions, time, attention, aid, encouragement, and more but it always intends to enhance the true wellbeing of the receiver. Like all virtues, generosity is in people’s genuine enlightened self-interest to learn and practice.” Definition from Christian Smith, The Generosity Project, Notre Dame
Learning opportunities are available for those interested in building a stronger financial foundation for sustainable ministry.
Also, sign up for the Generosity Forward e-newsletter HERE to learn about new ideas, best practices, and training opportunities around congregational fundraising.
Pastors & Paychecks: The Inner Work of our Relationship with Money. A Reflection with Pastors.
July 28, 2021, 3:00 pm
Joaquin Labour and Randy Garrett of the Pension Boards will join Andrew Warner for a conversation with pastors about our own relationship with money: what works, what does, and how to restore balance to our financial lives. REGISTER
Annual Campaigns 101. An Introduction to Stewardship for Pastors and Lay Leaders.
Aug 23, 2021, 5:30 pm
Designed for pastors and lay leaders planning an annual pledge campaign, we will explore ways to create an effective campaign. We will reflect on core purpose of a campaign, discuss practical steps leaders can take, and explore creative ideas to design a campaign uniquely suited to your congregation. Join this webinar to develop and strengthen plans for a successful fall campaign. REGISTER
Don’t Beg – Rethinking the Stewardship Sermon. A Conversation with Pastors
Oct 6, 2021, 4:00 pm
A Bible Study for pastors as we think through options for sermons on Stewardship for a fall pledge campaign. We will be guided by Henri Nouwen’s observation, “Fundraising is precisely the opposite of begging. Rather, we are declaring, ‘We have a vision that is amazing and exciting.’” REGISTER
Cultivating Generous Congregations Seminar
Webinar in 6 sessions: Watch for future dates
|Stewardship in any season can be stressful for pastors. It can feel awkward – “I’m asking people to pay me!” It can feel unspiritual – “Jesus chased the money changers out of the temple!” The Cultivating Generous Congregations Seminar for pastors and lay leaders offers an opportunity to explore faithful, practical, and tested ways for promoting generosity in our congregations. We will draw on current research, seek guidance from the wisdom of scripture, and discuss the best practices in church-based fundraising.
This seminar will help pastors and leaders engage generosity as a spiritual practice, and will improve the “bottom line” of your congregation – mission and ministry. Six online sessions run on Wednesdays at 5:30-7:00 pm, from May 19th through June 23rd, and will be taught by the Rev. Andrew Warner, Wisconsin Conference Director of Development and the Rev. Andy DeBraber, Generosity Officer of the national setting.
Between class sessions, Andy and Andrew will provide materials to help you analyze the culture of your own congregation and learn how to create change. By the end of the seminar, pastors and leaders will be equipped to lead effective fundraising and you will have a strategy to guide your success moving forward.
Be sure to recruit at least a team of two from your congregation for this program. The cost is $150/per person (2 recommended from each church). The Wisconsin Conference will cover $100/participant if requested. Email Andrew Warner to request. Register here
What’s Next: Best Practices for Financial Sustainability – An Orientation for Lay Leaders
Watch for future dates
This webinar reviews basic aspects of the treasurer, financial secretary, and stewardship chair roles. Please complete the Congregational Economic Evaluation (CEE) Survey from CARDD before the webinar. The CEE Survey will inform our conversation. We focus on how to organize and lead an effective year-around practice of storytelling (or testimonials) related to generosity, effective ways to record and thank donors for their gifts, and creating a “financial dashboard” to help fellow board members understand the finances of the congregation. Register here