Our new Faith Formation Team called Grace & Gratitude will focus on year-round stewardship. The name Grace & Gratitude was chosen because stewardship encompasses so much more than the finances of the church. It includes:
♦ Grace is the freely given favor and love of God – which is elegant, beautiful and boundless.
♦ Gratitude is our appreciation for what we have and how we respond. ♦ Stewardship is taking care of things for someone else, for God, when we speak as Christians. As caretakers, we get the use of God’s stuff – our lives, our planet, our resources .
♦ We become Stewards of God’s Grace when we are baptized. We then belong to God. We try to reflect God’s grace in everything that we think, say and do.
♦ We are Stewards of the Story. God’s gospel story that comes to us in the Bible is written in our hearts and lives within us. The Good News is meant to be shared.
♦ God gave Adam and Eve dominion over the earth, dominion not ownership. And we are present day stewards of the part of Creation that surrounds us. We each make decisions every day that impact our Earth, and want the decisions to honor the incredible Creation and sustain it for future generations.
♦ We are Stewards of Talents. God has given each of us unique gifts and talents.
♦ We are Stewards of Time. God has entrusted each of us with an unknown number of days, but it is equal for all of us at 24 hours or 1440 minutes per day. We need to appreciate this daily gift and use it wisely. Each day that we live, we work and serve.
♦ We are Stewards of Money. God cares about what we do with 100% of our money – not just whatever portion we give the church.
We are Stewards of Stuff. We all have some stuff – it could be property, clothes, furniture, cars, computers, phones, or whatever.
♦ We are Stewards of Justice. We want our church to be a catalyst, convener, and bridge builder.
♦ We are Stewards of Local and Global Communities. Through our Mission Partners we learn how our church serves our neighbors both far and near.
Part of the work of the Grace & Gratitude team will be to come up with a way for all Journey members to prayerfully respond each Fall with an estimate of their next year’s financial support of the Journey Mission – an estimate of giving not a pledge. The folks who serve God’s mission by being leaders of Journey Lutheran Church need to know some numbers in order to plan a budget.
God comes down to us in love, entrusting an abundance of resources to our care. As disciples of Jesus, our goal is to live generous lives in response to God’s Love.
The team plans to grow in faith by studying the Bible and what it says about grace and gratitude. Pastor Mamy will continue to teach and preach about grace and about gratitude as the year goes by. There will be ongoing communication about Stewardship. The team will share stories of grace and gratitude in action at Journey. Faith-building events will be planned and these will hopefully bring members together to live out these grace and gratitude principles.