One of the most exciting aspects about ministry at Quest is our stewardship philosophy. It has been there from the beginning – even before the church got started. So, it is exciting to see stuff in my heart/mind come to some level of fruition. If you want to get to know someone on a deeper basis, you’ll likely want to know how they earn, save, spend, and give away.
Churches are no different. We can say all that we want to say with our lips but a church’s budget speaks a great deal to its ministry and stewardship philosophy. We have a long way to go but after several years of saving a few dollars here and there [Quest is a 6 year churchplant] and tinkering with our nomenclature, we are excited about the church’s 1 Fund and 3 Foundations. Our hope is to grow financially healthy as a church so that we are able to invest 10% of the weekly offering respectively to each of these funds. We’re probably budgeted to allocate about 15-20% this year and our goal is to eventually grow to invest 40% of the giving to these respective funds:
Future Investment Fund. The purpose of this fund is to save and invest for the future growth and expansion of the church. This could include large purchases, renovations, new property, etc.
Churchplanting Foundation. The purpose is to invest in new churchplants and/or campuses.
Community Development Foundation. The purpose is to invest in initiatives, organizations, and projects in the local community.
Global Presence Foundation. The purpose is to invest in iniatiatives, organizations, and projects in the larger global world.
So, what happens to the funds in these foundations?
They are given away. They are set aside for members and friends of our church to use to pursue their convictions, dreams, and passions. Obviously, there’s an application and discernment process but we are excited what God can do through the body of Christ at Quest. We don’t need to build up our institution because we know that more fruit can be produced when we release resources back to the church community. Even now, I am amazed by the substantive work that many are doing within the Quest Community.
Currently, there’s about $50,000 [and counting since funds are added every week] set aside each in both the Churchplanting and Global Presence Foundation. The CDF is a new foundation but we are very excited to see how that foundation can be used to invest in community development in the larger Seattle area. The funds are in motion right now: Some initiatives are starting in Tanzania, a new missionary is being commissioned in two weeks to China, a school [in partnership with others] will be built in a village in Uganda, a computer lab is scheduled to be built in Goma, Congo, and a Karen/Burmese immigrant churchplant is being supported locally here in Federal Way, Washington.
And I’m really hoping that the church will release some funds via the Foundations above to assist my wife and I as we launch a new humanitarian organization [purpose: fight extreme global poverty] this summer.
I’m not crazy about numbers but I do pray that Quest will grow in numerous ways – size, depth, presence, etc. As we grow in depth, I dream about the impact we can have for the Gospel. I’ve also publicly shared that I’d love to see Quest grow to have yearly financial offerings that exceed one million dollars. That way, we can ensure that every year, at least $300,000 will be set aside for these Foundations.
These Foundations reflect our ministry philosophy to be a church that funds, starts, seeds, and catalyzes new initiatives, organizations, and projects by Quest Church members and partners. Simply, we want to do God’s work: here, there, and everywhere. Or in other words: locally, regionally, and globally.
In other words, we want to Live Out and Demonstrate the Gospel of Jesus.