What Is Stewardship?
God calls us individually and intends for each one of us to play a unique role in carrying out the divine plan. The challenge, then, is to understand our role-- our vocation-- and to respond generously to this call from God.
Stewardship is a vocation to discipleship. The Mature disciple makes a firm decision to be a follower of Christ and to imitate His way of life no matter what the cost. Disciples practice Stewardship as a way of life.
TO FOLLOW FAITHFULLY
We are called to be faithful and loyal to the teachings of the Church- to practice our faith consistently and sacramentally. Following faithfully defines itself in our lives, family lives, attendance at and participation in the life of the parish Church.
Stewardship is a lifestyle, a life of total accountablity and responsibility, acknowledging God as the Creator and Owner of all. Christian Stewards see themselves as the caretakers of all God's gifts. Gratitude for these many gifts is expressed in prayer, worship, offering and action. Stewardship is a way of thanking God for all our blessings by returning to God a portion of the many gifts that we have been given. It involves the intentional, planned and proportionate giving of all we have.
God has given each of us certain things, and we are responsible for caring for them and are accountable for what we do with them. Stewardship rejects the notion that we must "have it all" and instead demonstrate the value of giving in love, in service and in justice. GOod stewards have an "attitude of gratitude."
As with all things pertaining to the Gospel, Stewardship is fundamentally the work of the Spirit in our lives. When we accept our lives as sheer gifts, the Spirit can use us as apt instruments for spreading the Gospel.
What are your gifts from God?
When the time comes for us to consider sharing our special gifts of time and talent, what if we are not sure of what they are?
Here are a few questions to ask yourself when considering the stewardship opportunities which are best suited for your special gifts. Think about it, pray about it, take a leap of faith and fill out one of the following sheets.
Evangelization – Are you…
Generally, a good communicator? Feeling drawn to build discipleship? Compelled to help others understand the Jesus story?
Shepherding – Do You…
Have a knack for uniting people? Encourage a team approach to problems? Influence others to get involved?
Teaching – Do You…
Set high standards of excellence? Enjoy presenting what you have learned? Have patience and understanding?
Encouraging – Do You…
Always try to encourage others? Have a strong sense of concern? Enjoy using your skills to communicate?
Mercy – Are You…
Concerned for the individual? Sympathizing and empathetic? Often doing what no one else likes to do?
Serving – Are You Often…
Found working behind the scenes? Helping others without really thinking about it? Motivated to “do whatever needs to be done?”
Administration – Do you…
Have a strong sense of organization? Focus on team activities vs. individual? Have a knack for delegating / following up?
Creative – Can You …
Think outside the box? Talk to God more effectively without speaking? Deliver a message through song or instrument? Think of ways to communicate other than speaking?