Your Church Budget – and Home Mission
Who prepares your church budget?
Who discusses how best to serve God’s purposes in the allocation of funds?
Who decides what to give to Home Mission each year?
Although we recommend that each church gives at least 5% of general income to Home Mission, (to support Specialist Teams, Associations, and Home Mission grants), this decision finally rests with each church.
Therefore the number of grants our network is able to award each year is very much in the hands of those of you who help plan church budgets – and those of you who approve them at church members’ meetings.
The good news is that WEBA churches gave more in the first half of 2016 than they did in the first half of 2015. We thank God for his amazing provision, and the churches for their decision making!
As decision makers it’s important that you’re aware of what these grants, and also the ongoing support of Regional Ministry staff, is achieving around this region – so here’s a quick snapshot of some of the WEBA situations that you are currently supporting:
Pill Baptist Church could easily have taken the decision to close in the middle of 2015. Since then, a Home Mission grant has enabled Jon Thurlow to give one day per week to redeveloping and re-envisioning the church, which is now expressed in a weekly Sunday gathering in a Sheltered Housing complex, a monthly cafe church, and Lyfe groups to develop discipleship.
Stonehouse Baptist Church is on the move – the two growing congregations are moving from the original church building and a community centre to meet on one site in a local secondary school. A grant from Home Mission is enabling Anne Dunn, who led the church through a time of change and growth while she was a minister in training, to continue as its minister through these exciting times.
At the Cairn, in Knowle West, South Bristol, Phil and Alice Lawrence are continuing to provide an established presence on this estate where so many mission initiatives come and go. They’re developing initiatives such as Phil’s guitar club.
Alisdair Longwill is giving one day per week to the missional community in Bussage, Stroud. As with many of these situations, there’s a complex web of developing relationships through the local community cafe and food bank, which have already led to a small weekly Bible study.
We’ll continue to bring you updates on all these situations and others throughout the year. Each one is small, and in some ways fragile, but each represents a powerful call to share the good news of Jesus in a particular part of this region. Please pray for each of these individuals and the communities they work with, and remember these stories when you meet to consider, draw up, and approve your 2017 church budget.