New Consecration Sunday Stewardship Program

The First Steps for Clergy

  1. Pray. Daily. For the Guest Leader, for everyone (who will be) on the team, for everyone on the vestry or in any other leadership position in your church, and for everyone in the parish.

  2. Be certain your wardens and vestry are on board.
    Much of the work of this program is accomplished by the lay leadership of your parish. Their commitment and support will be essential.

  3. Order the program manuals and cards
    All supplies may be ordered online from Cokesbury Publishing House at www.cokesbury.com or by calling Cokesbury at (800) 672-1789.

    • 3 copies of the Stewardship Program Manual with Guest Leader Guide and CD-ROM - one each for the Rector, the Team Chairperson, and the Guest Leader.
    • 5 additional copies of the Team Member Manual. You need a total of 6 - one for each team member except the chairperson - and one Team Member Manual was given to each parish group attending a Parish Leadership Conference.
    • Sufficient Estimate of Giving Cards for your size congregation. Have the cards shipped to your Guest Leader - not to the parish.

  4. Select a Guest Leader
    Select a clergy person or lay leader from outside your congregation whom you respect as a speaker. The Guest Leader is not a professional fund raiser. The Guest Leader will be speaking to members of your congregation on three occasions:

    1. Leading a Stewardship Team orientation meeting and dinner six weeks prior to Consecration Sunday
    2. Speaking at a leadership dinner meeting with the vestry, team members, other parish ministry leaders, and all their spouses one week before Consecration Sunday and
    3. Preaching at the worship service(s) on Consecration Sunday

    If you decide to trade pulpits as Guest Leader with another area rector, be certain to schedule your Consecration Sundays on different Sundays. You will need to be in your own parish on Consecration Sunday.

    Honoraria and travel expense reimbursement for the Guest Leader are at the discretion of the rector, wardens and vestry.

  5. Establish a program timeline with your Guest Leader
    Be certain that the dates for Consecration Sunday and all meetings with the Guest Leader are mutually available on your calendar, the guest leader's calendar, and the parish calendar.

  6. Select your Consecration Sunday Chairperson and six team members
    When selecting the six team members do not ask them to do a particular task. The Guest Leader will do this at the initial meeting. Do keep in mind, however, that the following responsibilities will be covered by the members of this team:

    • Consecration Sunday Celebration Luncheon Chairperson
    • Leadership Dinner Telephone Chairperson
    • Three lay speakers, each of whom makes an announcement and gives a personal witness talk about his or her personal experience and convictions about the spiritual significance and value of financial stewardship.
    • Church Treasurer or Financial Assistant who provides advance statistics on previous giving patterns and calculates results on Consecration Sunday

  7. Read the New Consecration Sunday Program Manual
    It's only 76 pages and it will give you an excellent overview - not only of the program but also why it is structured the way it is. Herb Miller has very specific reasons for why the procedure is designed as it is and why every shortcut or procedural deviation you may be tempted to make would diminish the final results of the program.

  8. Attend the Rector-Guest Leader Training when it is offered in your area
    We plan to offer a one-day training program for rectors and guest leaders on a regional basis. This will be an excellent opportunity to review the program in detail with an experienced Guest Leader. Dates and locations of these training opportunities will be publicized in the Diocesan Updates.

    If you do not currently receive the Diocesan Update, you can add your e-mail to the list on the Diocesan website homepage (accessed by clicking here) and typing your full name and e-mail address in the appropriate fields in the upper right corner of the page and then clicking the Submit button. You may also send an e-mail to the Diocesan Update Editor by clicking here. Be sure to include your full name in the e-mail message.
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