What is Stewardship?

Stewardship is more than the giving of money in order to meet a church’s budget for the year. Stewardship is a theological statement of belief. It is a way of life based on a belief that we are all the beloved children of God. Therefore, we joyfully give of our time, talent, and treasure in order to participate in God’s Kingdom being lived here and now.

A practice of pledging models the values of our faith and demonstrates our commitment to deepening our relationship with God through active support of God’s ministry through the church. It provides an opportunity to discipline ourselves and educate our children. As a spiritual exercise, pledging allows us to reflect on the gifts God has given so that we all may use those gifts for the purpose of ministry, mission, faith formation, Christian fellowship, and worship of the church.

Dear Church Family:

For nearly two hundred years this church has served this entire community. It was when founded and continues today to be rooted in faith. It has stood tall, strong and unbending through good times and bad, a beacon of light which draws us in. It has provided security, opportunity to witness and hope for the future throughout the years. For this and for so many other reasons we as members of FPC are extremely grateful. We are, in fact, flourishing in gratitude.

We are now poised for rebirth. We have prevailed over months of fear, illness, death and uncertainty. We have welcomed a new pastor and his family and are actively seeking additional staff.

So, what does it take to build a vital church and maintain that status through the years? A building? A minister and staff? Members? Yes, all of these. But it also takes a sincere commitment from the staff and members to be active in their support of our church and all of its programs-spiritually, financially and with the gift of time. There is much that we have, learn from and enjoy, but there is much that we need.

The ministry teams are hard at work advancing the formation of our faith, mission opportunities, meaningful worship and fellowship. In order to have and experience all that we need and desire requires a commitment from all of us. We need to give freely and joyfully of our time and resources. A few years ago during stewardship season Kristina Carlson challenged us to increase our giving by a minimum of 5%. We can all afford to do this. I join Kristina in asking you to prayerfully consider this.

With the exception of a few years when I was away I have been a member of this church since the 1950’s. It is held deep in my heart. It is my home, my family. You have no idea how much it means to me to feel the love and support that we give to each other.

Let us remember our responsibility to support our beloved church with our time, talents and resources this stewardship season and throughout the coming years.

God bless and protect each of you and God bless and protect First Presbyterian Church.

Sally Hines

All are invited to discern how God calls you to serve, through the giving of your time, talents and treasures. Below are copies of this year’s stewardship materials for your consideration. Contact Frances Saralvarez at fsaralvarezfpc@gmail.com with any questions you may have and to let her know your interest in making a pledge.

If you would like to fill out your 2022 pledge card online, please click here!

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What does it mean to make a financial pledge?

What does it mean to make a financial pledge?

A pledge is nothing more than a promise, and in this case, a promise to give. Year after year, we are asked, after prayerful consideration, to resolve what we will give – gifts of time, talent, and treasure – to FPC Oxford.

Why is pledging important?

Why is pledging important?

Pledging is more than writing a check or clicking a box. Pledging is an essential spiritual exercise, allowing each of us to reflect on the gifts God has given us and to show our commitment to using those gifts for the purpose of ministry, mission, faith formation, Christian fellowship, and worship.

It also models to our children the important of making a tangible commitment to our church, and allowing a more fruitful connection to our church family and faith experience.

The church is essential for spiritual healing, for missional outreach, and for relational development. And to do these many things, we all must be willing to make a financial pledge to FPC Oxford.

Has the budget for 2022 been completed? And what is it?

Has the budget for 2022 been completed? And what is it?

The Finance Ministry Team is dutifully and prayerfully compiling a budget, which will be voted on by the Session and presented to the congregation at the annual congregational meeting. As in year’s past, we will be examining the areas that we feel are in need of additional resources and those areas from which resources may be shifted. Areas that we would like to foster continued development and nurture include our ministry of faith formation for children and youth, increased involvement among the membership in our ever-expanding mission and outreach efforts, and maintaining our standard of excellence in music ministry under the direction of our new music director, Creighton Holder.

To this end, we will be examining how additional personnel might assist in shaping these great endeavors.

Who should make a financial pledge to the church?

Who should make a financial pledge to the church?

Everyone! We are all members of this great congregation, and it takes the gifts of all to make it what it is. Young and old alike are encouraged to participate. What a wonderful thing it is to know that we are all contributors to the success of our church.

Is my pledge confidential & who do I contact for any questions?

Is my pledge confidential & who do I contact for any questions?

Yes. Pledges are entered by the office administrator and reviewed only by the two elders who serve as the financial secretary and treasurer. Please contact Frances at 234-1757 about any questions you may have.

How much should I pledge?

How much should I pledge?

There are many ways to decide how much to give. The most important thing is that we give in gratitude, remembering all that God has done and continues to do in our lives. As the Apostle Paul tells us, “Each of you must give as you have made up your min, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Remember, this is a biblical practice – dedicating the “first fruits” of our labor right off the top, rather than offering what remains after all other expenses are taken care of.

For many, proportionate giving – giving a set percentage of our income back to God for God’s work – can be very helpful in establishing an amount to give. If you currently do not pledge but contribute by putting money into the Sunday offering plate, you might consider pledging a percentage of that amount this year. If you’ve never tried proportionate giving before, why not start at 2% of your income? If you are already pledging, please consider increasing your pledge 10% for the coming year.

What if I need to change my pledge amount?

What if I need to change my pledge amount?

In order to change a pledge, you simply phone the church office and speak with the office administrator.

What are the different methods for submitting my pledge?

What are the different methods for submitting my pledge?

You may return the pledge card in the stamped pre-addressed envelope, place it in the offering plate or in the locked boxes in the narthex or church office, or you may enter your pledge on the website link.

If my current pledge is set up on bank draft or recurring credit card payment, do I still need to fill out a pledge card?

If my current pledge is set up on bank draft or recurring credit card payment, do I still need to fill out a pledge card?

Yes, please carefully consider what you are called to do in 2022 and complete a new pledge card so we will have an accurate record.

What else am I being asked to consider?

What else am I being asked to consider?

We would like every member to consider how to use their unique gifts and grow in their faith through meaningful involvement at FPC. The pledge card includes the opportunity for you to share your gifts with the various ministry opportunities.