Stewardship Committee

June 23, 2019

Little River UCC SummerFest 2019

The Stewardship Committee is excited to announce Little River UCC’s first-ever SummerFest on Saturday, July 27 from 9am to 2pm! Details are currently being finalized, but the event will include:

  • Rummage Sale

  • Games and Prizes for the kids

  • Craft Vendors

  • Food

  • Music

We are accepting donations for the rummage sale immediately! Items that typically sell well include gently used clothing, tools, small furniture, exercise equipment (no large items: treadmills, etc.), baby items, shoes, handbags, jewelry, games, toys and bicycles.

Items can be brought to the church beginning this Sunday, June 16 and each subsequent SUNDAY through July 21 and be left in the Conference Room. If you need to drop off at another time, please contact the office at office@lrucc.org to make arrangements.

Watch for more information on how you can volunteer, such as: set up, staffing the event, and clean up; providing bake sale and other food donations; playing live music; or selling your craft/ small business items. You will not want to miss this event!

Email doreenmanchester314@gmail.com with questions or if you just can't wait to volunteer. Email office@lrucc.org if you need to drop-off items during the week.

June 16, 2019

Unfunded Priorities - Anonymous Donor

In response to the recent appeal to support Little River’s unfunded priorities, an anonymous donor has graciously offered to match – dollar for dollar, up to $1,000 – all gifts received from June 1 through July 31. If you are able to give above and beyond your current pledge, please submit your gift in the offering plate, notating “Unfunded Priorities” in the memo line or on the envelope. You may also contact the church office at office@lrucc.org.

June 3, 2019

The Stewardship Committee met on June 3 at the church. We discussed plans for Little River UCC’s first-ever SummerFest, featuring a rummage sale, games, vendors, food, and music, with all proceeds going to support general operations. (Look for more information in the bulletin as the summer progresses.) We also settled on a theme for the 2019 campaign and agreed to produce similar campaign materials. Note that, this year, Consecration Sunday will be November 10. Additionally, we discussed further communications with the congregation on Little River’s fiscal health and unfunded priorities and an educational seminar on charitable giving in the fall. The committee’s next meeting will be July 8.

May 19, 2019

A Message from the Stewardship Committee Addressing Unfunded Priorities

At the January congregational meeting, the Trustees presented – and the congregation approved – a 2019 budget based on submitted pledges and other anticipated income. However, Trustees also shared roughly $75,000 in unfunded priorities which we would pursue by “other means,” including separate fundraising. The Stewardship Committee, in partnership with affected boards and committees, is committed to providing regular communication on these efforts, in the interest of full transparency and to aid members in their decision-making process on supporting key ministries.

First, we are pleased to announce another success! Thanks to generous free-will offerings at the Shrove Pancake Supper ($1,700) and Open Mic Night ($407), as well as a Potomac Association grant ($1,600) and some specific donations by a few individuals, we have surpassed our goal of $4,000 to support the youth’s mission trip to Puerto Rico. Second, with your Easter offering of nearly $4,000, LRUCC will be purchasing 10,000 meals to pack on September 28 for the Rise Against Hunger campaign, with about $500 remaining for the Board of Outreach and Social Justice (BOSJ) to distribute to other hunger-related organizations. Stay tuned for opportunities to support benevolences in the areas of environmental justice/climate change, immigration/refugees, and racial justice. Third, above and beyond the aforementioned $75,000, we are also seeking to raise $10,000 to support Pastor Alexis during Pastor David’s upcoming sabbatical. The Church Council has approved the transfer of funds from the Transition Contingency Fund ($7,800), with the remaining amount to come from the General Fund, which is dependent on your gifts and offerings. At this time, we do not anticipate additional costs in this area thanks to thoughtful planning by our pastors, deacons, and trustees and a willingness by staff and other volunteers to step up during this time of need.

Meanwhile, there are ongoing discussions around other unfunded priorities, including building security and maintenance and a First Friday coordinator. Your church leadership would welcome further discussions with you about sustaining and enhancing any of these important works.

April 29, 2019

The Stewardship Committee met on April 29 at the home of member Caroline Labbe. We debriefed on the recent Ministry Board and Church Council meetings and Pastor David’s sabbatical listening session and shared updates on our action items, including designating a liaison for the Nominations and Appointments Committee, organizing a summer fundraising event, and planning an educational seminar on charitable giving. We also discussed themes, messaging, and activities for the 2019 campaign. With the recent passing of Al Kassabian, the committee is acknowledging additional memorial gifts. The committee’s next meeting will be on June 3.

March 25, 2019

The Stewardship Committee met on March 25 at the church.  We debriefed on the recent Ministry Board and Church Council meetings and shared updates on our action items, including progress on the church’s unfunded priorities.  (A reminder to the congregation that the Easter offering will support both the Rise Against Hunger meal-packing campaign and other hunger-related organizations, and any April 27 Open Mike Night donations will support the youth’s mission trip to Puerto Rico.)  We also discussed connecting with new church members and planning an informational session for the community on charitable giving under the new tax law in the coming months. In the meantime, the committee continues to acknowledge memorial gifts for Ginna Minasian Dalton, Jane Hustvedt, and Hal Lamm.  The committee’s next meeting will be in late April.

March 17, 2019

Addressing Unfunded Priorities

At the January congregational meeting, the Trustees presented – and the congregation approved – a 2019 budget based on submitted pledges and other anticipated income. However, Trustees also shared roughly $75,000 in unfunded priorities which we would pursue by “other means,” including separate fundraising. The Stewardship Committee, in partnership with affected boards and committees, is committed to providing regular communication on these efforts, in the interest of full transparency and to aid members in their decision-making process on supporting key ministries.

First, we are pleased to announce a success! Although the budget was unable to transfer any funding to the Organ Repair Reserve, through generous gifts – including memorial gifts – the fund recently exceeded the Music Committee’s goal of $18,000, which, in combination with some additional planned activities, should fully pay for the organ repairs planned for this summer. Second, we have made significant steps in supporting the youth’s mission trip to Puerto Rico. The Shrove Pancake Supper brought in some $1,700, and Pastor Alexis successfully secured a grant from the Potomac Association of $1,600. While there are still substantial needs here, we are hopeful upcoming events – including the April 27 Open Mic Night – will help close the remaining gap. Third, regarding Board of Outreach and Social Justice (BOSJ)-directed benevolences, the Ministry Board approved the Easter offering for the Rise Against Hunger meal-packing campaign, with any surplus for other hunger-related organizations.

Stay tuned for similar opportunities to support benevolences in the areas of environmental justice/climate change, immigration/refugees, and racial justice. Also, there are ongoing discussions around funding building security and maintenance and a First Friday coordinator.

February 25, 2019

The Stewardship Committee met on February 25 at the church. We welcomed Bruce Summers as our newest member! We spent the bulk of the meeting debriefing on the 2018 campaign, identifying successes and challenges, and discussed important factors to consider in developing the 2019 campaign to support 2020 operations (including Little River’s 65th anniversary and Pastor David’s sabbatical). We also discussed the need to raise additional funds to support unmet needs identified by the Trustees and increasing communication with the congregation on those efforts. We are planning an informational session for the community on charitable giving under the new tax law in the coming months. The committee’s next meeting will be March 25.

January 13, 2019

One final appeal from your Stewardship Committee for 2019 pledges! To date, the congregation had pledged $533,596, leaving us significantly short our goal of $630,000. Any shortfall in pledges means resources will need to be cut from valuable ministries and programs in the preliminary budget being prepared by Trustees. Fortunately, new or increased pledges can still be factored into the budget for presentation at the upcoming congregational meeting. Please submit a Pledge Card (available in the narthex or in the church office) or reach out to Adam Honeysett via email or phone at (703) 323-0416 out of gratitude to God and in support of the church’s mission at home and abroad.

January 6, 2019

Thanks again to everyone who participated in the “A Piece of God’s Plan” stewardship campaign. As of December 31, 2018, the congregation had pledged $530,596, putting us at 84% of our goal of $630,000. Even though we have started a new calendar year, there is still some time to make a initial pledge or increase your current pledge. Any pledges received within the next couple of weeks will make a tremendous difference in the preliminary budget presented by the Trustees at upcoming congregational meeting. Please submit a Pledge Card (available in the narthex or in the church office) or reach out to Adam Honeysett at (703) 323-0416 to support Little River’s many ministries which sustain our spiritual lives and enable us to reach the wider world.

December 23, 2018

The calendar year is quickly coming to an close, but there is still time to participate in this year’s “A Piece of God’s Plan” stewardship campaign. To date, the congregation has pledged $510,596, putting us at 81% of our goal of $630,000. We really need your help to close the gap! The Trustees are preparing a preliminary budget, and any shortfall in pledges means resources will have to be cut from valuable ministries and programs. If you have previously pledged but not yet submitted this year, we hope to hear from you very soon! If you have not previously pledged, please consider sharing your gifts with the church to have an even greater impact as a community of faith. And, if you have already pledged but can increase your contribution, please let us know! Pledge Cards are available in the narthex and can be dropped in the offering plate or mailed to the office. You may also reach out to Adam Honeysett at (703) 323-0416 or to discuss your pledge.

December 16, 2018

Thanks to so many for participating in this year’s “A Piece of God’s Plan” stewardship campaign.  To date, the congregation has pledged nearly $493,000, putting us at more than 78% of our goal of $630,000.  Now, we still need your help covering the remaining amount!  Remember, our pledges are critical as the Trustees prepare a preliminary budget for the upcoming congregational meeting.  If you have not yet submitted your Pledge Card, please do so by dropping it in the offering plate this Sunday or mailing it to the office.  If you are able to increase your submitted pledge, please reach out to Adam Honeysett at (703) 323-0416 or amhoneysett@verizon.net.

December 9, 2018

Among the committee’s key objectives was hitting 75% of our goal by December 1. Thanks to so many of you responding to additional outreach, we made it! To date, the congregation has pledged nearly $468,000. Now, we still need your help in covering the remaining 25%. Remember, our pledges are critical as the Trustees prepare a preliminary budget for the upcoming congregational meeting. If you have not yet submitted your Pledge Card, please do so by dropping it in the offering plate this Sunday or mailing it to the office. If you are able to increase your submitted pledge, please reach out to Adam Honeysett at (703) 323-0416 or amhoneysett@verizon.net.

December 2, 2018

Thanks to so many for participating in this year’s “A Piece of God’s Plan” stewardship campaign. To date, the congregation has pledged more than $435,000, putting us at nearly 70% of our goal of $630,000. Help us conclude this year’s campaign on a high note! If you have not yet submitted your Pledge Card, please do so by dropping it in the offering plate this Sunday or mailing it to the office. (Pledge cards are available in the narthex, on the table with our puzzle piece pledge tracker, and in the office.) If you are able to increase your submitted pledge, please reach out to Adam Honeysett at (703) 323-0416 or amhoneysett@verizon.net.

November 16, 2018

Thank you for continuing to submit your Pledge Cards for 2019.  To date, the congregation has pledged nearly $380,000, which puts us more than 60% of the way towards our goal of $630,000.  Let’s keep the momentum going!  Every member and friend of Little River has a piece to play in helping make next year another successful year of ministry in our community and the world.  If you have not yet submitted your Pledge Card, please do so by dropping it in the offering plate on Sunday or mailing it to the office.  You can find all the “A Piece of God’s Plan” campaign materials – including the narrative program budget, pledge card, and giving guide – in the narthex, on the table with our puzzle piece pledge tracker.  Also, if you have not already done so, please add your name or other words of gratitude to God to the jigsaw puzzle.

November 9, 2018

Thank you for continuing to submit your Pledge Cards for 2019.  To date, the congregation has pledged more than $345,000, which puts us nearly 55% of the way towards our goal of $630,000.  Let’s keep the momentum going!  Every member and friend of Little River has a piece to play in helping make next year another successful year of ministry in our community and the world.  If you have not yet submitted your Pledge Card, please do so by dropping it in the offering plate on Sunday or mailing it to the office.  You can find all the “A Piece of God’s Plan” campaign materials – including the narrative program budget, pledge card, and giving guide – in the narthex, on the table with our puzzle piece pledge tracker.  Also, if you have not already done so, please add your name or other words of gratitude to God to the jigsaw puzzle.

September 30, 2018

First, a big thanks to everyone who made our recent Silent Auction a big success! The auction made $3,441. We are committing 20% of that amount ($688.20) to the Arts Ministry for its next big project. The remaining 80% ($2,752.80) will go to the church’s General Fund to support our ministries through the end of the calendar year. Second, we hope you received in the mail a letter from Pastor David regarding this year’s stewardship campaign theme: “A Piece of God’s Plan.” What is your particular piece of God’s plan? What gifts has God given you? How might you step up and share your gifts with the church to have an even greater impact as a community of faith? As you prayerfully consider your pledge to Little River for next year, you are invited to give out of gratitude to God and in support of the church’s mission at home and in the wider community. Please reflect on your individual piece of God’s plan, as well as our piece united together as God’s people.

August 13, 2018

The Stewardship Committee met on August 13 at the church.  We debriefed on latest Ministry Board, Finance Committee, and Church Council meetings and discussed the current status of donations for the Silent Auction to help raise funds for general operations that will take place on Rally Day (September 9).  (The deadline to donate has been extended to August 31. Please contact Doreen Manchester at or Michelle Mitchell at to discuss donations and/or volunteer.)  We also reviewed feedback from boards and committees to revise our annual Program Brochure, updated our timeline for the rollout of this year’s campaign, and made assignments for milestone events during the rollout.  The Stewardship Committee’s next meeting will be September 13.