Investing In Our Future

This time last year, we asked the congregation for £13,500 to balance the books. Everyone was asked to pray about what they could give – and then give. The result was £13,700. Alleluia!

This year, our Treasurer estimates we need £12,500. The 2013 total costs will be £65,000, ie Parish Share (£38,000,) loan repayment (£7,000) insurance, utilities, renovating vestry, etc. This ALL has to be raised by us, St John’s, ie from Collections, Standing Orders, other fundraising, donations, our Hall.

But £97,000 is the true 2013 cost of running St John’s. London churches will again generously subsidise us, this year by £32,000. Ultimately, this is NOT in our interests, as it raises a query about our viability, and it is a bar on our having a paid curate.

Things would be greatly helped by increased regular giving, ie standing orders. Presently, these total £31,250 pa. C of E stats rank average giving by Diocese – top is Birmingham (5.7%,) Hereford bottom (2%) London 4.1%. Assuming 90 ‘unit givers’ and an average salary of £30,000, each of us at St John’s, on average, is contributing only 1% pa.

People give generously when they share a vision and believe in something. Christian giving includes these, but is first a response to all that God has done for us. It is also very practical, as we are investing our money in building the Kingdom of God – and not going along with the empty claims of mammon.

The potential of St John’s is very exciting – where a wide range of people come to meet to worship God; experiencing new strength, hope and trust; and a true hospitality is lived out, close to all those in our neighbourhood, especially all living near the edges.

Brian Grumbridge and Tom Gillum