Blessings and Generosity: 2015 Operating Pledge Drive
October is Pledge Drive Month!
The autumn is upon us, a time of harvest and the visible abundance of life all around us. We gather that abundance from the fields and the orchards. We gather at the table with our families and friends, and express our gratitude. At Unity Church we gather again with friends, old and new, to pray and sing, share food and stories, and find the inspiration needed to live our lives boldly with meaning and purpose.
October is the time each year when we gather our pledges of financial support — and this year we are asking for your support for both for the operating budget and for the church’s capital needs.
Our operating budget pays for worship, pastoral care, music, religious education, community outreach, governance, administration and operations. The costs include staff salaries, benefits, fixed and variable expenses. Over eighty percent of the operating budget is supported by your pledges, and it is your generous participation that enables Unity Church to make a powerful impact within, among and beyond our walls.
If you are currently pledging, we are asking you to increase your pledge by five percent or more next year so we can more adequately support our programs, compensate our staff, and live into our dreams. If you are new to Unity Church or not currently pledging, we refer you to our Giving Guide (on the back of your pledge card) to inform your decision. We are also asking you to consider your operating pledges for 2016 and 2017 so that we are more able to project our resources into the near future.
Those of us who are not new to Unity Church know about capital giving. In 2011 we engaged the whole congregation in conversation about the needs and the future of our facilities. In 2012 we underwent an $8 million capital project that repaired and replaced infrastructure, added sprinkler systems, new restrooms, a commercial kitchen and a beautiful, welcoming main entry that is accessible by all. We were successful in raising over $6.8 million toward this project but without additional capital giving our debt service will have a significant impact on our programs and staff beginning in 2016. Additionally, we deferred installing a sprinkler system in the Sanctuary, thinking that we would address this with a Phase II capital project to build a new Sanctuary. The Executive Team, its trusted advisors, and the Board of Trustees have decided to not proceed with a new Sanctuary in the near future, so we need to raise capital funds to address the Sanctuary sprinkler system. In short, our goal is to raise an additional $3 million in capital giving over the next three years.
How can you help? If you made a capital campaign commitment to our Unity Tomorrow project, and if your commitment is complete or will be complete in the next year, we are asking you to consider extending your capital giving. We want you to know that your operating pledges should take priority, but your capital giving will allow us to pay down the debt, install a sprinkler system in the Sanctuary and address ongoing capital needs as they arise.
In the first week of October you will receive your 2015-2017 pledge materials in the mail. Please bring your pledge card to church with you on Celebration Sunday, October 12, when we will participate in a ritual of giving at all three services. Our guest preacher will be The Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern. If you will not be in church on October 12, please drop off or mail your pledge card, or pledge online.
We need to hear from you! Knowing how much you intend to contribute informs our budgeting process and allows us to plan for the upcoming years. The 2015 Operating and Capital budgets will be submitted to the congregation for your approval at our Annual Meeting on Saturday morning, November 15.
Please give generously!
2015 Pledge Online
Download and Print Forms
Coming Soon (pdf)
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