End of year need: $196,147
A couple of weeks ago we honored the life of Phil Laquey. If you ever met Phil, you knew he was one of the sharpest dressers around — much like Charlie Burgin — and had a smile that could charm a snake. During the memorial service, a family member read reflections from Phil’s son, who once asked his father how they could afford to give to the church that particular year. Phil responded, “Son, we cannot afford not to tithe.”
We are so close to hitting our budgeted amount for this year, with only $196,147 left to go. I am grateful for you choosing and believing, “we can’t afford not to tithe and give.” Giving is different for all institutions. Up until the mid-90s, giving to the church was a top priority, but as the world changed, so did this routine. The number of places you can give to or invest in is much greater. That’s one reason giving has changed in the church.
But if I am really honest, I believe the main reason is because the church failed to live up to its own teachings. Some churches told their members to love — but decided who was lovable; to bring peace — but not too much because that looks political; to open the table for all — but question who made the potato salad or only allow those who we want; to fight for justice and give space for all voices — but don’t preach about stuff that makes me uncomfortable.
As I speak to people in the church world, I constantly hear “the church is losing its credibility” or “how can the church teach us all these things, but then deny doing them itself or get mad when we decide to do justice and love mercy instead of just lip service?”
Today, I am grateful the congregation of Wilshire has helped change the stigma of the church through a message and actions that have always been there but have sometimes been overshadowed. I’m grateful for people giving not just their gifts but their hearts to help bring forth a world and kingdom that goes outside of ourselves and chooses to put peace in each other’s hands.
Here are a few logistical matters to keep in mind as you consider helping us close the year-end gap:
- The church office is closed this week, but you can drop checks into the secure black mailbox near the entrance from the south parking lot. Checks in the mailbox will be retrieved on Sunday morning, Dec. 31.
- Checks sent through the mail need to be postmarked by Dec. 29.
- Stock gifts will be received until Dec. 29. Email Lori Gooden for more information.
- Online gifts can be made before midnight on Sunday, Dec. 31.
I love you,