Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the way of Christ.
One of the more challenging realities of leadership is that we are simultaneously called to live fully in the present, evaluate our past efforts, and set a course for the future. While you, our parish clergy and lay leaders, are courageously leaning into the particular intensity of this moment, you’re also taking stock of how dramatically your congregation has been impacted by the pandemic. As summer begins, you’re planning for the fall and laying a foundation for ministry in 2021.
Small wonder you’re tired. But here’s a bit of good news to save you time and energy as your plan for the fall.
The Financial Resources Committee has once again produced an Annual Giving Toolkit for EDOW congregations, with materials needed for a thoughtful, inspiring pledge campaign. They’ve identified a theme, created a timeline, and drafted templates of key communication. You’re welcome to adapt any or all of these materials to best serve your congregation.
This year’s theme, Doing What Love Requires, invites each of us to accept the love Jesus offers and his call to live a way of love in Christian community. It harkens back to Presiding Bishop Curry’s question to all who seek to follow Jesus: what would love do? It creates space to have pastorally supportive conversations with those who are unable to support their congregation financially and inspire those who are able to give more, because that, in fact, is what love requires.
As a diocese, we’ve witnessed through the COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund both the intense financial need of some in our diocesan family and the incredible generosity of those who have means to help. I pray that the same spirit of mutual concern will sustain our congregations at a time when their ministries are so very important.
May this resource lighten the burden of leadership for you and give you another experience of time this summer–that of rest and renewal.