We often refer to the Church as a "ship of faith." I'm told when the St. Luke's sanctuary was built in 1965, some referred to it as "The Ark."
A sailing ship is an apt metaphor for the Church, because it reminds us that our forward movement is dependent both on God's grace and our commitment.
Whereas God's grace is ever-present and always active, our commitment (i.e. faith) must be renewed regularly. Thus, we can say "God's grace is always blowing, yet we must raise our sail."
For those of you who are new to St. Luke’s or new to church giving, St. Luke’s ministries are supported by parishioner’s financial gifts and tithes throughout the year. Every year in October, St. Luke’s has a Pledge Campaign to seek pledges from parishioners for the following year‘s budget. From October 8th through November 5, we as a community of faith will be engaged in raising our sail by pledging to fund the 2018 calendar year budget.
Several years ago, the St. Luke's Vestry and I committed to drawing upon and leveraging financial resources (such as various bequest funds and our investment account) to build up staffing so that St. Luke's could realize its greatest potential. These resources represented gifts from the past. This money has been used and the funds are mostly exhausted.
Therefore, this year our congregation will be invited to take full responsibility for funding the entire operating budget. In other words, we all will need to lend a hand to raise the sail. Of course, some can give more, some less.
The point is that this is a realizable goal.
Whether you are a longtime member, a newcomer, or somewhere in between....
Whether you are a devotee of sacred music and worship; committed to children's and youth ministries; focused on open-minded inquiry and learning from tradition; interested in reaching out to the larger Fort Collins and CSU communities; wanting to serve the marginalized and homeless....
Whether you are just beginning to find your way into a larger life in Christ Jesus....
No matter where you are at St. Luke's, please prayerfully consider lending a hand to raise our sail all the way, to allow God's grace to carry us forward, together, into realizing our greatest potential as St. Luke's Episcopal Church.
Yours in Christ,
Fr. Lupton Abshire+
On behalf of the St. Luke's 2017 Fall Pledge Campaign Committee