The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod defines stewardship as, “the free and joyous activity of the child of God, and God’s family, the church, in managing all of life and life’s resources for God’s purpose.”
At St. John’s, we take the above definition regarding stewardship seriously. Stewardship is much more than just turning in an offering envelope when you attend worship. In fact, we have a phrase at St. John’s we use when talking about stewardship: Stewardship is Discipleship and Discipleship is Stewardship. You cannot have one without the other. As you live out a life as a disciple, someone who is called by and follows Christ, your actions and thoughts are in line with stewardship.
However, life is hard, because sin is in the world. It is hard to “manage all of life and life’s resources for God’s purpose.” In fact, some may ask, what does this even mean? Are you living within your means or spending constantly with no budget to keep it in check? Have you created a will for yourself/spouse/family, or is that something you are going to let the courts decide? What about when you are experiencing a financial crisis...who do you turn to? How to navigate the road ahead? These are great questions to wrestle with because this begins to help you understand how large this stewardship conversation really is.
Estate Planning: Helping members go through the Lifetime Plan for Stewardship process, in partnership with the St. John’s West Bend Foundation. We engage in conversations to help plan and establish a Christian Will/Trust, legal guardians, power of attorney, Family Blessing/Preamble, etc. These conversations help to prepare you when you sit down and meet with an attorney to now have your thoughts and wishes legalized.
Financial Crisis Intervention: Trained staff and volunteers of St. John’s work with families to evaluate current financial situation and identify practical way to manage God’s resources, i.e; establish a budget, connect to other St. John’s ministries, refer to community resources, etc. We also have a confidential “Care and Share” fund which has been established to help members with emergency needs. All conversations are confidential.
Financial Education/Financial Peace University: Trained staff and volunteers hold individual meetings and host educational opportunities to assist in managing the resources God has entrusted to us.
Food Pantry: St. John’s maintains a small non-perishable food pantry to help both members and non-members in crisis. We also support the Full Shelf Food Pantry here in West Bend, by providing written referrals.
Click Here to read and receive more resources from the LCMS Stewardship Ministry Office.
If you are interested in talking about one of the stewardship ministries above or just have some general questions, you are encouraged to speak with Pastor Jeff Hesse at 262-334-4901 or by email using the Contact Form