Annual Stewardship Campaign: How To Do It (Squirming Not Required)

Late into summer the days are shorter and the nights are blessedly cooler and much, more comfortable. The kids have ‘joyfully’ returned to school. College football is back. Department stores already have Halloween, Thanksgiving and even some Christmas decorations out on the shelves. “Time and tide waits for no one,” or so did say St. Marher in the year of our Lord, 1225. Or, was it Goeffrey Chaucer in his “The Prologue to the Clerk’s Tale” of 1368? Regardless, some one said it and it fits.

At St. Nicholas, it is time for us to begin the conversation about Stewardship.

We, as a community, have been extraordinarily and graciously generous. This community of faith, our St. Nicholas Church family understands the need for financial support in order for us to continue to provide ministry and worship both within and outside the church. The kindness shown St. Nicholas by each member allows us to keep the lights on, heat and air to keep us comfortable and safe, make necessary repairs and improvements, grow our gardens for the greater glory of God, purchase the necessary items needed at worship and helps to keep our food pantry shelves stocked. And yes, our generosity helps finance our staff’s salary. We are exceptionally fortunate that the Support Groups that call St. Nicholas home continue to share their bounty with us as well. Their generosity helps defray some of the cost of utilities and other such expenses.

Finances are a very personal matter. It is a delicate and sensitive subject. Truthfully, it makes us all squirm a bit and personally, I do not feel comfortable bringing up the subject. Nonetheless, it is a necessary and important conversation that must be had. Without the financial support of our church family, we would be unable to accomplish all that we do.

We will begin our Annual Stewardship Campaign in early October. I ask us all to pray, to discern and to think about how we can continue to help and support our church. Let us all consider how best we can create a healthy and vibrant house of worship. There are various way to pledge to the church. This will all be explained with inserts and articles in upcoming editions of News From Nick and mailings. Please; it is not our intention to burden any one. We ask that we all give, as we can and what we can. Time shared in ministry and volunteering, along with the sharing of talent for the betterment of others is just as important as the financial, “bottom dollar.” All that is received helps us to not just exist, but to grow stronger and healthier. Any questions, concerns or thoughts, please do not hesitate in approaching any one of our finance team members, (Bob Kalicki, Ray Malecek and me) we’re here to help and assist as best we can.

“Therefore I say unto you, What things, soever you desire, when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them.”
Mark 11: 24

In advance, thank you everyone for your consideration, your thoughtfulness and your willing generosity.



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Father Manny: A Penny For Your Thoughts for the Children of Syria

A single penny may not be much of a thing to us. If you live on the streets and are hungry more often than sufficiently fed, a penny may well make a huge difference.

The children of Syria have suffered untold and unspeakable horrors. The civil war that has literally torn that nation to shreds has taken its toll on everyone there, yet most especially the children. No child, whether in Syria, the Sudan or South Carolina should endure deprivation and poverty of such unimaginable proportion and depth.

Our Lenten exercise of “A Penny for your Thought” was our effort, albeit a figurative drop in a seemingly bottom-less bucket at trying to make a change in the lives of children living in a foreign land most of us will never visit or come to know too well. Nonetheless, it was OUR effort. It was OUR intention, prayerfully guided and divinely inspired to make a difference, to bring the basic staples to kids that need any and all help possible. The good, loving and generous people of this church, this Community of St. Nicholas once again, came to the fore and showed what we are made of.

The final total provided us by our Jennifer Brundige…drum roll, please, comes out to $175.00 raised. Now, St. Nicholas will match that total. The funds we shall use will not come from any department that will put us in a tough spot. Rather, we shall use funds that were given to me, for my personal use when I was installed as vicar. I tell you, I can’t think of any better way to share something gifted to me than with kids who desperately need our help.

The Community of St. Nicholas will cut a check in the amount of $350.00 and send it off to the Episcopal Relief Fund. They, in turn, will see to it that every single penny will go toward aid and assistance for the children of Syria who need it most.

From my heart to yours…thank you, everyone, for caring and sharing so generously and so lovingly. We profess that at St. Nicholas, all are welcome…period. How blessed to extend this invitation to children in a far-away country who have probably never heard of Elk Grove Village or who St. Nicholas is. But, with this small but powerful token of our love and care, kids will get a little dose of who St. Nicholas really is, become part of our family and hopefully, change their lives for the better.