Letter from Pastor Bruce: What’s Next with Our Gifts and Giving

Hello Wesley UMC,

Wesley UMC is living into our mission to serve Christ, community and creation in new and creative ways. You may remember that last year we received a generous gift from the estate of Stanley Johnson. The Church Council has spent much time in prayer and thought about how to best make use of this generous gift. We have designated a portion of this money to be used by the Trustees. Last year they were able to complete some much needed work in the kitchen and this summer we will be able to complete new pavement of the parking lot. We also intend to set apart a portion of this gift for new ministry possibilities with new ministry interns (more about this later).

In addition, we want to be generous with this gift. It is the intent of the church council to give away at least a tithe (10%) of the Johnson gift to other ministries or non-profit agencies in our community. We are beginning an application process now for potential recipients of this gift. Applications will be due October 1st. A small group of leaders from the church council will review the applications and propose a few community organizations that we will be able to grant with a generous gift.

It is our intent to support a few organizations with a significant gift rather than many with a small gift. We will not be able to support every good project.  Some non-profit groups that you work with and care about may not receive a gift. We hope to have some hard decisions to make.

In the fall we will hold a celebration for our ability to be generous with this gift. I anticipate we will also build the relationship of Wesley UMC with agencies that are making a difference in our community. Please join the church council and me in prayer as we consider how to best be generous with this financial gift. If you are part of an organization that you would like to have considered, please ask the director or board chair of that group to send us an application.

It is a joy to be able to give. I wonder, how else might we live into our mission with generosity? In response to the never failing love of our Lord Jesus Christ, may we continue to build upon our relationship with God and neighbors with generous hearts.

Grace and Peace,

Rev. Bruce Smith

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