Not Your Parents’ Offering Plate: A New Vision of Financial Stewardship

by J. Clif Christopher. Abingdon Press, 2015.
Large not your parents offering plate

The founder of Horizons Stewardship Company, Clif Christopher, presents this highly readable invitation to congregations to reconsider how they do fundraising. This is not a book about tithing, the traditional biblical mandate on giving. It is about how to promote the practice of giving. Christopher argues that there has been a major cultural shift that now places congregations in direct competition with other non-profits for charitable funds. Taking a page from professional fundraisers, he recommends that the church refocus its efforts around a single theme: How congregants’ gifts have real meaning and impact. To support his assertions, Christopher sites the stories of congregations using good and bad communication techniques. Each chapter ends with discussion questions and action ideas. Worth the price of admission is the chapter titled, “The Top Eleven Things I Would Do Now”, a discussion of hard-won insights and recommended practices. A suggested reading list completes this resource. Clergy leaders, finance chairpersons, and finance committee members will benefit most from this practical guide.