Stewardship and Pledging
Care – Compassion – Community
Supporting and Sustaining UUCB
Watch for them and be inspired by them. Starting in February, each Sunday worship service will support our Stewardship Campaign by featuring video vignettes of church members speaking to their care for and commitment to UUCB. We hope fellow church members will influence our own pledge amount decision making by addressing three key questions:
- Why is UUCB important to you?
- What difference has UUCB made in your life?
- Why do you pledge to support UUCB?
The words “Care, Compassion, Community” and the image of our mosaic Tree of Life provide focus for this year’s campaign to support and sustain UUCB for the fiscal year July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022.
The Mosaic Tree of Life is an especially relevant symbol for us in this challenging time. It reflects how each of us helped create this beautiful mosaic, this UUCB Beloved Community, by sharing just one “leaf” of sharing potential selves. Out of many we created a canopy of love, caring, beauty and diversity. Just as the leaves are made up of fragments of china and keepsakes, the tree also symbolizes the compassion and care of our community, as we bring what matters to us and our imperfect, broken selves together for inspiration and healing.
This Year of the Pandemic has challenged our campaign as well as our lives and calls for creative and generous responses. The campaign has to be completely virtual; we cannot meet or communicate in person in our usual stewardship activities. Some members have lost jobs or otherwise experienced severe financial hardship, potentially compromising their capacity to pledge as before. Ironically, the stock market has been generous to others, who may choose to give much more than their usual pledge.
Government stimulus checks may be inadequate for some, but also encourage others more fortunate to share them with UUCB.
In addition to our usual expenses to providing facilities, programming and staffing, the church faces significant additional costs to make facilities safe for us to gather. Early estimates for viral protective and preventive items such as an advanced air filtration system may add additional costs this year of over $100,000.
Now, more than ever before, our personal valuing for UUCB and our thoughtful generosity will determine our ability to support and sustain our canopy of compassion in the next fiscal year.
Key Stewardship Campaign Dates
Feb. 20, 2021 Early Pledge Gathering
March 7 to 28 Stewardship Campaign
March 28 Celebration Sunday
Stewardship Committee: Michael Armstrong and Patrick Cullinane, Co-Chairs, Lynne Cahoon, Don Klose, Lenore Ralston, Deborah Schmidt, Helen Toy, Grace Ulp, and David Roberts, Board Liaison. Committee members welcome your thoughts at email@example.com.
Make My Pledge
If you are a new member or you’ve lost or simply not received a pledge packet, have no fear! You can make your pledge for the 2021-2022 church year right here on our website. Just click on the link below and it will take you to a simple, easy to complete online form:
In an effort to make things as easy as possible, there are lots of ways you can pay your pledge, including some new options:
- PayPal: Click on the Donate button:
Check the box for “Make this a monthly donation.”
- Cash: Mail to the church office or drop into either the offering plate or through the office door slot in an envelope. Indicate on the envelope your name and that it is for your pledge.
- Check: Mail to the church office or drop into either the offering plate or through the office door slot in an envelope. Don’t forget to write “pledge” in the subject line.
- Stock Transfer: Contact Tess O’Riva, Executive Director for more information.
- InFellowship: We also have a secure online payment system through our church database system called InFellowship:
Every pledge matters; no amount is too small or too large. Only you know how much you or your family can give. And if everyone gives what they can from deep within, UUCB will have more than enough to do the work we are called to do with one another and for our world. Thank you for your generous pledge!
What is a Pledge?
A pledge is a promise to contribute a specific amount of money to UUCB over a specific period of time (typically a church year, which runs from July 1 to June 30). Collectively, pledges paid by the UUCB church community constitute a little over 50% of the income received by the church to fund all church operations.
What is a Pledge Unit?
An individual or family who makes a pledge is referred to as a pledge unit.
Why and when are Pledges solicited?
UUCB operates under an annual operating budget prepared by church leadership and presented to and approved by the congregation at an annual meeting each May. A pledge drive is held in the spring to canvass the UUCB community to pledge their financial support for the upcoming church year. The results of the pledge drive enable church leadership to project the pledge income for the upcoming church year and to set the budget accordingly.
Are church members expected to make pledges?
UUCB Bylaws state that a requirement of membership is an annual “contribution of record.” This can be done by pledging and paying off the pledge over time. Contributions can also be made, when possible, at any point in the church year. Be sure to mark the contribution with your name and as a contribution to UUCB. If financial constraints preclude doing either of these things, please reach out to one of the ministers so that you may be excused from pledging.
Do I need to be a member of the church to make a pledge?
No; we hope everyone who calls the church their own will want to financially support the church and make a pledge.
What about changes to or questions about my pledge?
Yes; you can make a change to your pledge at any time. Just let Anne Greenwood know (firstname.lastname@example.org or 510-215-6620).
Does all of the money I give to the church count towards my pledge commitment?
All money specifically marked as a pledge payment will be applied towards your pledge commitment. Cash and unspecified checks placed into the offering plate and other contributions made that are not labeled as a pledge are considered general gifts. Please be sure to note “pledge payment” on the memo line of your check, or choose “pledge payment” when paying by credit card. If you pay in cash, please be sure to fill out a pew envelope (also available in the office to the left of the Office Administrator’s door) so it will be applied as a pledge payment to your account.
What happens to unpaid pledge commitments at the end of the church year?
Each church year ends on June 30. In early to mid-June, the church sends out a pledge status to each pledge unit, and adjusts pledges per the feedback received. If someone states that some/all of the amount owed will not be paid, that pledge is adjusted accordingly. If no feedback is received, future payments are applied to the unpaid pledge commitment until it is fully paid off.
2018 Tax law and Charitable Deductions
The new standard deduction may not enable itemized deductions for charitable contributions. Individuals age 70 1/2, who are doing required minimum distributions (RMD) from their IRAs, may be able to make a direct transfer charitable contribution (pledge) to the church from their RMD and lower their taxable adjusted gross income. For individuals not doing an RMD, a charitable donor advised trust or other options may be appropriate. Interested individuals should check with their tax preparer and/or legal counsel.