The Ethics of Giving: The Invisible Benefits of an Institution

By Greg Funderburk, Minister for Pastoral Care

All over the world there are good people who don’t give generously to their local places of worship. It’s a common word for people of good will to say that they want their energies and their resources to go to the truly needy, not a big organization which requires a myriad of administration and property costs. One of the things this view fails to uncover is that whenever the church opens its doors and its congregation gathers in a particular time and space, an invisible safety net of strong connections is being woven among those present. 

Think about the role of this church in your own life. How many times have you enjoyed good conversation over a meal, felt the prayer support of fellow congregants, been edified by dialogue in a small group, experienced fellowship or a sense of transcendence in a special worship service, seen your kids thrive in offerings of the Family Ministry, or felt the wholesomeness of serving in one of the church’s mission efforts?

Social science studies have shown that regular church attendance and moments like these, over time, produce happier, healthier people who are, because of increased social reserves and the bonds of connections, more equipped to handle, not only day to day life, but life’s most challenging trials.

This February, in what we call our Stewardship Campaign, we’re seeking to elicit commitments from each other by which we not only ensure we can do all the mission and ministry work envisioned in our church’s plans as reflected in our recently adopted 2020 budget, but also to express our recognition and gratitude for this social fabric woven among us and from which we all receive benefit. As you consider your commitment, consider not only the value of this institution in your life, but the virtue of investing in it for others.

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