Last week I met with the Budget Committee as part of their annual planning process. Members of the FUMCFW Finance Committee are encouraged to participate in budget planning and usually meet six or more times to cover all the details. Church staff from some departments have individual meetings with the committee to discuss their projected expenses and to share their vision with the committee. My conversation with this committee involved estimating our 2016 church income. We use multiple methods to estimate income: completed pledge cards and “reliable gifts” (members who don’t complete a pledge card but have a giving history or standing credit card authorization). It is so important to all of our ministries that we have a reliable estimate of giving so they can make solid plans for their program/ministry areas. Following this series of budget planning meetings with staff members, the Budget Committee then submits a proposed budget to the Finance Committee at its March meeting. Final approval of the church’s annual budget happens at the April Church Council meeting. This week I wanted to lift up this very dedicated and hardworking committee that cares so deeply about our church and its finances. Learning more about the work of this committee has been fascinating to me, and if you have any questions, comments, or thoughts about how our church plans and approves its annual operating budget, please contact me — I would be delighted to tell you more!
Director of Stewardship