Pastor Randy Booth discusses three aspects of the Monroe congregation’s commitment to connectional giving: purpose, global church and technique. He writes, “The Purpose - Our local church raises money for our unified budget. It means that everybody donates so that everything can happen. We do not rely on just the parents to pay for children's ministries or just the choir to pay for worship. Everybody helps so that everything the leaders have prayed about and planned for can happen.

Although some people will designate their gifts for a specific event or ministry, this is rare. We have to trust one another. The results of some ministries take financial investment years before we see any fruit. The church does not operate as 'pay as you go,' using a model from retail or health care. We band together so to share the expense as well as the success.

Global Church - Our connectional church raises money for the same reason: so that all the ministries can happen. Now it's at a statewide, nationwide and worldwide level. These are levels our local church could not address alone. Although our local church may use only a few of the Conference ministries (e.g., camp), we don't have the perspective to limit any Conference ministries we don't use. Is our apportionment giving greater than the ministry we use? Yes. But our model at the local level is not asking members to pay for only their 'personal consumption of ministry' -- our church must be willing to do the same at the state, national and world levels.

The Technique - Finances are a spiritual discipline like prayer, communion, fasting, worship. Not every worship service or communion is the spiritual break through. God speaks to us in the discipline. Monroe UMC is committed to the Conference ministries it knows it benefits from as well as those we are unlikely to have a direct benefit from. Our mission field is larger than our zip code. We covenant to pay 9% of our apportionment each month. This means we usually make a smaller payment in December and apportionments are fully paid.”