Stewardship (Giving)

What is Stewardship?

Stewardship is a freewill giving of your time, talent, and treasure for the building up of God's Kingdom here on Earth.  It is an act of faith and an expression of gratitude. It is what you do when you realize that your life, your work, your abilities and skill, the people and the places you love are  all gifts from the God who created you. 

Stewardship is more than just giving. It encompasses the broad concept of assuming the responsibility of caring for the gifts that God has given us. In the context of our congregation at St. James, we believe this can take the form of getting to know and looking after each other, being actively involved in community, and reaching out beyond our walls. 

If you regularly attend, you are probably already giving some of your time and talents in service to God, but are you giving a portion of your income? It’s never easy to promise a portion of your living for God’s purposes, to let go of control of what you earn. But that very difficulty points to the importance of "stewardship" on the journey of faith. It’s an opportunity to grow, to learn to give as God has given, freely and generously. 

We have a traditional annual fall pledge campaign, when St. James members are asked to make a pledge in order to support the work we do for the coming year. However, you may make a pledge at any time. The pledge dollars you give will help support the work of Saint James Episcopal Church, which relies solely on the gifts of individuals for its life and ministry.

How will my gifts be used? 

Gifts support St. James’s operating fund which is used in all areas of St. James’s life, including worship and music, outreach, education, global justice ministries, and community life.

How much should I pledge? 

Christian stewardship is not so much about fundraising as it is about expressing thanksgiving and growing in generosity. It is about a growing realization that all we have is a gift from God. Ten percent is the biblical tithe. We encourage you to prayerfully consider what proportion of your resources you will give to God’s work on earth and then decide how your support of St. James fits into that plan. 

We ask that you give an amount that reflects St. James’s role in your spiritual journey.

How should I make my gift? 

You may write checks to "St. James Episcopal Church" and place them in the collection plate at a worship service. In order for your check to be credited toward your pledge, you must note ‘Pledged Giving’ on the memo line. If the check is not clearly designated to a specified purpose in the memo portion, it will go to offering. Pledge envelopes are not required, but they are available on request by contacting Kathy McCrary at (423) 638-6583. For gifts of stock and securities, please contact Doug Temple, Treasurer at (423) 638-6583

Will I receive an acknowledgement? 

You will receive an acknowledgement letter within a few weeks of your initial gift or pledge, but not for weekly plate gifts or pledge payments. We try to send out quarterly statements to assist you with honoring your commitment to support St. James. In January, you will receive a summary of all gifts you made between January 1 and December 31 for your tax purposes. All gifts to St. James are tax deductible.

Estate Planning 

You can help the ministries of Saint James by remembering us in your will. You may do so by using the following wording: 

“I hereby give, devise and bequeath to Saint James Episcopal Church, a not-for-profit corporation, with the present address of 107 West Church Street, Greeneville, TN 37745-3803 and its successor, the greater of $__________, or __________ percentage of my gross estate, to be used in such manner as determined by its trustees.”

See more here on About Death & Dying and planning for the end of life.

A Prayer for the right use of God's Gifts

O Lord, you have taught us that you will require much from those to whom much is given: Grant that we whom you have called to so goodly a heritage at St. James Episcopal Church may share more abundantly with others what we so richly enjoy, and in serving them may know the glory of serving you. Amen.