November 1, 2022

Dear Members and Friends:

This past year the generosity of our church congregation has been exemplary. In spite of Covid-19 and its mutations you have gathered together to support each other and the ministry of your church in all times; be they good or bad, in body, spirit, mind, and in financial support or stewardship.

Stewardship means being faithful with God's resources in whatever situation we're in. We can be faithful stewards in the midst of debt. We can be faithful stewards in the midst of plenty. Faithfulness in stewardship is not so much about where we are financially, but more about being obedient with God's resources in whatever financial situation we are in.

God calls all of us to Biblical standards of stewardship. But exactly what that looks like differs in different circumstances. Jesus told the rich young man to sell everything and give to the poor, then come and follow him; but he made no such request of Zacchaeus, who nonetheless demonstrated Biblical stewardship in his own way (compare Matthew 19:16-22 with Luke 19:1-9).

This reminds us that financial support, in the form of a pledge to the Operating Budget is vital to carry out the church's work. The uncertainty of these times makes determining the church's budget difficult. Inflation and investment income uncertainty make this even more difficult. Over the past year many costly repairs have come to light. The church slate roofing needs repairs as is evident by the rust staining on the Sanctuary ceiling and the removal of pew cushions and placement of buckets and/or pans below it to attempt to contain leakage prior to rain being forecasted. The vestry furnace had to be replaced, and the associated chimney repaired. The clock steeple needs rotting wood replaced and repainting. The small steeple needs painting. The parsonage, due to its age, has siding, windows, doors, and decking that need to be replaced. All of these items come with a large price tag. Your pledge is the best way to let your leadership know how much financia support t e church is likely to see next year.

Besides the bricks and mortar are the church employees; Pastor Dave, the music leaders, the custodial staff, etc. The cost of the Church staff is a significant part of the Church budget. Galatians 6:6 says "Nevertheless, one who receives instruction in the word should share all good things with their instructor." Your pledge supports the ministry provided by these personnel.

There is also a cost for the successful production of the live streaming of the church services. Many of our congregation benefit from this service.

Our Church continues to do well. We, your Board of Trustees, ask each of you to prayerfully consider making a commitment to helping these needs, be it as the rich young man in Matthew 19, or Zacchaeus in Luke 19, or in whatever your situation may be. Increasing your pledge by any amount will help cover cost increases. It may be difficult, in the current climate, for you to do this and we certainly understand that decision.

There is a pledge form on the reverse of this letter. Please cut it out and use it to make your pledge to your Church for 2022. It may be placed in the collection containers at church or mailed to our Church Collector, Cindy Moore, in care of the church.

Thank you so very much for your past generosity, your active participation in Church affairs and your attendance, whether it is in person or virtual.

Yours in Faith,

Board of Trustees

Susan Bleckman, Chair; Glenn McLaughlin, Secretary; Gloria O'Connor-Biron, Assistant Treasurer; Christopher Ward; Marilyn Thyng; Ex-Officio members: David Stasiak, Minister; Vicki Watson, Treasurer; Kevin Kenndey, Assistant Treasurer.