In January you ought to be sending out giving statements to each person who financially contributed to the work of the Lord through your church over the past year. In this post I want to share the kind of letter I write and enclose along with the actual giving statement. My hope is that you’ll be able to use this as a guide to help you in writing your own end-of-year giving letter.
Dear New Day Church Family Member,
Enclosed you will find your 2014 End-of-Year Giving Statement. Because we are a church, all your contributions are tax-deductible. Thank you for your generous support of New Day Church and its mission: to make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). Here’s just a sampling of what your contributions helped make possible in 2014:
- 280 salvations!!! (a 60% increase over last year’s 175)
- 55 water baptisms!!! (an 83% increase over last year’s 30)
- 601 total average attendance (a 26% increase over last year’s 477)
- Jeremy Paine & Tracey Jarvis going from part-time to full-time to help with all the new work created by all this growth!!!
- $72,000 given to missions!!!
- Over $43,000 raised in our special annual Christmas Offering!!! (a 115% increase over last year’s $20,000)
Thank you for investing in God’s work through our church. What an amazing return on investment we’ve had this year! Thanks for helping make this possible through your giving! I pray God blesses you for partnering with him financially to see more people come to know Jesus.
The best is yet AHEAD so let’s trust God together for another great year of ministry in 2015! If you have any questions about the details of your statement, please contact our Executive Pastor, Andrew Charko, at (413) 241-3070 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
God bless you,
New Day Church
p.s. Don’t miss our new teaching series Love Story starting Sunday February 1st
Now let me share a couple do’s and don’ts:
- Do highlight your victories (i.e. If the number of salvations went up, include a comparison of what happened this year with what happened last year. This will motivate your people.)
- Don’t highlight your defeats (i.e. If the number of salvations went down, don’t include a comparison of the previous year. This would de-motivate your people. Just write out how many got saved and celebrate that number.)
- Do feel free to highlight anything you consider a win for God’s kingdom over the past year (not just the things I’ve mentioned in my letter). If you’re having trouble thinking of things to share, get our staff and/or key volunteers together and ask for input. Ask them: Where did we win last year? What are you celebrating that God in our church last year?
- Don’t think you have to highlight the same things each year. You highlight whatever victories you had over the past year. Where you have victories will change from year to year so don’t feel the pressure to necessarily report on the same things year after year.
- Do connect the dots. Make sure people understand that there is a direct connection between their giving and God’s work being done on the earth.
- Don’t forget to say thank you. This is the whole purpose of the letter!
- Do make mention of the future to inspire continued giving in the upcoming year.
- Don’t forget to enclose their giving statement. Make sure the first thing they see when they open the envelope is your giving letter, not the giving statement. But make sure that after reading your letter there’s an actual giving statement enclosed.
- Do incorporate volunteers in the process. At New Day we send out mid-year and end-of-year giving statements and we have volunteers that come out to the church office to help print, fold, stuff and address each envelope.
- Don’t make the letter too long. I recommend you keep it to no more than one page. Make sure you are sharing the wins all year long and in your mid-year giving letter so you won’t feel the pressure to report on everything that’s happened through the year.
- Do take advantage of the opportunity the mailer provides to advertise your next teaching series. Make sure you stick something in the envelope that advertises whatever series your teaching on next. You’re already paying for the mailer so you might as well get the most out of it!