Capital campaigns bless churches in numerous ways. People are allowed to use their talents, members are challenged in their faith-walk, and significant amounts of money are raised for good projects. A buzz of good feelings fills the church hallways for months following a campaign.
But the impact of a campaign is also measured on the individual level. All over your church, families are changed. For good. For a lifetime.
Several years ago our congregation went through a campaign. My daughters both attended church with their mom and me. They went to a local college and lived in the dorm, but we were delighted that we could still see them most Sundays in worship services.
One week before Commitment Sunday the girls came to me separately to discuss their gifts. “What should I pledge?” they asked me. Both girls were still on Daddy’s dime, but they had part-time jobs, and they felt a responsibility to give. We ran through their finances, made guesses about how much they would make over a three-year period, and then I left the decision with them.
Both girls filled out a pledge card the next Sunday. I learned of the amounts only when we tallied the numbers the afternoon of Commitment Sunday.
The younger daughter sat by us most Sundays for the following three years of college. I had the blessing of seeing her get out her checkbook every other week and write a check, probably for $10. Thinking about it years later, I still can come close to tears. It was a sweet moment.
My daughters are not perfect. But I know one thing. They are generous. Both of them consistently support the local church and other good works. And a capital campaign helped teach them this.
Campaigns are not just about raising money. I know.