Cooler weather and leaves turning resplendent colors can mean only one thing: stewardship season. As you prayerfully discern your financial pledge for 2015, I wanted you to be aware of several dire consequences for refusing to support your community of faith.
Here are a few consequences for taking a miserly approach to giving:
1. The rationing of wafers at communion means that every other person at the rail receives a Necco wafer. You got skipped? Better luck next week.
2. Ushers are stingy with the bulletins. Thus you may find yourself having to share with the stranger in your pew. Egad!
3. The organ cuts out during the singing of the communion hymn leading to that awkward moment of bizarre theology and empty spiritual questioning when the congregation sings, "Let all mortal flesh keep silence, and with fear and trembling stand; ponder nothing…"
4. Since the priest's salary has been cut in half, he or she will only preach half a sermon (Wait, that's a lousy motivator…).
5. The flower guild only has enough money in the budget for dandelions.
6. The church can only afford for the sexton to clean half the church every week. So you may end up in that pew where the family with the two-year old triplets sat the week before. Which would explain the crushed Goldfish on the kneelers, sticky week-old grape juice on the pew, and that dirty diaper in the hymn rack.
7. There's only enough coffee after the service for the people who dash out the side entrance and race into the parish hall without shaking the priest's hand (and, yes, we know who you are).
8. With a lack of money to pay the oil bill, the baptismal font freezes over making winter baptisms impossible. Would you really want to deny a child entrance into the Church because you decided to spend more on your annual coffee budget (guilty as charged) than what you give to support your community of faith?
9. Not being able to afford matches means starting the New Fire at the Easter Vigil by rubbing two sticks together. This turns the service into a five-hour liturgy.
10. Since the water bill couldn't be paid, resulting in the town shutting off the water, the altar guild can't properly wash the chalices. Say hello to globs of lipstick being shoved in your face by the chalice bearer.
11. If the lights can’t stay on, the church must use more candles. When the acolyte knocks over the candelabra set up so the readers can find the lectern without breaking their necks, the church will burn down.
12. Yes, Joshua fought the battle of Jericho but if you don’t pledge, the walls of the church will “come a-tumblin’ down.”
So please be generous when that pledge card arrives in the mail. Otherwise the church will fall apart. Literally.