Most pastors and planters are trained theologically. We spend years learning how to exegete scripture, dissect culture, preach, teach, and counsel but we spend little to no time dealing with one of the most critical issues of church leadership, funding. While most of us didn't get into this because we have a love for reading P&L's, writing grants, building budgets, or asking for funds what we find is you can't have or build a church without attending to the finances of the mission. This section is designed to give you a working knowledge of fundraising, budgeting, and donor management. This section is a good start to learning the financial side of ministry, but it is just that, a good start. Begin praying for the leaders God will raise up to help you faithful manage the finances of the church plant.
Offering can be the most irrelevant time in a worship service. This is a dangerous thing, because for most churches it is the primary funding vehicle of church, and an incredible opportunity to disciple people in a biblical understanding of finances. A simple way to change the tone of offering is by sharing the what, how, and why of offering.
First, tell everyone WHAT you are doing. Most people who are disconnected from church don't realize that plate you are passing down the pew is for money, and by the time they get it it is too late. Start by letting people know what you are doing.
Second, tell people HOW they can be a part of this time of worship and offering. Can people give online, by text, or cash or check in the offering plate, bucket or box in the back? This is an important time to mention, the more option you have for people to give, the more people will give.
Finally, tell people WHY they are giving. Too often we take for granted that people know why we take an offering. This is your opportunity to disciple people on Christ centered giving, share the mission and vision of the church, share a story of impact, or share a need in the church. Most nonprofits would give anything for the opportunity to gather their entire donor base together to share the mission and stories of impact. We get this opportunity 52 weeks a year, are you taking full advantage of it?
Church planting is a unique scenario. One in which you need to find support, raise money, and at the same time build a church that will be able to one day sustain on its own. In this scenario it is important to remember that outside support is a gift from God, but it is not a long term financial strategy. Realize that outside support can make the books look black, when in reality you are operating in the red. As you a building the financial future of your church, build an 80/20 budget. That means you tithe 10% to the greater kingdom mission, save 10% as an emergency fund for your church, and operate on 80%. The more you learn to do this the more you will set the new church plant up for longterm sustainability.
Great resources and coaching can make a radical difference in the finances of your church. Some of these resources will have a cost, but the cost will more than pay for itself in the long run.
Giving rocket is a 12 module church financial coaching. They will cover everything from how to give an offering talk, set a yearly budget, and raise money for your church. While this coaching is a on a monthly fee, the fee will end up paying for itself. To check out this resource click here.