Stewardship at Maple Grove United, 2018/19

church pews and stained glass windows

December 9, 2018
Seconds for Stewardship
Let us remember the gifts we have received from God, and in our turn become God’s giving hands in this world.

While our 2019 Stewardship campaign is officially closed, we still have only about half the Commitment cards collected compared to last year.  For those of you who have made a pledge, we thank you!  For those of you who have not yet made a pledge, please fill out a Commitment card and deposit it into the sealed box in the back foyer of the Church.  Extra commitment cards can be found in the back of the pews or scattered around the Church.

Thank you from The Stewardship Committee!

***

Stewardship – November 18, 2018

Our 2019 Stewardship campaign is coming to a close!
“Our Generosity,” says the United Church, “is our response to God’s vast generosity in our own lives. It is a way to contribute to God’s mission in our world.
It is how we make a positive difference in our own community through the mission of our congregation and beyond through the Mission and Service Fund.”
When we think about giving our time, talent and treasure, we can consider a number of questions:
  • What is God’s mission for us in our daily life?
  • What is our mission in our community? How do we model compassion, provide community and offer hope? How do we serve God’s mission in the wider world?
Paul reminds us that we are to give thanks always for the grace of God given us in Christ Jesus (1 Cor. 1:4). These thanks are made tangible through our gifts. Please consider this when filling out your commitment card with generous pledges of your time, talents and treasure for 2019. 
Please get in your commitment card today! We have so far received only about half the commitment cards expected. Remember, the Church needs you!
Thank you from The Stewardship Committee
*******

A Story of Stewardship
I grew up in a home where giving to one’s church was the norm. My parents would sit and lay all of the money for that payday on the kitchen table.  The bills would then be laid next to the money. The very first thing my parents would do was to take their money for church, place it in an envelope and seal the envelope.  It was never re-opened.  My parents did not open the envelope when my brother needed eye surgery, three kids needed braces, cars needed repairs or Christmas was coming. The concept of pay God first and all other gifts will be given unto you, was the value of my childhood family

When my husband and I entered into a marriage twenty five years ago, we too took that same approach. We give weekly and are on PAR. We have given to the church we have attended in all four provinces of which we have lived. We believe it is important for our children to know that we value our community of faith in our time (various committee work), talent (choir for me and fertilizer announcements for my husband) but mostly, we truly value giving of our income to this church at both the local and national levels.

Why am I on PAR?  Why do I give?  I do so for the greater good.  I do so for those people in need and I do so as this Christian church, and the freedom to worship as we choose, is important to me.   A sermon that I once heard has always stayed with me and one might say that it encompasses everything that I believe about giving of one’s time, talent and treasure.  This sermon was entitled ‘If every church member were just like me, what kind of church would my church be’. 

I give because I believe in my Christian faith, my church and the values we share.  Please give prayful consideration to this phrase, “if every church member gave of their time, talent and treasure just like me, what kind of church would Maple Grove United Church be”.

***

Dear Members and Friends of Maple Grove:

It is that time of year again –  STEWARDSHIP!  This year our theme is “Loving Our Neighbours” and we will have a number of events around that theme.  As we did last year, we are trying to save on postage, so we are emailing out the Stewardship package to everyone with an email address.  We will also have a few extra printed copies in the back lobby of the church for those members not on our emailing list.  Please look through the documents attached, namely:

  • Our Stewardship Letter that introduces the program for 2019
  • Our MGUC Narrative Budget – NEW with Harry’s input for the first time!
  • Our Commitment Card for 2019, which we would ask that you either print out and put in the locked box in the back lobby of the church, or use one of the cards that can be found in the back of the pews.

Payments can be made by PAR, cheque, cash or securities.  Consider giving proportionally, but please do consider giving.  Maple Grove needs you!

Best Regards,

C.S.
Stewardship Committee

Commitment Card

Stewardship Letter:

Dear Members and Friends of Maple Grove United Church:

Last year we struggled to meet our Stewardship goals until the end of the year when a final push helped us over the finish line. As a result we achieved our goals, allowing us to meet our funding needs both within the Church and our community. We are so grateful to all members of the congregation for their support last year in contributing over $280,000 of donations.

“For you know the generous act of our Sovereign, Jesus Christ, who though he was rich became poor for our sake, so that by his poverty we might become rich.” (II Corinthians 8:9).

God is the provider of an abundance of resources for our ministry and mission here at Maple Grove United. Our congregation is rich in faith, service, love, talent, life experience, care for one another, and financial capabilities. Communities of faith have many assets, including financial ones, with which to carry out their mission. We in Canada, and in Oakville area have been blessed with an abundance of wealth. How does our community offer thanks for God’s generosity and respond to God’s generosity by serving others?

Did you know that our budget is raised entirely from folks in the pews? We do not expect donors to have an equal ability to give. We have about 120 families who contribute regularly to our financial picture. If they gave their “equal share”, it would amount to about $2,400 per family. If you are able to reach that mark, please do. For some, that is an unattainable stretch. For others, this is useful information in forming a giving strategy. See also see the STEP chart on the next page indicating the profile of our donations for last year.

Join us over the coming weeks as we hear how we are called in our worship and learning as Christians. We will share stories about why we give; how our generosity makes a difference here at Maple Grove; how we affect the community around us; and how, through the Mission & Service of the United Church, we respond to this call nationally and globally – all components of how we sing thanksgiving to help heal God’s World!

Between now and Advent, we encourage you and all members of your family to meditate on how YOU would like to sing thanksgiving, to consider your own reasons for giving your time, talent and treasure and how you will respond to this call. We hope this will be an opportunity to reflect on the blessings in your life and how you can live out your own response. In addition, an organization like Maple Grove takes many dedicated volunteers to

help the organization run smoothly. We are also in great need of time and talent from members of the congregation to fill a number of roles in the church.

We would ask that you consider filling out a copy of the Commitment Card that is attached, or in the back of the pews, to pledge your donations for 2019. Your commitment is a way of expressing your faith and joyfully acting upon it. Payments can be made by PAR (Pre-Authorized Remittance), cheque, cash, or securities. Consider giving proportionally, but please do consider giving. Maple Grove needs you!

Sincerely,

Cameron Serles, Stewardship Committee

Please Fill out your 2019 Commitment Card Today (see below, or find in the back of the pews) and deposit in the Stewardship box at the Church, or leave it with Bobbi-Jo in the Church office.

STEP Chart MGUC Givings 2017/18

Commitment Card for MGUC 2018/19

Commitment Card 

Click on the image below, then print it and fill it out and hand it in at church or pick up a Commitment Card at church

Commitment Card for MGUC 2018/19

Maple Grove United Church Narrative Budget 2018/2019

People of Christian faith and those who are curious about it are drawn into connection with God through Jesus. Believing “I too am a beloved child of God” frames how such people understand themselves. Some years ago a church insider claimed: “Stewardship is everything one does after one says, ‘I believe’.” It’s about seeking to honour our part of our covenant relationship with the God who richly blesses us, guides us, and upholds. It is expressed through lives lived with gratitude and generosity. At Maple Grove United your offerings sustain five areas of ministry.

1. Ministry of Christian Worship and Spiritual Growth

We offer regular times to worship:

Sunday 9.00 am:

  • a quiet, compact opportunity to reflect on God’s Word and pray.
  • Monthly communion
  • A Memory service on Advent 1 toassist folk who have experienced loss to be resilient through the Christmas season
  • Weekly gathering at Tim Horton’s (‘St. Timothy’s) following worship

Sunday 10.30 am:

  • Praise through music presented by our three vocal choirs, hand bell choir, and instrumentalists
  • Reflection on the Word through time with the children and preaching
  • Prayer
  • Community time after worship
  • Monthly communion

Tuesday 7.00 pm

• Centering Prayer (silent prayer, reflection on a spiritual resource and mutual caring)

1st Saturday of the Month (several times a year)
• Messy Church for families in church

and community created to meet the spiritual needs of young children and families (includes activities, worship and dinner)

Thursday mornings (anytime between 6 and 10.00 am) Prayer Team

  • Reflect with the help of ameditation and prayer
  • Pray wherever you are formembers on a prayer cycle and for those in need

Community Worship

• Hospital, seniors’ residences, long term care facilities, Town Square

As needed

  • Funerals, weddings, baptisms, interfaith worship, prayer services
  • Worship marking holy days. (e.g. Ash Wednesday, Christmas Eve)

Your generous donations maintain this ministry including

2. Ministry of Christian Development and Faith Formation

Through Christian nurture, each of us grows in our knowledge of what it means to be a people of God in our world. With the help of dedicated personnel and volunteers we provide education for the children and confirmation and active weekly programming for youth. Adult study and reflection happen in many different ways through such programs as Supper for the Soul, special bible study groups, Centering Prayer and Meditation. A couple of years ago, a visioning team adopted the following vision statement for Christian Education (ages 0-18): “MGUC Christian Education envisions a community of learners where all are invited to grow and to explore Christian faith in action.”

Your stewardship dollars fund such items as:

Ministry and music personnel

Provision/maintenance of instruments, technical resources

Guest musicians (vocal and instrumental)

Pulpit supply

Provision and maintenance of worship and communion supplies, Bibles, hymn books

Choirs (children’s, Chancel Choir, Ladies Hand Bell Choir)

Ministry personnel leadership

Youth groups

Inquiring Minds Events

Confirmation

Occasional Faith and Film Group

Church school and curriculum

Centering Prayer

Bible Study

Interfaith Peace Camp

Meditation

Interfaith Study Groups

3. Ministry of Pastoral Care and Spiritual Nurture

We offer ongoing care and support to all members and friends of our congregation. The Caring Team is there for you in times of crisis. We reach out and keep in touch with members who are housebound, or who no longer can come to church. Your generous gifts enable:

4. Ministry of Mission, Service and Outreach

Our mission includes a strong direction to reach out and serve others beyond our doors. We have a strong Outreach committee that focuses energy at three levels of activity – local, national and international.
Our church has a strong ministry of outreach with its commitment to the Mission and Service fund of the United Church of Canada and we are strong supporters in this Region.

We also support the work of the church through our forthcoming Regional Council assessments. This includes the work of Regional Staff covering congregations from West Mississauga to Niagara area and Brant/Haldimand Counties.
Areas of this ministry works include:

5. Ministry of Place and Sacred Space

The physical building we are blessed with includes not only our sanctuary, gym and meeting rooms but we also own the Manse on the property. Maintaining these buildings is vital in allowing us to live out our mission.
Our congregation understands the importance of providing a safe, friendly and accessible communal space for us and others. Dozens of groups use our facility over the weeks and months of the year. These include: Western Heights Montessori Academy and Daycare, Little Kickers, Fourth Trafalgar Scouts, community yoga and volleyball.

This ministry includes support for :

Some of our spiritual and biblical foundations can be found by checking out:

Hospital visits and services

Services in long term care homes

Marriage preparation

Prayer Shawl group

Toonie lunches

Freezer foods

New members welcome

Prayer group

Men’s breakfast group

Pastoral phone calls, visits

Photo directory, E-news, website

Weekly prayer letters

Membership and Caring Team

Sunday greeters, coffee for fellowship

Outreach fund, including: Refugee Sponsorship, First Nations Scholarship, Fair Trade Sale, Canada Foodgrains Bank dinner and monthly oatmeal sale, Education and Advocacy, Sleeping Children Around the World

Benevolent fund

Mission and Service Fund

Kerr Street Mission

Wesley Urban Ministries

Neighbourhood Care Network

Local Food Banks

Insurance

Building maintenance

Telephone and internet

Custodial duties

Snowplow/grass cutting/ landscaping

Spring and fall cleanup days

Building rentals

Memorial garden

Memorial and special gifts

Manse upkeep – outside and inside

Utilities

Council and Committee Meetings

Seniors Fitness program

East Oakville Cards group

A Blessed People (Matthew 5)

A Grateful People (Philippians 4.4-7)

A Generous People (Luke 3.10-11)

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