Givers, Giving and Gifts
Have you noticed an increase in the number of references to gifts lately? Of course, retailers think t[...]
Friends in Christ,
Thank you to the congregations who participated in the annual Stewardship Lab with the Minneapolis Area Synod on March 18th. It was an engaging morning centered on effective church communication strategies. This emphasis on storytelling is not a new thing in the Saint Paul Area Synod. For much of the last several years, there has been increased attention given to improving our ability to tell our stories. Who are we as leaders? Who are we as congregations? What is the work that Christ is calling us to in this place? Our stories give answers to these questions and more. Effective storytelling and communication can help to stimulate and improve our efforts in being better stewardship leaders.
I would offer one additional reflection regarding the Stewardship Lab and any other stewardship workshop. There is not one singular – or even a multitude – technical change that can completely solve the challenges of stewarding our resources or increasing the financial support for our congregations. We know this to be true about any number of the challenges facing the church in the 21st century. We have heard about the current cultural context ad nauseam. We have heard and are experiencing the challenges of shifting responsibilities and approaches. We are doing our best to be faithful and effective in what we do. The approaches and strategies we learn at workshops are simply meant to stimulate new experimental practices, to strengthen current practices, and to encourage us to take a risk with our leadership. I would encourage you to keep trying, to keep learning your stories, to keep taking risks in how you carry out your communication and ministry. We are equipped with a spirit of boldness.
The stories of God’s work in and through the people of our synod continue to inspire us to greater commitment to the Gospel and the Kingdom. It is a comfort to know that God’s mission in the world is accomplished through your faithfulness. Thank you for your faithful stewardship of all the blessings God has so abundantly given.
The Rev. Tom Jenkins