This year’s stewardship campaign has framed our giving as a community effort, in large because we felt it is the most accurate way to describe both our congregation and because that is what we are – a faith community. Our first Sunday’s scriptures were stories of how God is always seeking the lost, and celebrates with us each time we are found. Over and over again, we are invited to return to community and reminded that we have a place in community as called, claimed and named people.

I shared with our children that day the song, “The Magic Penny,” which includes the words, “love isn’t love ‘til you give it away… and you end up having more.” The Christian faith calls us to give our love with extravagant generosity, and we see that at South Gate in many ways: food drives, including our recent one for after school food for area teenagers and our new one for college students; our welcome breakfast for our preschool parents; Happy Circle; our growing youth group; our United Methodist Mission shares that support mission and justice work around the world; and local hands-on care ranging from all the good work accomplished via our summer’s Mission Passport to the backpack program to our quilting and knitting groups.

That’s a lot of love to share. I’m proud to be part of #TeamSouthGate, and I’m glad you are, too. The Stewardship committee has set a goal of a 10% increase in our financial giving for the next year – and I know we can commit to a 100% increase in our love for the next year, after all – when you give it away, you end up having more!

Rev. Stephanie