Should I Pledge? Where does the money go? How much should I pledge?
-submitted by Julia Rossi, Pledge Committee
You may not realize it but the Unitarian Universalist Association website offers a world of information. I have attempted to briefly answer some of the big questions but you might just want to go there yourself! Congregational Stewardship Q&A (http://www.uua.org/finance/fundraising/generosity/185418.shtml)
Why do we pledge?
The church belongs to each of us. We pledge to fund the daily operations and to ensure that the church and its resources are here for us and for others now and in the future.
What is the money used for?
Pledges are a major component of our annual budget. The money supports our worship and music programs, religious education, adult programs, community outreach and the physical and environmental space where we gather. The annual budget includes salaries, benefits, maintenance, repairs, supplies, utilities, and more.
Is pledging a requirement of membership?
We expect that those who benefit from the church and participate in activities will share in its financial upkeep. Some members are able to pledge more but we can all share in pledging generously to our church.
What about the money I put in the collection plate?
The offering plate can be used to make a pledge payment as long as the offering can be associated with you, e.g. your personal check that indicates you wish it to go towards your pledge. However, collection plate contributions, while always welcomed, do not allow the church to create a budget that meets the ongoing needs of the church such as personnel salaries.
What if my financial circumstances change during the year, if I lose my job or have a financial emergency?
Lives are not static. Contact our church administrator, Hal Gonzales, if you need to adjust your pledge.
What is the best way to pledge?
The absolutely best way is to set up an automatic monthly withdrawal from your bank account. While some people chose to use their credit cards, the church loses quite a bit of the pledge money to credit card fees. In addition, credit cards can get lost or expire. It creates extra work on the part of our staff to track down the replacement credit card!
How much should I pledge?
I recommend consulting the The UUA Suggested Fair-Giving Guide online or ask Hal for a
printed copy. (http://www.uua.org/sites/live-new.uua.org/files fair_share_contribution_guide.pdf)