Renewing for Generations 2012
- June 30 - Renewing for Generations 2009 ends
- Please bring your 2009 pledge up-to-date by June 30.
- July 1 - Renewing for Generations 2012 begins
- Your new pledge is for July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2015.
From our chair of Renewing for Generations 2012
A reading from Paul’s letter to the Philippians: Live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent and hear about you, I will know that you are standing firm in one spirit, striving side by side with one mind for the faith of the gospel.
What brings you to this place? There are probably many reasons why each of us is here. I suspect that at the root the reason is similar for all of us. We want to be part of a particular Christian community. Like the Philippians, to whom Paul was writing, we have found something valuable in being together in Christ.
Many years ago, when our family first moved to this area, we wanted to belong to a Christian community, and we found Trinity Lutheran Church, which welcomed us. We have no family in the area and the people of this community became our brothers and sisters, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.
Why is this so? Why do we gather together? I believe that Christian community is one of God’s gifts. Within the community we encourage and inspire each other, share our faith and minister together to all of God’s people. We welcome all people to our Christian community — who are we to deny anyone one of God’s greatest gifts? Our ministry is enriched by being in community and together we accomplish things that would be impossible on our own. The Christian community is God’s tool as well as God’s gift. Paul compared the Christian community to the body of Christ. As a community we are Jesus’ hands and feet in the world. We are his eyes, ears, nose and lips. And we are Jesus’ wallet as well. Our stewardship must involve all parts of our lives—our hearts, our minds and our treasure. All of these things are gifts of God—given to us to use for his ministry as well as to take care of ourselves.
Three years ago we raised the funds to begin the renovation of our existing education unit and to new space for ministry. This was a necessary and faith-filled action. Our educational wing was desperately in need of a complete overhaul and we needed to solve problems of access and space for all of our ministries. The money we raised in pledges, over $600,000, allowed us to accomplish the renovation, add another wing to the building, build a new nursery adjacent to the sanctuary and provide, for the first time since our family joined, enough rooms for all of our Sunday morning classes. It was a difficult decision, made when the economy was clearly headed for difficult times. We took a leap of faith and I think we’ve landed solidly.
Now we must take another leap of faith. We have a mortgage on our beautiful renewed and expanded building that needs to be paid. The commitments we make now will have a huge effect to reduce the total cost of the mortgage. I think it would not be difficult for us to raise the money necessary to meet the mortgage payments—only about $226,000 total over three years. But every extra dollar we pay above that amount will mean less interest payments down the road. If we only raise $300,000, just $75,000 beyond what is necessary; we will save at least $120,000 in interest. If we raise $500,000 total, a little more than double what is necessary, we will save $360,000 in interest. That savings is money that could go to other ministries, to meet the needs of God’s people everywhere. Raising this kind of money now is good stewardship of our financial resources. We are calling on everyone to participate. We need your hands and hearts as well as your dollars.
So now I ask you to pray — to have that important conversation with God about money. And after your conversation with God, be ready to receive the invitation to participate in this campaign—with the heart, hands and wallet that are God’s gifts to you.
The Philippians were one of Paul’s beloved Christian communities. He praised them for standing together in faith and for their generosity, both to him and to the needy Christian communities in Palestine. I pray that we too, can stand together to meet both this challenge as well as the challenges of being God’s witness to the world.
Amen and thank YOU!
David K., Chair