I was beginning to realize at this point in my short preaching career how vital it was to ensure that what was happening in church life was made explicit in every bit of literature as well as in the sermons. First in the literature - I see evidence in the service bulletins.
- we should book the date, Tuesday September 4th to take the decision about rebuilding on the church site.
-we should respond in preparation by praying with faith and vision and in our financial giving - our offering should be at least doubled every week and our covenanting should greatly increase.
- we are called to think, work, pray in these next weeks as never before.
Controversially, the following Sunday a new item was included in our church bulletin: WEEKLY OFFERING - we thank you for your gifts for the Lord's work last Sunday, which amounted to £71.92. I say controversially because it put finances in black and white figures for all to see. It put us on the spot. Some felt it rather undignified like putting washing out on the line! Perhaps dirty washing. And others resented the public spotlight.
I guess publishing church weekly offerings rarely happens today because people have standing orders and those who can covenant their gifts too. So it is very difficult to know exactly what is being given. After the September 4th meeting that confirmed the decision about rebuilding on the church site an official Building Fund was set up, so it's details were included too. Every week.
It is fascinating to revisit the impact of making our giving explicit. Three months later giving on October 21st. was General Fund £ 93. 07p and Building Fund £39. 20p. Definitely, the challenge was on but I also recognize how much more was to happen....seriously.