FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Annual pledges to St. Paul’s support our church’s day to day operations and its many ministries. All pledges are greatly appreciated to beneficial. Scroll down for answers to some frequently asked questions about pledging, or you may access our Online Pledge Card.
• Why are annual pledges important?
• What is the annual operating budget?
• What is the goal of the annual giving campaign?
• What is a pledge?
• How do I decide how much to pledge?
• What does it mean to give proportionately?
• Who can pledge?
• Are there giving guides?
• How do I make a pledge?
• Is my pledge confidential?
• When should I return my annual pledge card?
• How can I pay my annual pledge?
• Do I have to pay when I pledge? Can I pay in installments?
• Why should I pledge when I regularly put money in the offering plate?
• I’m not sure what I can afford this year. How can I pledge?
• Can I change my pledge?
• If I have questions about my pledge, whom do I contact?
Why are annual pledges important?
Annual pledges fund the church’s operation and support all that the Church does in its many ministries. Your annual pledge is essential if we are to sustain our existing ministries and begin to address our goals for the future.
The vestry formulates and approves the annual operating budget based on written pledges. Difficult decisions are required each year because needs always exceed pledges. Pledging is critically important because the vestry is committed to a balanced budget.
Planning responsibly is an important part of stewardship at St. Paul’s. In order to allow the vestry to prepare a realistic budget for the upcoming year, please make your 2013 pledge on or before November 11, 2012.
The parish’s budget is the very tangible way we give witness to our plans to continue Christ’s ministry in the world through St. Paul’s Memorial Church. The budget is neither arbitrary nor inflated. It is carefully designed to allow the parish to practice responsible stewardship. For the year 2012, the St. Paul’s budget is $848,205 with 75% coming from pledges; 6% coming from non-pledge offerings and seasonal gifts; and 19% coming from our endowment, the Diocese, and rental income.
- Increase the total number of pledges in 2013 by 13% from 2012 for a total 300 pledges (versus 266 in 2012).
- Increase the total amount of money pledged in 2013 by 10% for a total of $638,000 (versus $580,000 in 2012).
A pledge is a commitment to give a certain amount of money to St. Paul’s during 2013. Most people fulfill their pledges in installments, each week or month throughout the year.
Your decision is as personal as your prayer and only you can know what’s right for you – at this stage in your journey, in your current financial circumstances. If you've never pledged, you may want to begin by pledging something and making it part of your weekly spiritual practice. Notice along the way how your giving is influencing your life and your relationship with the St. Paul’s community.
Proportional giving is based on the premise that the first fruits are given to enable God’s ministries in our midst through generous sharing all of the gifts that God has so freely given to each of us. It refers to a conscious effort to determine an appropriate level of giving by giving in proportion to your annual household income. The biblical benchmark for giving is the tithe, 10 % of household income.
There are many ways to give and to serve Christ and His Church. You might want to begin at two percent, moving your gift upward annually, as you are able. If you have given proportionally in the past, we respectfully ask that you consider pledging 10% more than you did last year. If everyone were to increase their pledge by 10% in 2013, St. Paul’s would have an additional $60,000 to support new programs and ministries.
Families and finances are organized in different ways. Anyone, including children, who desires to pledge individually can do so, or you may make a single pledge as a couple or family.
Parishioners are invited to offer their personal financial commitments by putting pledge cards in the offering plate on Sundays between October 7th – November 11th. Pledge cards are available at St. Paul’s. Pledges may also be submitted by going to the St. Paul’s web site and pledging online. We request that pledges be submitted by November 11, 2012 in order to allow the vestry to prepare a realistic budget.
Yes, pledges are confidential. Pledges, whether received via mail, in the offering plate, or online, are handled by Debbie Little, St. Paul’s financial secretary. Volunteers and other staff do not see individual pledges. In order to follow up on outstanding pledge commitments, volunteers (other parishioners) may be advised as to whether a pledge has been received, but pledge amounts are not shared.
When should I return my annual pledge card?
In order to allow the vestry to prepare a realistic budget for the upcoming year, please make your 2011 pledge on or before November 7, 2011.
How can I pay my annual pledge?
There are several ways to pay your pledge. You may pay by cash or check, using weekly pledge payment envelopes, or use Electronic Funds Transfer to have a set amount transferred from your account on a regular basis. You may also make payments with stock.
You may pay your pledge when you make it or you may pay in installments. The pledge commitment is for January through December 2013. Each quarter, you will receive a statement summarizing your gifts for the year. St. Paul’s is dependent upon pledges to meet the parish’s monthly financial obligations. Therefore, staying current allows St. Paul’s to respond to its financial obligations in the same spirit that we respond to all other needs.
Non-pledge funds collected each week help support the ongoing life of the parish. However, pledges are very important because they enable us to plan responsibly and to establish an operating budget for the parish for the coming year.
A pledge can be adjusted throughout the year if your circumstances change. We suggest that you pledge responsibly, based on your estimate of the year's income. A pledge can be increased, if your circumstances change.
Can I change my pledge?
If I have questions about my pledge, whom do I contact?
Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 October 2012 11:35