Bishop Ward expresses gratitude for the gifts each church shares through apportionments. Your generosity supports more than 91% of the 2015 mission and ministry of the NCCUMC.
I greet you in the name of Jesus Christ, and I offer you the heartfelt thanks of United Methodist people for your partnership in the ministry we share. You continue to be generous in offering your financial resources, so that the ministries of our annual conference will be supported and strengthened and extended out into the world.
In 2014, the Conference budget was supported at a level of 91%. That is a wonderful, wonderful expression of trust, love, and abundant compassion. Together, we are extending the life of Christ out into the world, sharing the grace which we have received, with others. The word “apportionment” which we use for each share which churches remit, actually has biblical roots. In the Old Testament, lands were apportioned to the tribes of Israel. In the New Testament, in some versions of the Bible, the Holy Spirit is described as “apportioning” gifts among all God’s people. The word means to distribute, and we give thanks that God has distributed among us gifts – that the grace of God is rich upon us, that our hearts are full of the love of Christ. So we use this biblical word, this word that is deep in our heritage, to express our shared life and commitment.
I thank you as we move forward in this new year, 2015, for all that you are doing, and will do. The offerings that you give through your local church are a great, great gift. Thank you for the ways in which you are stretching to grow in generosity. We look forward to a year of abundance together. Thanks be to God, the giver of every good gift.