2020 Annual Giving Toolkit
Guidelines for a Successful Parish Annual Giving Campaign
Doing what love requires — An Introduction
What does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.
The Episcopal Diocese of Washington is pleased to share the 2020 Online Annual Giving Toolkit. The theme for this year, “Doing What Love Requires,” focuses on the complex times in which we find ourselves.
Undertaking an Annual Giving Campaign is an opportunity for parish leadership to remind congregations that their financial pledges are a crucial investment in the life and ministry of the church. Recalling the prophet Micah, Presiding Bishop Michael Curry reminds us that as followers of Jesus, we must ask ourselves and our communities “What would love do?” Answering this question is our life’s work, and we are privileged to stand among the saints who have done what love required of them in their time and place. Now it is our turn to answer the question and focus on the many ways in which we can respond in love to the needs around us.
Over the past few months, when our physical buildings have been closed, the courageous and necessary work of ministry has continued. We’ve seen love in action — collecting and distributing food, offering a witness for justice, standing in solidarity with marginalized communities, reaching out to the isolated and to those who have lost jobs and livelihoods. We have sustained one another in countless ways, from delivering groceries to mowing lawns to caring for children and elders. Despite the restrictions of stay-at-home orders, churches quickly identified opportunities to continue to worship, learn, study, and be in fellowship with one another.
“Doing What Love Requires” also includes the continued financial support of our churches. More than ever, we must express our love and gratitude by continuing to pledge to the parish that is our spiritual home. In the midst of the pandemic, the on-going financial commitment of parishioners has permitted churches to continue to pay clergy and staff as well as provide the support for ministry. Going forward, it will be essential for that support to continue and grow. Although we face a future marked by uncertainty, challenges, and change, God’s love and faithfulness is constant. We can reflect that love by “Doing What Love Requires.”
No two congregations are the same in terms of available time and resources to conduct their Annual Giving Campaign. With this in mind, we invite you to explore, modify, and use these materials in whatever ways will be most helpful to your parish. Your greatest success will come from adapting the timeline and other materials to reflect your congregation’s unique needs and experiences. Please don’t hesitate to ask questions if something seems unclear or if you’d like further guidance. The Financial Resources Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington is ready to assist you in conducting a successful Annual Giving Campaign.
We will continue to add resources to the toolkit in the coming weeks, including suggestions and strategies for conducting an Annual Giving Campaign online.
Email the Financial Resources Committee
A Note on Stewardship
While these materials are crafted to be used with a targeted, months-long Annual Giving Campaign, stewardship is a year-round process.
The Episcopal Church reminds us:Stewardship is about being grateful, responsible stewards of the gifts we receive from God. The tradition of giving back to God and to the church comes from the Biblical practice of "tithing," which means to give back a tenth of our earnings to God (Numbers 18:26). The Episcopal Church sees stewardship as more than simply contributing money to the church; it's also about contributing time and talents, and volunteering for ministry and mission. It's about reaching out to build relationships from a perspective of abundance instead of scarcity.
The Financial Resources Committee of the Diocese of Washington is committed to helping our parishes in all aspects of stewardship. Please let us know how we can help.
If you are looking for Stewardship materials that encompass more than an Annual Giving Campaign, we've gathered many wonderful resources with tools for year-round stewardship practices as well as seasonal stewardship activities.
Project Resource seeks to change our culture and systems around financial development in the worldwide Episcopal Church, as it provides the tools to inspire radical generosity and engage faith communities in this life-changing work. Learn more: https://project-resource.org
Episcopal Church Foundation
The Episcopal Church Foundation helps Episcopal faith communities develop strategy, leadership, and financial resources for ministry and provides materials and resources specifically for stewardship and annual giving. Learn more: https://www.episcopalfoundation.org/about/news/topic/stewardship
The Episcopal Network for Stewardship (TENS)
TENS is a network of leaders, churches, and dioceses devoted to building healthier giving cultures for greater ministry impact. They provide numerous resources for annual giving. Learn more: https://www.tens.org