So often in my travels and discussions with parishes around the country, I hear questions from people who just don’t get what stewardship is all about. Many parishes are simply looking for a quick fix to boost the offertory, and are misguided in their belief that a “stewardship program” designed to increase parish revenue is the way to go.
Truth is, stewardship is all about helping parishioners grow in their relationship with Christ. To develop stewardship in a parish and experience substantial long-term growth, it takes a commitment solely focused on the ongoing spiritual development of every individual parishioner, and a desire to help strengthen each parishioner’s relationship with God. The more committed a parish is to this focus, the more likely they will experience success.
But we also don’t live in a vacuum. We know that most parishes need increases in their offertory to fund parish programs and ministries, not to mention to just pay the bills.
The parishes we work with each and every day “get it.” Our parish clients understand that true stewardship starts with bringing parishioners into a living relationship with Christ. And once a parish embraces and practices our holistic approach to stewardship development, they experience concrete results.
We recently conducted an analysis of our parish clients to see how developing the spirituality of stewardship has impacted them during the 2011-12 fiscal year, and the numbers are impressive. Listed below are just a few of our findings:
♦ On average, our parish clients experienced 501 NEW commitments to parish ministries.
♦ Our clients also saw significant commitments to personal and family prayer, reporting an average of over 1,750 new prayer commitments.
♦ On average, our parish clients experienced a 27% pledged offertory increase resulting in an average total increase of $146,000.
Your parish can experience similar results and do amazing things with a year-round, holistic, spiritually-focused, and practical approach to stewardship. If you are interested in finding out how Catholic Stewardship Consultants can help you make this a reality, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, for those of you heading to Chicago this weekend for the International Catholic Stewardship Council Annual Conference, feel free to stop by the Catholic Stewardship Consultants booth at the ICSC to meet with me or one of our representatives. We will be happy to give you more information.