Despite stewardship being an important part of our discipleship, it is an area we often find uncomfortable to address in church, especially money wealth and possessions. We only need to look at our Bibles to know that we should embrace this area of our faith and strive for improvement.
The sheer number of Bible references (2350 to be precise) to money, wealth and possessions tell us this is of importance to God. As a result, we should be striving to help those who attend our churches grow and develop a generous faith. Talking about money is perfectly acceptable in our churches. Stewardship is about faith development and growing disciples; it is about being open to God’s Will in our parishes and enabling great things within our parishes and across our Diocese.
There are manageable steps to be taken by churches and plenty of resources available to enable this progression to occur in all parishes. The aim is to enable giving, generosity and money to be talked about openly and effectively in our parishes and for stewardship to be a routine part of parish life.
The Stewardship Adviser is available to support parishes in encouraging Christian giving through sound stewardship practices. Support includes resourcing, facilitating PCC discussions, supporting stewardship programmes in parishes and speaking at Sunday services.
The Generosity Week
We believe in a generous God, a God who gave us everything. Giving and generosity are inextricably linked with the living out of our Christian faith.
As a church we need to encourage generosity whenever we can, and to help parishes focus on generous giving, the National Giving Team and colleagues in other Dioceses have created The Generosity Week: Eight days of service and worship materials for churches to use whatever the time of the year to encourage people to live generously.
These materials include:
- 8 Morning Prayer services
- Traditional Eucharist and Service of the Word services for 2 Sundays, one focussing on generosity and one on gratitude
- 2 sessions of Small Group material
- 8 audio reflections exploring passages in the Bible – for individual or group use
- Marketing and social media to support the material
May we encourage you to participate in a Generosity Week in your church. Set aside eight days to consider the generosity of God and our gratitude to Him. There is plenty of material here to support worship, preaching, teaching and prayer, providing an opportunity to consider our response to God’s gracious gifts.