Important message from Kip
‘For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.’
(2 Corinthians 8.9)
Not the best of times!
I am writing to make a financial appeal for supporting the life and work of St Peter’s, and I realise this is not the best of times to be doing this. Many of you may have deep concerns about your own finances at this time.
Like many charities, the Church of England, the Diocese of Liverpool, Liverpool South Deanery and our own church’s finances are deeply concerning. So it is my role and responsibility to alert you to the needs of St Peter’s, and ask for help from those who feel able to give it. This appeal is made with a huge sense of gratitude to all those who give either regularly or on a one-off basis.
Our vision is always God – the God made known to us in Jesus. We seek to help everyone come to know and grow in God’s love and to follow Jesus by living out their faith in everyday life.
At St Peter’s we aim to fulfil our vision in some of the following ways:
- Worship – we hope and pray that we provide worship that transforms, inspires, enables and equips all ages to live out their faith day by day. (We would love to offer more during lockdown but are limited by capacity.)
- Buildings – under more normal circumstances our wonderful buildings are used most days of the week throughout the year. As with a home, there is regular maintenance required, alongside the running costs.
- Staff – we have an extremely hard-working staff, alongside a large number of volunteers, dealing with administration, the website, a wide variety of communication, enquiries, arrangements, grant applications, facilitating community events and meetings, running youth work, supporting children’s groups and leaders, initiating and running training activities and so much more.
- Community – through the Hub we have a bridge into the community. During lockdown we have been caring particularly for the isolated and vulnerable as well as linking with other churches and organisations caring in the community and with the local council. There are many groups and activities at St Peter’s where people can meet with God, make friends and learn together to follow Jesus.
The stark facts
In 2019 maintenance and repair costs came to well over £30,000. At the same time congregational giving took a down turn and PCC began to look at ways of increasing our income streams as well as also planning a stewardship campaign for early this year, which has been delayed because of Covid-19.
This year we were looking at a deficit of £40,000. A number of our regular givers have died during the past year which has meant our income has fallen considerably. Added to this, during the pandemic we have had no plate collection, no income from rent, occasional offices (weddings, church funerals etc) or Beatles tourists. We are extremely grateful for a large legacy, which has eased the immediate crisis, but our financial situation is still concerning and fragile.
I realise this information will come as a real shock to many of you. I want to strongly emphasise this situation is not due to any mismanagement. Those caring for the fabric and finance of St Peter’s give sustained and sacrificial effort with considerable skill and wisdom, month by month, and I am deeply grateful to them. In some ways it is a sign of the times. Over recent years we have lost a number of wonderfully faithful and regular givers to St Peter’s. My challenge to the generations following, as part of being a disciple of Jesus, will you step into their shoes by supporting God’s work in committing yourself to regular giving?
As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” (Luke 21.1-4)
In this story Jesus admires this woman’s generosity. She gave what she could and it delighted him. I encourage you all to pray, and then before God to decide how you can respond, and find peace in doing so.
How to respond
- Regular giving
We encourage all our church members to give regularly by joining the Planning Giving Scheme (PGS). Tim Warn is our PGS Co-ordinator and you can contact him on 0151 291 6432 or 07949157038. PGS Gift Forms (which include a Gift Aid Declaration) are available from him.
- Personal bank account details
- The name of the parish you wish to donate to
- You will need to confirm if you want to increase your gift in line with inflation each year
- Confirm if you are eligible for Gift Aid
- They will need the PGS code for St Peters which is 220622033
- One-off donations
During the Covid-19 pandemic while the church is closed, you can put donations of cheques (made payable to St Peter’s PCC) in an envelope and post (by hand or Royal Mail) to St Peter’s c/o the Rectory, 67 Church Road, Woolton L25 6DA.
- Gift Aid
If you are a UK tax payer you can increase the amount of your gift by completing a Gift Aid Declaration which you can find here . This will allow us to claim an additional 25p for every £1 you give.
- Online giving
On-line giving arrangements have now been set up through the Charities Aid Foundation here
Thank you for reading this. With every best wish.