Does your Women of the ELCA group have money sitting unused in a bank account? As a wise woman has said, our organization is not a bank. We need to keep the money moving in ministry. Consider how you can put those dollars to work supporting the ministries of Women of the ELCA. What a privilege that is!
When you give to the churchwide women’s organization, you are making an investment in your future. Your giving comes back to you in the form of resources, publications, events, and support that enable you and the women of your congregation to live out our shared mission of mobilizing women to act boldly on their faith in Jesus Christ.
For the entire life of this organization, the churchwide executive board has encouraged congregational units (CUs) and synodical women’s organizations (SWOs) to spend down their accounts each year and direct the money to ministry, especially the ongoing ministries of Women of the ELCA.
CUs and SWOs are encouraged to spend down their monetary reserves in a way that reflects the interdependent relationships between the units, the synodical organizations and the churchwide women’s organization.
With fiscal year 2022 coming to a close on January 31, 2023, it’s now time to make those decisions.
It is up to each CU and SWO to annually decide how much to keep in reserves for the next year, while recognizing that every dollar saved is a dollar that does not support ministry today. In most cases, reserves of $1,000 or less are sufficient. For instance, your CU may need money to place a down payment on a retreat facility for future gatherings or to respond to emergency needs that arise early in the next fiscal year.
The churchwide executive board has consistently encouraged spending the dollars in a way that reflects the interdependence between congregational units, the synodical organizations, and the churchwide women’s organization. Interdependence is an important word for Women of the ELCA. Our founders used it many times in our constitutions, especially pertaining to finances.
Interdependence includes the understanding that all expressions of Women of the ELCA (unit, SWO, and churchwide) consider the needs of the others when making financial decisions.
Women of the ELCA is organized so that the SWOs and CUs do not need to keep large reserves from year to year. Neither CUs nor SWOs maintain staff, property, or ongoing liabilities for which significant reserves are necessary.
Instead, units are called to be communities of women that support each other and act to bring about healing and wholeness in the church, the society, and the world. SWOs connect units in mission with the churchwide organization. These purposes are best lived out by putting dollars to ministry, not storing those dollars away in a savings account or other financial instrument.
WAYS TO GIVE
Give to Women of the ELCA (welca.org/give) Where Needed Most, and support our ongoing ministries of advocacy, leadership development, discipleship and program resources, Gather magazine, Boldcafé e-zine and podcast, racial justice education, Bible studies, and so much more. If you’d like your gift to live on, supporting ministry far into the future, consider giving to 2122: Growing Katie’s Fund for the next 100 years. We have a great video (less than seven minutes long) that you can share or watch together that explains what the Katie’s Fund endowment has made possible so far.
Individuals can become a Faithful Friend of the organization by giving monthly through automatic withdrawal from their checking account or automatic charge to their credit card. Learn more at welca.org/faithfulfriends.
Visit womenoftheelca.org/give to learn more.