November 17th, 2019
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
“By your perseverance you will secure your lives.”
Last year I introduced the idea of Tithing, and offered the Gloria Gatherings as an opportunity to understand the biblical and historical understanding of tithing and what it means for our lives. (If you weren’t able to attend one of the Gloria Gatherings, I encourage you to watch the video of it on our website.)
Since last year, I have noticed a greater effort in our parish to strive toward tithing, and for this I am very grateful.
I want to offer a few thoughts as a “refresher” on the topic of tithing.
Scripture says: “Give to the Most High as he has given to you, generously, according to your means” (Sirach 35:12). Tithing is based off of this scripture passage. Tithing is not about giving a particular dollar amount every year, nor is it about expecting everyone to give the same amount. Tithing refers to each person giving back to God according to their own means. Traditionally, this is 10% of our annual income.
The Bible talks a lot about tithing. In Genesis, we hear Abraham saying to God: “Of everything you give me, I will return a tenth part to you without fail” (Genesis 28:22). God also promises to bless those who give to him. We hear the Lord say through the prophet Malachi: “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, and see if I do not open the floodgates of heaven for you, and blessing without measure!” (Malachi 3:10).
One of the best places to start as we consider tithing to church is to find out just how much of our income we have given over the past year. Take your annual church giving, divide it by your annual income, and move the decimal point right two places. This is the percentage of your income you have given to the church that year. (See the flyer in today’s bulletin.)
I recognize that donating 10% of your income may sound intimidating or impossible. I don’t expect anyone to be able to give 10% immediately, but I do want to encourage you to take a step closer to that goal. Could you consider increasing your annual giving by 1% this coming year?
For example, let’s say a household income is $70,000, and they donated $1,000 to church last year (i.e. $19 per week). While one thousand dollars sounds like a lot, it actually ends up being just 1.4% of their income. If this family were able to increase their giving by 1% this coming year, for a total of 2.4%, that would equal $1,680, or $32 per week. Would you be willing to increase your giving by 1% this year?
If you would find it easier to give electronically, I invite you to visit our website for more information about setting up recurring automatic giving.
Also, kid’s envelopes are available in the back of church if your child would like a box!
Thank you all for your generous financial commitment to Immaculate Conception.
You are in my daily prayers.
God bless you,