Ironicschmoozer’s Weblog

Charity Begins at Home!
May 13, 2009, 10:58 am
Filed under: Children and Youth, Family Ministry

Charity Begins at Home!

But It Doesn’t End There

Family Minister’s newsletter column for February 2009

            In the 1960s and 70s, Mom and I attended a moderate Protestant

congregation.  Dad came along a few times a year.  Every Sunday Mom would

write a check to the church for $20.  I was struck by her voluntarily parting with hard-

earned money.  She explained that’s how the church was able to do its work,

pay the pastor, organist and secretary.  Wow! 

            The Rev. Dr. Rebecca Parker (at our UU seminary in Berkeley) has said that she learned to tithe growing up in a Methodist family; the kids in the family would set aside 10% of their allowance for the church.  She continues that practice and encourages all UUs to do so. 

            As a seminary president, she speaks with many people to ask them to make large gifts and bequests for UU ministerial education. 

            Generous people with wealth tell her that they learned to give, to love giving,

from their families and  congregations.

Giving is a link to their ancestors and a way for them to shape the future.   

            It seems clear that charity begins at home—but it doesn’t end there! 

It connects us to all of humanity.  Giving brings a sense of wellbeing. 

            If you have kids, I invite you to show them how you help the world

financially.  For starters, consider the upcoming pledge drive as a teaching

opportunity.  You could explain that a pledge is a financial promise and even

show them a pledge card. You could show them your checkbook, noting

that money goes to pay bills and for vacations, entertainment, etc. 

            AND THEN you could say you give some of it away, tell them why, and tell them how it makes you feel to give money away.  Let me know how it goes. 




PS— Yes, this month is a great opportunity to engage in this learning and giving practice, as UUSS launches our Stewardship Drive to support the programs, people, outreach and other ministries of the congregation, to promote the warmth of community and the fire of commitment.  It is the time when members and friends make their financial pledge to UUSS for the upcoming fiscal year, which will start July 1.

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