Just when you think you have “wrapped up” your parish stewardship program… wait, there’s more!
What is your response to your stewardship campaign?
Before you put your campaign results on the shelf, take some time with your Stewardship Committee and Vestry to understand how your campaign performed, what trends you might uncover in generosity, and how your message was received by your members. Asking a few questions now can help your congregation plan for the coming year’s campaign.
It is important for the committee to meet a few weeks after the end of the campaign to discuss, and to consider the response of parishioners to the stewardship program.
TENS, The Episcopal Network for Stewardship, suggests the following when you examine your campaign success:
- How much did you raise from how many gifts?
- How many new gifts did the campaign receive?
- How many households increased their giving?
- How many households decreased their giving?
- How many pledge cards stayed the same?
- If you use electronic giving, did the number using it increase?
- Did anyone indicate that they would like information on planned giving or including the church their estate plans?
Then present the results to the parish. You are encouraged to share pledge data with your congregation.
A helpful graphic that shows the results of your campaign looks like this:
The Pyramid helps us understand giving patterns. It particularly shows how the giving total is impacted by each level of giving. How do the smallest gifts combine to create a solid base for our campaign? How do the largest gifts enable our ministry?
The next step for the Stewardship Committee is to meet monthly, or every other month. Regularly. Stewardship is not simply a campaign in the fall; it is year-round. Regular committee meetings offer the opportunity to:
- Plan ways to keep stewardship on the minds of your parishioners.
- Use the parish newsletter, social media platforms, and the church website to tell the stories about how church ministries throughout the year are made possible through the generosity of parishioners.
- Present opportunities for parishioners to use their time and talent to share in church activities, programs, outreach, and more.
- Consider having a chairperson for the annual stewardship program, and a chairperson for year-round stewardship activities.
Be sure you take full advantage of all TENS offers to help you develop and enact the best stewardship programs for your parish. Sign-up for webinars. Learn about techniques and expertise to help you offer stewardship campaigns for this year and for years to follow. TENS offers webinars throughout the year.
The Diocese of Atlanta’s Stewardship Commission is a valuable resource for your stewardship committee. We offer workshops during the year and are always available for conversations about stewardship. Contact Tammy Pallot, Tammy Pallot <firstname.lastname@example.org>, for questions, and suggestions you may have. We are your stewardship resource in your diocese. Together we are partners in bringing the good news of our gratitude to God, and how to turn that gratitude into action through sharing our abundance with our neighbors, our community, and our parish.
You will find a Toolkit for Evaluating Stewardship Campaign Performance at TENS.org. The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta has provided a TENS members for every parish. For more information about TENS and how to login with the password, contact Ginny Heckel email@example.com, a member of the Stewardship Commission.
Ginny Heckel, Stewardship Commission member.