What is the purpose of collecting stewardship pledges?
Financial giving is an act of faith, and bringing your pledge to church and placing it before God on the High Altar is an act of worship. The annual stewardship pledging efforts take place in the Fall because Stewardship pledges also provide the means for the church to plan for the coming year of ministries and worship activities that accomplish, on a daily basis, the work of Christ in the world. Specifically, the stewardship pledging effort recurs annually to provide an expectation of contributions in the coming year on which to plan for: worship services, Christian formation programs for both children and adults, operations and maintenance of the facility, Clergy and staff salaries, mission and outreach, music programs, pastoral care, etc. We ask that you consider setting aside a portion of your “first fruits” to support the daily life and work of the Church of the Good Shepherd.
I want to make a pledge. How much is appropriate?
The amount of your pledge is entirely up to you, knowing that God asks only that we give a portion of the bounty he has provided. The biblical standard of giving is the tithe, which also means 10% of income. If you do not yet feel you can give at that level, consider beginning at a lower percentage and work your way up. The table below may help you determine what amount might be right for you. Remembering that we are stewards and not actually owners of our resources is a helpful mindset, as well as a grateful heart, and faithful understanding that God returns abundantly to those who give. This decision is a spiritual act, so it is recommended that you start by praying, and asking God to help you decide at what level you are able to give.
How can I make a pledge?
You can make a pledge to the Church of the Good Shepherd in several different ways. You can attend the annual Stewardship Sunday in the fall and place your pledge before God on the High Altar as an act of worship. If you are unable to attend one of the worship services on Stewardship Sunday, you can mail your pledge card or bring it by the Church Office. Pledge cards are always available in the Church Office, or you can download a Pledge Card or make a pledge online by clicking on the Online Pledging tab. You can also make a pledge by simply calling the church office at 361-882-1735.
If you are mailing your pledge, please send it to:
The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd
700 S. Upper Broadway
Corpus Christi, Texas 78401-3521
What methods of payment does the church accept?
Pledge payments can be made in the form of cash, check, automatic debit transactions, or stock gifts. Many parishioners find it convenient to make scheduled payments through online banking. Many find the regular discipline of bringing their pledge payments to church every week a meaningful part of worship, placing their gifts in the offertory plate to be presented to God at the altar. Pledge Payments made in cash must be placed in an envelope with your name on it, so it can be recorded as your pledge payment.
Is it enough for me to donate money in the collection plate, rather than making a Stewardship Pledge?
Donations through the collection plate are one way to give and are certainly welcome. The amount of these donations, however, varies significantly from week to week, and does not provide the predictability needed to plan for the mission and ministries of the church. Plate offerings only represent about 2% of our annual revenue. Annual Stewardship Pledges provide a solid basis for the church to plan for the coming year. In order for cash contributions to be included on your year-end Statement of Giving, they must be placed in an envelope with your name on it.
Can I specify exactly how I want my pledge to be used?
Annual Stewardship Pledges are unrestricted donations that are used to fund the mission and ministries of the Church of the Good Shepherd. The budget is set each year by the Finance Committee and approved by the Vestry (church members who are elected by the parish as their representatives). This approach allows the leadership of the church to ensure that all of the mission and ministries of the church receive support each year. However, in addition to annual pledges, special gifts for specific projects, purposes and missions are always greatly appreciated, and make it possible to take these ministries even further.
What if I make a pledge, but later find that I cannot meet my obligation?
A pledge is an estimate to facilitate church planning and is not a legal obligation. If you experience financial or other difficulties (such as job loss, serious illness, or other unexpected events) and find that you are not able to fulfill your pledge, we ask that you notify the Church Office of the change.
Where does the money go?
The leadership of The Church of the Good Shepherd is committed to being good stewards of your financial contributions. Careful consideration goes into the allocation of funds to further the mission and ministries of the church: worship services, Christian formation programs for both children and adults, operations and maintenance of the facility, clergy and staff salaries, mission and outreach, music programs, pastoral care, etc.
How much money does the church give to Mission and Outreach?
Mission and Outreach Funds come from a variety of sources; a portion comes from Stewardship Pledges. Mission and Outreach is also funded through the Church Endowment Fund and through Special Gifts to designated outreach projects and the Rector’s Discretionary Fund. It is important to note that your Stewardship dollars provide the platform for outreach opportunities, many of which would not be possible without our support.