Covenant Presbyterian’s Principles of Generous Financial Giving
Session adopted the following principles in the summer of 2009 to guide stewardship committees and Covenant in cultivating a culture of generosity. Though Covenant has undergone many changes in the period since these principles were developed, the Covenant Presbyterian Foundation (CPF), which recently started an education campaign to help members prepare for retirement, is committed to following these principles. The Foundation dedicates this article to JJ Baskin, who was instrumental in the formation of the resource team and the drafting of the principles of generous financial giving at Covenant.
• Generosity is transformational. We believe that people grow in their faith by giving joyfully and sacrificially. As people grow in their faith and spiritual maturity, we believe they will grow in their giving—both in amount and percentage of income.
• We are called to give of our time, talent and treasure for the glory of God. Disciples don’t pick and choose which kind of gifts they share, they live and give of all they have.
• We are committed to helping members connect their faith to finances. We will equip members with scriptures and commentary for prayer, reflection, and discernment as they build their commitments of giving. Examples include:
o Reflections upon New Testament scriptures relating to possessions, wealth and need, as well as the biblical basis of giving
o Reflections upon the tradition of tithing as referenced in the Old and New Testaments
o Reflections upon the blessings of abundance and the joy of generosity
o An understanding that financial giving is not a function of discretionary income, but first fruits
o An understanding that the love of money, not money itself, erodes our spiritual health, allowing our hearts to prioritize and even worship things other than God
o Comprehensive education and support for overseeing personal finances that the Lord has entrusted to us
o An understanding that water drops in buckets can become oceans when we collectively place our gifts in God’s hands
• It is Covenant’s role to cultivate a culture of generosity. Joyous giving happens when we are faithful and put ourselves into God’s hands. We will not be anxious about financial matters, but faithful and celebratory.
o Our community will be intentional about regularly communicating our ministry vision, celebrating victories, giving abundantly and painting a vivid picture of God’s gifts at work in our world
o We will invite, collect and share stories of transformational giving
• It is also the role of Covenant to be transparent and faithful stewards. Such an atmosphere builds trust among members and in our community. Trust—like giving—is not seasonal, but year-round.
• Generous giving is part of our relationship with God. One expectation of Covenant members is supporting the church and its ministries. When we join this congregation, we promise God and one another that we will support the church. When we become leaders of the congregation, we promise to model joyful and sacrificial giving.
For more information about Covenant Presbyterian Foundation, please visit covenant.org/foundation/ or contact Duane Dube or any Trustee: Elizabeth Christian, Everard Davenport, Dianne Erlewine, Larry Faulkner, JoAnne McIntosh, Megan Poore and Tana Taylor. Covenant Presbyterian Foundation supports Covenant Presbyterian Church by assisting donors to be Faithful to Generations, during and beyond their own lives, by receiving and growing their gifts, and using them to help fulfill the donors’ glorification of God.
One generation will commend your works to another