"Living is giving. We live life best as we give our strengths, gifts, and competencies . . . We are called to serve, not survive. Our giving makes a difference in our families, our congregation, our community, and our faith." —adapted from Kennon L. Callahan
At UUFR, we recognize one of the truths of all the world’s great religions: that generosity is central to a healthy spiritual life. We believe in the ancient practice of giving as a spiritual exercise, used like any other meditation practice to deepen and strengthen the soul. Members of this church who give generously—to this church and elsewhere—tell of the joy and empowerment they feel when they live out of a sense of abundance. Our faith calls us to welcome the stranger at the door, to share our resources with others in need, and to care for our planet. This is the meaning of stewardship. Each of us comes to UUFR bearing gifts of time, talent, and financial resources. Generously sharing our resources with our Fellowship reflects a commitment to participating in and growing our vibrant community.
Each UU congregation is self-sustaining. There is no centralized authority that supports us financially, nor does it tell us what to do or what to believe.
Our current budget is primarily met through the generosity of all who participate in our faith community. Since each congregant is at a different place financially, we ask everyone to seriously consider the idea of the "liberal tithe": five percent of their income to be designated for the church, and five percent earmarked for other worthwhile causes.
For many congregants, five percent for the church is not a problem, and they can easily reach or surpass this level of commitment. For others, such a goal may be difficult. If so, we ask them to start their initial pledge at three percent, and increase that amount by a half percent each year, until five percent is comfortably reached. If you can afford to pledge more, you will help others who are unable to do so.
The right of membership is accompanied by the responsibility of making a pledge to support the church financially. A pledge is a planned annual contribution. Monthly pledge payments are preferred.
When you join the church as a new member, you will be asked to make your first financial pledge to the church. The pledge you make upon joining us is for the remainder of the fiscal year, ending June 30.
Then each spring, during our Annual Generosity Campaign, you will be asked, along with all other congregants, to make a financial pledge for the new fiscal year, beginning July 1.
It takes an annual per member pledge of more than $1100 to sustain the church. Think about this: what would you expect to pay for membership in a health club, or to dine in a good restaurant? Certainly, UUFR exercises your mind, and feeds your soul and spirit. How much would you pay for such a feast? What is it worth to you? These are questions of spirit and generosity, and we ask you to carefully consider this important aspect of membership.
There are several ways of paying your pledge or making a contribution to UUFR. Many pay their pledges by check or cash on Sunday morning. You can also use a credit card; please contact the UUFR office regarding this option (919-781-7635). In addition, you can use PayBill, a free check writing service available from your bank, or you can transfer securities. Capital gains taxes do not apply when securities are donated to a qualifying nonprofit. Please contact your broker for information on transferring securities.
Minister's Discretionary Fund -- Gifts to this fund help meet emergency needs at the discretion of the minister. Funds are replenished through voluntary contributions.
Fourth and Fifth Sunday Special Collections --Our congregation supports a wide variety of community and social action projects. For information on Fourth and Fifth Sunday special collections, see Social Action in Our Congregation.
Youth Religious Education (YRE) -- Our Youth Religious Education program is the largest in the state. Gifts support maintenance and improvements to the YRE program that are not covered by the regular budget.
UUFR Endowment Fund – The UUFR Endowment Fund is UUFR's savings account for the future. The investment income from the Fund may be used to finance UUFR facilities, enrich our programs, and help meet needs that are outside the operating expenses of UUFR. You can contribute to the Endowment Fund in a variety of ways, including in wills, bequests, or direct gifts. For more information, call the UUFR office at 919-781-7635.