Building to Finish, This Year and in Years to Come
For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him, saying, “This man began to build and was not able to finish.” — Luke 14:28-30
While we often take our surroundings for granted, at this festive time of year we certainly relish the beauty of our Church sanctuary, especially as we have celebrated the birth of Jesus Christ. And, while it’s not necessarily a part of a Christmas carol or story, the refrain that says, “Finish what you’ve begun!” is actually a fitting one as we experience our beautifully-decorated Church building and campus.
It must have seemed almost impossible at the onset of the Great Depression for our Church founders to commit to building this remarkable edifice we so lovingly call our Church home. Their vision, diligence and fortitude helped them calculate what it would take, lay the foundation and build what stands today. And, we can all imagine that, one hundred years from today, the faithful will continue to gather at our Church for worship, fellowship and renewal. Light will still stream through our beautiful stained glass windows, a heavenly choir will raise their voices in song and people of all ages will hear wisdom and inspiration from the clergy as they whisper their prayers by candlelight.
Wouldn’t it be delightful if there were a way to assure light will shine through the windows, to know the choir will have glorious music to accompany their songs and to have confidence in the strength and integrity of the building that houses our gatherings and celebrations?
In fact, that’s the gift the First Methodist Church of Fort Worth founders, early donors, current board and dedicated current contributors wrapped up just for us! While those who gather 100 years hence may remember only a few of names from today, those who are recalled perhaps will be known because they created a “giving presence” in our beautiful sanctuary. Such a presence is enabled by gifts to this Foundation, because Foundation gifts themselves are never depleted. That’s right: imagine that man in Luke 14 having a guarantor, what in the theatre is called an “angel,” someone who promises to underwrite costs and help him be able to finish, not just this year, but for years to come. That’s why our Foundation exists.
Every year, income generated by Foundation donations helps our church grow and serve its members and our community without touching the original contribution amounts. Lasting gifts to the Foundation come in the from a variety of sources, like legacy gifts from a will or estate, a family trust, one-time contributions or gifts from appreciated stock.
Foundation gifts are for only one recipient: FUMC! First United Methodist Church of Fort Worth continually receives Foundation support because funds keep on giving long after the Christmas decorations have been put away and the toys need new batteries.
So as you’re getting ready for the end of year financial planning, perhaps there’s a way to celebrate the holidays and consider tax-advantaged 2014 Foundation contributions, too. Why not lay a foundation that will go on forever? Gifts to the Foundation help FUMC on an ongoing basis because they remain intact in perpetuity to support our Church. Please contact Sid Johnston at 817.339.5072 or Lisa Tucker at 817.339.5089 for additional information.
We are blessed to be a part of this Foundation and this Church as we focus on the future of our spiritual home. To all, a very Happy New Year!