I greet you, warmly, in the name of God, who made, loves and sustains us.
Dear friends, supporters and members of this community of St. John the Divine,
I write to you today about stewardship.
Stewardship is about how we use our time, energy, skills, and money – all that we have and are – wisely, as followers of Jesus, acknowledging that all we have is a gift from God.
This is much more expansive than just the Church, but of course includes it.
Coming to this time, I was reflecting on one of our mutual ministry goals for this past year: sustainability. This, we decided, referred primarily to our finances and the roof.
Upon reflection, I just want to celebrate, with you, and give thanks for the generosity of this community. I want you to know that as I write this, our deficit is only a fraction of what we budgeted at the beginning of the year. This is amazing, especially considering all that we have been able to raise for the roof – over $200,000 to date. This is incredible for a congregation that only had a half-time, ordained minister 3 years ago. We are doing it, my friends, we are doing it, with God’s help. Well done.
However, even more importantly, I want to acknowledge and celebrate the sustainability of spirit that this community has demonstrated. Together, you have continued to walk faithfully in the way of Jesus. You have trusted in God’s grace and love. You have been courageous, hopeful and loving beyond anything that I could have asked for or imagined.
From this place of gratitude, I invite you to make a pledge (or gift), of money, yes, but also of your time, your prayers, and your talents, to our shared life and ministry here at St. John the Divine.
I invite you to prayerfully and courageously fill out a pledge form, or make a gift, no matter how big or small, how much or little, not out of a place of fear, but rooted in hope, love, joy and gratitude, rooted in God.
As you make your pledge, remember how we responded as a community and supported our neighbours who lost their homes in the apartment fire at the beginning of the year. Remember how we have gathered and prayed in Whistler under the banner of St. Bernard’s. Remember how we have begun a Sunday School and a weekday tot time to love and serve families in our community. Remember how we have supported each other with prayer, and meal trains and visits. Remember our generous service to our community through Hilltop House, Community Christmas Care, the Squamish Multifaith, and beyond. Remember how together we baptized 7 beautiful children of God this year. Remember the music, and fellowship, and learning, we have shared…
As I fill out my own pledge card, this is what I will be holding in my mind and in my heart. I am grateful to serve with you at St. John’s, and I look forward to seeing what God has in store for us in 2023. Together, we will continue to flourish where we have been planted. We will continue to be salt and light and love in this place that God has called us to be the Church – Christ’s hands and feet and heart to and for this world.
Please bring in your pledge cards on or before November 27th to be blessed on the first Sunday of Advent!
Sincerely, your brother in Christ,
The Reverend Cameron Gutjahr