Archive for stewardship

Living Generosity: January Worship and Stewardship Theme

Have you noticed the huge heart posters that have been displayed in our Sanctuary entry and the entrance to Creekside, each heart filled with sightings of generosity? Last fall, our Extravagant Generosity Practice Committee asked us to notice moments or experiences of generosity and write these “generosity sightings” on cards that were placed inside the big hearts. It has been inspiring to see these hearts become filled with cards, each with an example of generosity, of loving and caring actions.

Since we have noticed and shared these generosity sightings, the heart posters are overflowing. We can’t help but feel drawn to the stories of extravagant giving, sharing, living, and loving. As our faces light up and our hearts are warmed, we realize that we were made for this. Our generous God designed us to be generous people. If you found joy and inspiration in reading the cards, and if you found your own heart overflowing with the desire to be more generous, maybe this is God’s way of growing your heart of generosity.

We will further explore these concepts in our next worship series on stewardship and generous hearts, “Living Generosity.” This stewardship season will include three Sundays focusing on Living Generosity and three gatherings to talk about stewardship in different ways, culminating in Commitment Sunday on February 5, when we will make our commitments to the 2017 LAUMC Operating Fund. As we prepare to commit to a plan of financial giving for the coming year at LAUMC, consider how God is nudging you to give extravagantly and imagine the impact of sharing your resources with our church and our world. Perhaps the next time we are asked to reflect on generosity sightings, it will be your own story that comes to mind.

Living Generosity Worship Series

January 15: Living Generosity: Responding. The scripture story from Luke 9:12-17 is of Jesus feeding the crowd of five thousand with five loaves and two fish.

January 22: Living Generosity: Realizing. The scripture from Mark 8:14-21 is of Jesus talking to the disciples, who do not understand the significance of his feeding miracle.

February 5: Living Generosity: Rejoicing. The scripture from 2 Corinthians 9:6-8, 10-15 reveals that God gives us gifts that God wants us to use generously. We will make our commitments to LAUMC’s Operating Fund as part of our living generosity. Holy Communion will be served.

Stewardship Gatherings

To support our stewardship focus, there will be three informational and participatory gatherings, designed to help us “live generosity” in 2017. Please consider attending at least one gathering.

Generosity: Gifts and Graphs
Thursday, January 26, 7:30pm, Creekside C/D
Would you like to understand the congregation’s giving patterns and the underlying demographics? Would you like to know more about how we invest our operating funds to support our ministries? Through our stewardship, we provide resources that enable LAUMC to live out generosity for our congregation and our community while, at the same time, we cultivate our own living generosity. Come learn more about the financial state of our congregation as Extravagant Generosity committee member Tonya Treble and Finance Chair Derek Nam host a discussion of how our stewardship can ensure a healthy future for LAUMC.

Generosity Across Generations
Friday, January 27, 6:00pm, Creekside Center
It’s tough to raise a family in the Bay Area. How can we be generous to the church and still pay for tuition, sports, extracurriculars, and a home, all while trying to pay off debt and save for retirement? What do we teach our kids about giving, and how do we set examples of living generosity for them? How can our practice of giving draw us closer to God and give us peace? Hear Brian Jones and other church leaders share their experiences, and then discuss what living generosity might look like for us. Come for a pizza supper at 6:00pm, followed by child care for young children, stewardship activities for older children, and interactive conversation for adults.

Generosity Sightings and Giant Sandwiches
Saturday, January 28, 12:00pm, Creekside C/D
Were your heart touched and spirit inspired by reading about or witnessing an act of extravagant generosity over the holidays? Phil Pompei will lead the gathering in sharing stories of “generosity sightings” over lunch and reflecting on how we might be inspired to respond with our own living generosity. Come with your stories and reflections and leave with full hearts and stomachs.

Sanctuary Building Committee Starts Feasibility Study

Our sanctuary renovation project moved an important step forward on June 26 when the Church Council, the governing body of LAUMC, unanimously approved that a feasibility study be conducted. Church Council authorized the Sanctuary Building Committee to hire the firm of Netzel Grigsby & Associates to perform this work and approved an Opportunity Fund grant of $37,000 for this purpose. This grant will cover all costs associated with the study, including the Netzel Grigsby contract and all associated costs necessary to support that firm’s work.

The feasibility study has three major objectives. First, it will assess LAUMC’s collective capacity and intent to support the proposed project. Specifically, the Church Council will gain a clear understanding of our financial capacity to support the capital spending required for the project. Second, and equally important, the study will provide a clear understanding of our capacity and readiness to sustainably support annual giving to LAUMC apart from these capital needs. Finally, we will gain a thorough understanding of our collective support of the project’s scope—to what degree it encompasses what we want done.

Work on this feasibility study has begun and will continue through October. At the study’s conclusion, Netzel Grigsby will report its summary findings along with recommendations for next steps. The Building Committee will share those results with the congregation through LAUMC’s communication channels.

The feasibility study is an important step in the project approval process, but certainly not the final one. At each step, we continue wanting to hear from you. Please email the Sanctuary Building Committee if you have further questions or comments about this study or the project.

Resurrected Hearts Worship Series, April 3–24

In April, our worship theme will be about dedicating ourselves to being Easter people, people with resurrected hearts. We will reflect on how as Easter people we can develop servant hearts, using our time, talents, treasure, and testimony to serve a living Christ.

  • April 3: Time, Psalm 90:12-17
  • April 10: Talent, 1 Peter 4:8-10
  • April 17: Treasure, Matthew 6:19-21
  • April 24: Testimony, John 15:26-27

Come find out more about developing the heart of a servant and using the gifts God has given us.