Nashville, TN-- United Methodists gave more generously than ever before, surpassing the previous years total giving by more than 50%. This assessment of 2005 giving was reported today by Sandra K. Lackore, general secretary and treasurer of the General Council on Finance and Administration (GCFA) of The United Methodist Church.
Lackore stated, In a year that brought much natural devastation to so many of our local congregations around the globe, we have a great deal to celebrate.
We celebrate the overwhelming generosity of the people of The United Methodist Church, said Lackore. Explaining that total giving in 2005 was $85 million more than 2004, a 53.6% increase, Lackore reported that $80 million of the increase was given for tsunami and hurricane relief efforts.
Fifteen annual conferences were recognized for participating at the 100% level of all apportioned funds, an increase of three conferences over 2004. These conferences included:
Six additional annual conferences were recognized for participating at the 90% level or higher of all apportioned funds. These conferences were:
Lackore noted the faithfulness of the denomination to the connectional covenant of apportioned giving, citing the Mississippi and Louisiana Conferences that, in the midst of extreme devastation and hardship, maintained their apportioned giving at or slightly above their 2004 levels. The Alabama-West Florida, Florida, and Texas Conferencesgreatly impacted by the hurricane season as wellwere recognized for maintaining or slightly increasing their participation rate in apportioned giving.
In closing her report Lackore concluded, We celebrate the faithfulness of so many local congregations and conferences in meeting their commitment to the apportioned general funds in 2005. These funds drive the financial mission statement of our denomination. By working together and fully participating in the general apportioned funds, we make possible the mission and ministry of Christ.
Lackore communicated these findings with annual conference communicators in a live Web cast coordinated by United Methodist Communications.