Where Does My Offering Go? Video from Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
“Blessed are you, O God, maker of all things. Through your goodness you have blessed us with these gifts: our selves, our time and our possessions. Use us, and what we have gathered, in feeding the world with your love, through the one who gave himself for us, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.”
Thus goes one of the offering prayers in the Evangelical Worship book. For me it lifts up some key insights about good Christian Stewardship:
1. Everything we have comes from God. We are caretakers of God’s stuff, which he has blessed us with to meet our needs and to allow us to partners with him in meeting the needs of others.
2. Stewardship is more than just what we do with money. Money is an important part of it, but it goes beyond how we use money to how we use our very lives in gratitude to God for His gracious love.
3. Good Stewardship is not about getting the most for the least, or finding the cheapest way to do things. God gave his very best to us, his only Son Jesus Christ, who willingly gave his very best, his life on the cross, for us.
Good Stewardship therefore doesn’t look for the “least” I can do, but rather the best I can do, in gratitude for God giving his best to us.
To the left are some links to resources to help you and your congregation develop an effective Stewardship ministry. In addition we have our Synod Stewardship Team, which focuses on increasing Mission Support to strengthen our partnerships with one another throughout the ELCA; and our Mission Interpreters who help tell the story of the lives that are changed through your financial gifts.
Click on the link below to read demographic reports compiled by the ELCA Churchwide Organization regarding the Southern Ohio Synod:
To order a demographic report for your zip code or county, click on the link below:
Census Report from the United States Government:
American Religious Identification Surveys:
The ELCA Stewardship webpage provides numerous resources in the following categories to help you with developing, promoting and maintaining a strong stewardship culture in your congregation. Those categories are:
- Care for Creation
- Spiritual Gifts
To access these resources go to: http://www.elca.org/Resources/Stewardship
“What are We 'Offering' at the Offering?” from Rethinking Stewardship conference at Luther Seminary:
Mission Support: The lifeblood of the ELCA article and study guide from Living Lutheran Oct 2018
Stewardship of Life Institute -- http://www.stewardshipoflife.
United Methodist Stewardship Foundation Resources -- http://www.umstewardship.org/lewis-center-resources
Mission Interpreter Ministry
We have a story to tell
Mission Interpreters tell the stories of how God is changing lives through our giving and we thank our members for their faithful giving that makes these stories possible!
These stories connect you, the members of the ELCA, to the mission and ministry of our Southern Ohio Synod and of our ELCA Churchwide organization. These stories are abundant! They tell how your mission support dollars and your designated giving are being used by God to make a difference in the world.
Very simply, Mission Interpretation is about telling and thanking!
If you do not have a Mission Interpreter in your congregation you should! Good candidates are people who are passionate about the work of the wider church, who are good communicators, and who use a computer and have email.
To learn more about the Mission Interpreter Ministry please contact Josselyn Bennett, Mission Interpreter Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consider joining our team!
Resources for telling the story
Resource document-Various sites -- Mission Interpreter Resources On The Web
None at this time.