Dear Lord, teach me to be generous;
Teach me to serve you as you deserve;
To give and not to count the cost;
To fight and not to heed the wounds;
To toil, and not to seek for rest;
To labor, and not to ask for any reward –
except that of knowing that I am doing your holy will.
~St. Ignatius of Loyola
Stewardship is a far richer, more profound and more important topic than fund raising.
In their 1992 pastoral letter, Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response, the bishops of
the United States define a Christian steward as “one who receives God’s gifts gratefully,
cherishes and tends them in a responsible manner, shares them in a responsible manner,
shares them in justice and love with others, and returns them with increase to the
Consider what the bishops meant by “God’s gifts”. Were they talking about financial
wealth? Yes indeed, because our wealth along with our ability to create our wealth
is a gift of God’s grace! All that we are and all that we have are gifts to us from
the Father. But it matters very little if we are talking about gifts of time, gifts
of talent and ability or gifts of treasure. The bishops make no distinction in their
definition. The same measurements are applied to all stewardship, all gifts. Those
measurements are: gratitude, responsibility, charity and accountability.
From One Spirit, One People of God
Office of Stewardship, Archdiocese of Atlanta
The promotion of the practice of stewardship is important for the mission of the
Church and for the spiritual well-being of each individual Christian. Everyone benefits
from the sacrificial gift one makes of his time, talent, and treasure.
Pope Benedict XVI