Providing giving envelopes, hosting a variety of ministries, and offering parishioners ample opportunities for increasing prayer life are all noble endeavors for parishes seeking to teach their congregation how to live out a stewardship way of life.
But, it’s not enough.
If parishioners don’t know about the existence of these opportunities, they certainly can’t take advantage of them. So, what is the best way to educate parishioners on the ways to embrace a stewardship way of life and help them to take concrete action?
According to the University of Notre Dame Institute for Church Life’s study titled “Steps in the Journey to Becoming a More Generous Person,” just talking about tithing or parish ministries or prayer time alone won’t necessarily lead to a parish filled with more generous stewards.
“Simply talking about tithing will not likely lead to the emergence of a large number of tithers in the parish,” the study says. “Changing parish cultures and people is a process that takes time and requires Catholics, themselves, to consciously choose and implement habitual practices of giving.”
This recommendation of providing consistent, regular, and committed giving opportunities to share of time, talents, and treasure, is also the process Catholic Stewardship Consultants has implemented with parishes for almost two decades.
Doing so provides parishioners a chance to regularly stay accountable and draw closer in their path to stewardship through a change of culture – the only way to generate stewardship in action.