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First Things, May 2014

May 2, 2014

Money.  Money.  Money.

First Church is currently raising $100,000 for the construction of the new child care center at the Caroline Severance Manor.

We’re also raising $25,000 to match a grant from the Spirit Level Foundation for a renovation of our courtyard.

Meanwhile, we’re in the midst of our Pledge Drive.  I hope you’ll give generously.

Yet, even with generous pledges, next year’s budget will include a deficit of over $100,000.  Our rents are down because so much of our rental space is used by the pre-school.  In the fall, the pre-school will move to the new child care center but only if… well, see above.

One of the clichés you hear about religious communities is that we endlessly beg for money.  I hope you don’t feel that way about First Church.  And I hope you see the value in the ways First Church spends our money.

But money is important.  I’m not embarrassed to ask for money.  And I’m not frightened by the need to raise large amounts of money.  When the need is real and the projects are inspiring, we have access to incredible resources.  The strategy is not to beg but to share a story and to connect with the emotions of a donor so they see how opening their purse or wallet will also open up their lives.  It feels good to give to projects that embody your values.  And it feels even better to give so generously that you feel deeply invested in the success of that project.

Some fundraisers say, “Give until it hurts.”  I always say, “Give until it feels good.”

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