Stewardship begins at baptism. In the baptismal waters, we begin a new life shaped by the cross and service to neighbor. But stewardship is also something that’s nurtured – through a life-long journey in Christian community. Society emphasizes a self-centered accumulation of our resources. Congregations call us into a deeper sense of gratitude, trust, generosity.
The Stewardship Committee of the Minneapolis Area Synod seeks to accompany congregations as they envision a broader, more faithful way of thinking about stewardship and to support congregations in this good, but challenging work.
“No congregation would intentionally avoid talking about important aspects of the Christian life like prayer, Bible reading, and Christian service. We need to stop avoiding talking about money, the aspect of the Christian life that Jesus talked about the most.” — Chick Lane in “Embracing Stewardship”
“It is important for a congregation to talk about money in worship, especially when you aren’t asking for any.” — Chick Lane in “Embracing Stewardship”
“Not only does Scripture drive the preacher to talk about money, so too does the life situation of most worshipers.” — Chick Lane in “Embracing Stewardship”
In addition to the ministry of forming faithful and generous disciples, congregations are also called to address the real resource needs of healthy faith communities. Recognizing that the first step in any stewardship conversation is the mission conversation, we seek to be clear about this starting point. Before we ask the question “How are we going to pay for this,” we should ask, “What is God calling us to do in this place?”
People not yet in the church are more likely to be drawn to a community of faith engaged in the world than they are to meeting the requirements of the bills. People, especially those now called “millennials,” are less likely to give to institutions and more to causes to which they feel connected. They want to see the impact of their generosity.
Still, congregations have bills to pay. In addition to theological perspective, the synod offers practical resources on such things as online giving, narrative budgets, estate planning, and capital campaigns.
God calls the baptized to share their whole lives in love for the neighbor. In thanksgiving for the gift of Jesus Christ, we respond to the abundance of God’s grace by expressing our gratitude in every aspect of our lives.
2016 Stewardship Lab videos
Complete the 2017 Plan for Mission Support