Introducing A New Pledging Process Intended to Make Your Life Easier (Yes, Really!)
As the leaves begin to fall, your Stewardship Committee is focused on planting seeds for the future. As the doors of our church continue to open wider and we continue our return to meeting in person as well as via Zoom, we’re optimistic about the seeds we’re planting. That’s why we’ve chosen Growing Our Garden Together as the theme of this year’s Stewardship Campaign.
Part of the Stewardship Committee’s job is to reevaluate how we go about financing the work of our church. Just as grafting one plant with another may increase the productivity and efficiency of a fruit tree or crop, we are trying something a little different with this year’s campaign.
In previous years, we provided you with your pledge amount from the previous year and asked you to increase it if you could. This year, we are providing you with a pledge amount that takes your pledge from the previous year and increases it by 3.5%—about the level of inflation and also an increase that will enable the church to cover its expenses in 2023. This is called a “rollover pledge.”
Many Unitarian churches (including Rev. Kate’s former church in Alexandria, VA) use the rollover pledging system. The Stewardship Committee decided to adopt this approach after meeting with a UU Stewardship Consultant and giving it thoughtful consideration. This process will allow the Board of Trustees to more easily reach an expectation for next year’s budget.
This pledging change will also allow the Stewardship Committee to make personal contact with members of the church in a more planned way: The committee will now contact one-third of the congregation each year to talk about general church stewardship matters (not just your pledge). So, you can expect to speak with a member of the Stewardship Committee at least once every three years. We want to hear your ideas and your hopes for our church as we take on the challenge of growing our garden together. If you would like to be contacted this year, please contact the Stewardship Committee at Stewardship@first-unitarian-pgh.org.
Look for your pledge letter with your specific pledge amount in the mail next week. You then have until October 31 to either (a) do nothing and allow this pledge to stand or (b) go to an online form and adjust (up or down) your pledge amount. Alternatively, you can fill out the form on the letter and return it to the church by October 31 with your 2023 pledge amount.
Please make your financial commitment to our beloved community so that we may continue the wonderful educational programs, music, worship, and outreach we all value so much.
Thank you for your thoughtful attention to this request and for making any change to your rollover pledge by October 31!