Frequently Asked Questions About Giving
What is a pledge?
A pledge is your commitment to make a financial gift that supports the mission of Saint Mark’s Church. Pledging is a response to God’s call to each of us, and a response to the abundance of God’s blessing in our own lives: it is a statement of thanksgiving.
Why do we need annual pledges?
Annual pledges supports all that we do and are at Saint Mark’s Church — from paying clergy to supporting our outreach ministries to paying the electric bill. In order to know what we can do each year, we need to receive pledge commitments on which to develop an annual budget.
What happens to the money I give?
Your pledge supports everything that happens at Saint Mark’s— worship, pastoral care, Christian Formation programs, our social-outreach ministries, maintenance of our building, and more. In a addition, part of every pledge supports the Episcopal Diocese of Sothern Ohio and national church (ECUSA) and its ministry around the world.
Who should make a pledge?
Anyone and everyone! In particular, YOU can make a pledge to support Saint Mark’s and Christ’s ministry through this community!
Can’t we just rely on the endowment?
Saint Mark’s has a very modest endowment, and receives only 2% of its operating budget from the endowment. That means that just everything it takes to support our many ministries comes from contributions such as yours every year.
How much should I pledge?
We believe that our standard of giving should reflect our standard of living. We ask each parishioner to consider making a pledge that is both responsible and significant based on his or her financial situation. A tithe (10% of your income) has long been held as the standard of Christian giving. For most it is a goal to be reached through incremental increases each year. At Saint Mark’s, every pledge regardless of size makes a valued contribution to our mission and ministry.
If you would like to make a proportional pledge or tithe, or begin working toward one, this Proportional Giving Chart may help.
When should I pledge?
We ask everyone to make a pledge on Pledge Sunday InGathering (this year, November 16) by bringing a pledge card to church, mailing it, or making a pledge online, as this helps us establish our budget for the upcoming year. However, pledges are welcome throughout the year. To learn more about stewardship throughout the year click here.
Can I pay in installments?
Yes! A pledge is simply a promise to pay. You may fulfill your pledge in as many payments as you wish throughout the year. Usually pledges are to be fulfilled on a calendar year basis, beginning January 1.
Can I pay with a credit card?
You may pay your pledge with your Visa or MasterCard, although we ask that you consider adding an extra percentage to cover bank processing and transaction fees charged to Saint Mark’s depending on the type of card used. Learn more about the different types of Online Contributions. Click HERE to make a credit card payment, or contact the parish office at 61 486 9452 to learn more about direct funds transfer.
Can I pay by a gift of stock, a donor-advised fund, or through other means?
Yes, you may pay by a gift of stock or financial securities, or through a donor-advised fund. To make a gift of stock in payment of a pledge, or for all other questions, contact the parish treasurer, Dot Yeager, here. We welcome all kinds of pledge payments.
What happens if I can’t give as much as I pledged?
While it’s a commitment to your church and your fellow parishioners, your pledge is not legally binding. We all understand when circumstances change. It is helpful if you notify the church you need to change your pledge. If you’re blessed with unexpected extra income, you’re always welcome to increase your pledge as well!
Who knows how much I pledge?
Saint Mark’s stewardship staff and finance office keep all pledges strictly confidential. A small group of church leaders who volunteer in the finance office and the Rector—may in some cases also have access to pledge records for specific purposes.