Your Mortgage Has Been Cancelled!
Just imagine if you got this message from your bank! “I have good news for you! We have canceled your mortgage. Your debt is now paid in full and you own your home free and clear!” At first you would be suspicious. But after discovering that it was not a scam… can you imagine the freedom it would bring? Could you find anything valuable to do with the money that normally goes to your monthly house payment?
That is a $50,000 question for your church. Our mortgage is more than $50,000 every month. We are so grateful for the facilities that this debt has provided and we and our whole community make good use of them. Still, can you imagine what freeing up $50,000 a month would do for our mission and ministry? I asked our staff and session what their DREAM would be if we could fund $600,000 more ministry projects in a budget year and following are some of their reflections.
- Bring Pastor Megan to full time
- A fully-funded youth ministry that does not need to rely on extra fund-raising events
- Support the Key Free Clinic and launch a Celebrate Recovery ministry on the Key Peninsula
- Call a Pastor of Youth and Young Families
- A non-traditional evening worship service
- Develop “micro-mission” communities built around affinities and passions as an outreach from our pew to our community
- A missionary resource center to better care for missionaries both on the field and on furlough
- Create a video ministry that captures, catalogues and makes available our preaching ministry via the web
- Partner with our denomination’s evangelistic outreach into the Muslim world
- Partner with our presbytery’s church-planting emphasis
Of course, these are dreams at this point, not promises. All of them may not happen. But everything we have ever launched at Chapel Hill began as a dream!
In the biblical Year of Jubilee as described in Leviticus 25, every fifty years, all debts were forgiven. A fresh start! I doubt that the bank will wipe out our mortgage debt, but we certainly have the resources within this church body to do so.
One woman, brand new to our church, recently sent me a $34,000 gift, a legacy from her mother, to apply to our mortgage. She hoped that it might inspire others to do the same. I know of several other families who share the same passion. In fact, the total initial commitments from just a handful of families is actually quite staggering. Would you like to know what it is? Well… come to church this Sunday, and you will find out. But I can tell you, it will take a huge chunk out of our debt.
On November 17, Jubilee Sunday, at 10:00 (our only service that morning) we are going to announce the final total of our Jubilee Debt Initiative. Some folks are giving cash gifts right now. Others are planning their gift to be completed by October, 2015, when our entire mortgage comes due.
Cyndi and I will do our part above and beyond our normal giving. Will you? Wouldn’t it be something if 100% of our congregation participated in this, no matter at what level? Beginning November 3, special envelopes will be available. Will you prayerfully consider a sacrificial gift now but no later than October, 2015?
Just imagine! No mortgage! Dream big!
Thanks for all you do for God’s Sweetheart Church!
P.S. Be sure and join us for worship Sunday… you will be excited to hear the preliminary debt reduction dollars that have already been promised by just a few families. Imagine what will happen when we all join in. And don’t forget Jubilee Sunday, November 17, one service only at 10:00am.