Board

of

Stewardship


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Brad Townsend, Chairman
Ernest Koenig
Si'ufofoga Tufele

January, 2017

Greetings as Paul said many years ago: “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 1:3

All of us at St. Paul Lutheran Church have experienced many changes during the past 1 ½ years.  Perhaps the most notable example is a Pastoral Call process leading to offer, acceptance, and service.  Additionally, our congregation and other sponsors of the Lutheran Unity School Association (LUSA) are reviewing the educational ministry.  This started with a Voters Meeting approval of a motion to notify LUSA of St. Paul’s intent to withdraw.  Then, the Church Board of Directors commissioned an independent assessment of the school by the Lutheran Schools Consulting Service (LSCS) to provide additional perspective during the review.  Conversations continued between LUSA and grant benefactor Chicagoland Lutheran Educational Foundation (CLEF).  An update for decision should be brought to the Voters soon.  While all of that was going on, there were many activities of the Church and School 2016:

  

We pray that by the grace of Jesus Christ and inspiration of the Holy Spirit that we will make God-pleasing decisions.  “May the God of peace…equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to Him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory for ever and ever Amen.”  Hebrews 13:20-21

Your Freewill Giving and Service:  God grants each of us a unique amount of time, talent and treasure that we may use to advance Jesus’ ministry through St. Paul Lutheran Church and Unity School.  We carefully collect and track the money you give through envelopes, Simply Giving (automatic deposits and website giving), and loose plate (other cash, change, checks and fund raisers).  Please take a few minutes to check our accounting of your confidential and individual giving for calendar year 2016 on the enclosed statement.  We want it to be accurate for your tax records.  You may contact any member of the Board of Stewardship with questions or concerns.  Our numbers are at the bottom of this sheet.

Overall congregational giving is recorded at St. Paul on a fiscal year basis.  We are just past the half-way point of fiscal year 2016-2017.  Here is the status as of January 3rd:


INCOME        THIS YEAR

INCOME      LAST YEAR

DIFFERENCE        TO DATE

Total

$140,090

$162,480

-$22,390

Per Week

$5,189

$6,018

-$829

Total income to date this year is 8.6% under the income for the first half of last year.  We are never sure how many dollars everyone will offer for the fiscal year, but here is our estimate for Fiscal Year 2016-2017 compared with giving in FY 2015-2016:

ESTIMATED INCOME

INCOME LAST YEAR

DIFFERENCE YEAR-END

$270,000

$304,222

-$34,222

The Numbers Tell A Story:  Freewill giving was stable for 5 years from FY 2010-2011 to FY 2014-2015 at an average of $345,000.  Then, it dropped by over $40,000 to $304,000 in FY 2015-2016.  Giving is now on track to fall again in FY 2016-17 to $270,000.  The Board of Elders reports that worship service attendance is down.  Also, more members are leaving or passing on to glory than the congregation is gaining in new members.  This has prompted the Board of Directors, Pastor and others to take a fresh look at the church ministry.  Most agree that St. Paul needs to change.  This may include being more evangelistic, more relevant to the surrounding community, and involving young people.   Please offer your ideas, abilities, and prayers to this effort!

In any event, we thank everyone for your wonderful service and financial support of Jesus’ ministry here!  Please pray that all will continue serving God faithfully in ways that will be pleasing to Him.  “Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17

Please consider giving through Simply Giving and Website. It’s safe and convenient.

Please help a student enroll at LUSA.  Give to the Tabitha Tuition Assistance Fund.

In closing: “May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” 2 Corinthians 13:14

Board of Stewardship:    Please contact us regarding any of the above referenced programs!

Brad Townsend: btown196@aol.com    Ernie Koenig: 773-775-9470    Si’u Tufele: 773-286-3652


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ENDOWMENT COMMITTEE HOMEPAGE

click here

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TABITHA TUITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
This fund was established many years ago in the name of the woman Peter revived (Acts 9:36-42).  The purpose was to make it possible for children of parents with financial need to enroll as students at St. Paul Lutheran School.  Grants have been awarded to eligible families to pay a portion of tuition expenses.  This program continues to exist for members of St. Paul with students at Lutheran Unity School Association West Campus.  However, the donated dollars do not match the financial need of families.  Please consider a freewill monetary gift.  Just place it in one of the special envelopes marked “Tabitha Tuition Assistance Program” located in your box of giving envelopes.  You can also contact the School Office at 708-867-5044 to donate or ask for more information.