The ‘M’ word

We’re having a session with clergy tomorrow looking at the SEC’s plan to have a Year of Stewardship.  Two things most clergy dread, in my experience.  Not the Sunday Sermon – nor difficult pastoral situations, however distressing they may be.  At least we feel that’s what we were ordained to do.  No – it’s the Annual Meeting or a Stewardship Campaign because in each case you’re in the stocks and fair game for anything anybody wants to throw at you!  Stewardship Programmes come in many shapes and forms – at heart, it’s about encouraging people to see financial commitment as an expression of their faith commitment and thanksgiving for what they have received.  Our finances are not disastrously bad – but they are not all that good either.  I hear people talking about fundraising and how much it costs to run the church – not so much about giving and what it might take to enable the church to engage seriously in mission.  There is a difference!