In seminary a classmate of mine was sitting next to a bishop for a service. At the end of said service, the bishop turned to my classmate and said, "Don't ever hold a Eucharist and not do an offering." As one who enjoys the art of fundraising, I have never forgotten that little tidbit. Well, until this Easter Sunday, which wasn't a Eucharist, but the principle still holds. When we had visitors online from all over the US, I forgot to remind people to put something in the plate to speak, even if it is electronic and online. Now I know St. Cross's finances aren't do or die based on Easter, but it is when we get one of our two largest collections of the year. A humbling reminder that I am not perfect, sighhhhh.
But thinking about habits of giving has me thinking about how we are all trying to survive. While yes, we need your pledges if you can pay them, and if you can add some on we need that too. But as a church community, I also hope that we are supporting the local businesses that have supported us when we have asked. Java Man, Gum Tree, Uncorked, Fritto Misto, Tin Roof, and pages: a bookstore are some that come to my mind off the top of my head. They aren't chains. They are local families, most of whom I know or at least have met, and you have might too. What is it that we can do to support our local economy? How can we lend a hand if or when we are out shopping or going for the splurge dining out? Going local IS loving your neighbor. Let's do what we can St. Cross to use our personal spending power to be neighborly.
Yours in Christ,