Advent and Stewardship (Rector’s Letter for 11/30)

Advent and Stewardship (Rector’s Letter for 11/30)

Dear Redeemer Family:

Yesterday was the first Sunday in Advent, launching us into the beginning of the new Church year, and having implications for our liturgical worship. We begin a new year in our lectionary readings, transitioning from year A to year B (p.717 in our Anglican Prayer Book). In our Sunday collective prayers, we return to the beginning of the church calendar with the Advent Collects (p.598). One more change to our Sunday worship will be the use of the Proper Preface for the season of Advent (p.152) during the Eucharistic prayer. During advent we are invited into a penitential season, and called to prepare our hearts for two things: for the celebration of Jesus’ first advent in the Incarnation; and for his future advent when he returns in Glory. Our Gospel reading from Mark 13:24-37 referred to Jesus’ future return, and declared Jesus’ call to his disciples to stay ready and to stay awake.

Advent has traditionally been the season when Redeemer leadership begins to prepare the budget for the new year, and when Redeemer members pledge their support. During this season of Stewardship, I ask you to prayerfully consider how you will participate with and support Redeemer through your 3-T’s: time, talents, and treasure. Last year we received fewer pledges from our members than in previous years, and this year looks to be just as, if not more, challenging regarding financial planning. Many of you, during our September study on Psalm 23, signed a commitment card declaring your membership with and support for Redeemer. I pray that many more will participate in this year’s Stewardship campaign pledging your participation and support through your 3-T’s. You will receive a link to our 2021 Stewardship brochure in next week’s email.

Regarding your pledge to Redeemer: please understand that without your pledges, the Vestry and Staff will be put in a position to guess at a budget. As you consider your giving, we ask that you pledge your best estimate for your giving for 2021. This is not a contract – we understand that things may happen that will either reduce your ability to give, or increase your ability to give. Say your prayers, pledge your best estimate, and then communicate with us if things change. Thank you for your faithful support in 2020. Your generosity has helped us avoid a large operational deficit during an unprecedented year. We are confident that the Lord will provide through you, his people, for the ministry in and through Redeemer in 2021.

Preparing for Jesus’ Advent,
Fr. Bill

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