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One of our congregants - who generally doesn't pledge, but is very generous in her giving - offered up a Challenge Gift of $5000 if we got 35 pledges by Celebration Sunday (note that we are a congregation of about 50 families, so this was going to be a bit of a stretch).  I announced this a couple of weeks before Intent Sunday along with the statement "even if you are pledging $0, send in your pledge cards with that intent so that our budget committee can count that."  Not only did we exceed the goal (and our donor even submitted an intent card to help), but very few people pledge $0.      This also meant that our budget committee was able to finalize the 2021 budget weeks earlier than usual, since the stewardship appeal didn't drag out for months.

75% of pledge cards this year. Less than half last year.  27%  increase from last year.

The congregation has been turned in on itself in a time of anxiety. This program brought them into partnership with others and gave them the stability of a guide and coach...a first step towards growth. Thank you!

I want to say how much I appreciate that this “beginner” program was made available to us during this bizarre year - it has certainly made a great impact on our congregation’s view of generosity.

I expected that this program would help us put together a stewardship appeal but WOW! It has certainly exceeded my expectations in terms of the response we've been getting from folks in our community! Thank you for your work on the 3E Team and helping to make these resources available to congregations like ours! It has made a huge difference for us.

Contact Deb Elstad at for more information or to sign up for the next Beginning A Culture of Generosity session.