Eric Butterworth tells us that
God is the Divine givingness of the Universe. And you are created in the image-likeness of this divine givingness. You cannot…realize the free flow of substance in your experience until you begin to see yourself as a giver.
Being a giver to life is a choice to live from the inside out, in alignment with the eternal givingness of Spirit.
Our support of UCP shows up in many ways including:
- Deepening our experience of Spirit, and living authentically;
- Connecting with our life’s purpose and realizing our potential;
- Positive social support, and joy that comes from serving others;
- Living an abundant, full and meaningful life;
- Prayer and spiritual counseling support.
UCP is a Tithing Spiritual Community
As part of our spiritual practice, UCP tithes a full 10% to a variety of sources that provide valuable resources for our continued spiritual growth. Each month the ministers, in conjunction with the Board of Trustees, consciously decide where we will share our gifts, and our tithes are divided into three equal portions usually including Unity Worldwide Ministries, Silent Unity, Unity Worldwide Spiritual Institute, or UMMAS (the organization that produces the annual Kanuga retreat.) Occasionally we send a portion of our tithes to spiritual leaders and authors who have inspired our ministers and/or yourselves directly. In addition, we give 1% of our income to a local charity each month such as, the North Carolina NAACP, NC Diaper Bank, RENA, IFC, HomeStart, and others.
Our Current Financial Health at UCP - November 2018
Our average monthly income is up from last year thanks to all of you who have made a financial commitment to UCP. This year our monthly income is approximately $12,000. Our average monthly expenses have increased slightly and are close to $12,000. A healthy monthly budget for UCP is $15,000 ($180,000 annually). This amount goes to support your spiritual community in the following ways:
- Building and grounds maintenance and upkeep;
- Interest and installments on loans securing our property (current balance = $120,000, Jan 2018 balance = $135,000);
- Property taxes for the rented part of our building;
- Utilities such as water, lights, heating, air conditioning, telephone, internet;
- Expenses for supplies and equipment;
- Salaries for our part-time support staff, musicians, occasional guest speakers, and the Co-Ministers;
- Increase in Youth and Family staff and training to provide the high quality, reliable youth programs you deserve.
As with any building and property, we occasionally have unexpected repair expenses. Hurricane Florence visited and gave us a flooded downstairs rental space. It was quickly addressed with repairs totaling $2,400 and a sump pump system to mitigate future ones ($1,700). Florence also roughened our drive and parking lot.
The good news is that our Board and Finance Team are wise financial stewards and have creatively pared every expense to its possible minimum. We deeply appreciate their miraculous work. We envision easily addressing the above mentioned expenses and joyously growing toward robust financial health.
Visioning Our Financial Future
All Unity centers are independent and not financially supported by the larger Unity organization. With the exception of building rentals, we are supported solely through consistent gifts from generous supportsers like you. Whenever possible, weekly, monthly or quarterly pledges that are deducted automatically (“Conscious Sustainer” pledges) are crucial to our shared well being, and allows us to create a more accurate budget. We are asking our members and friends to pledge a fair share of their income. This is a planned recurring investment in your spiritual home.
What is My Fair Share?
We define 5% of gross income as a “fair share.” A tithe is a full 10% of gross income. Again, Butterworth has guiding wisdom for us.
It is wise to remind yourself that the 10 percent is simply a disciplined reminder to bring the whole tithe. The giving consciousness must continue where the tithe check leaves off.
Whatever we choose to give we do so from the heart knowing that our giving is giving way to the divine flow.
The first step in determining your fair share is “consciousness before calculation.” Pledging is a conscious act of opening to the flow of abundance through your life. It is not seeing what is left over after your expenses are paid. In pledging, you activate the Law of Circulation in your life as well as sustain your spiritual community. Pledging is truly about you and your relationship with Spirit and your desire to express Spirit vibrantly in community.
Next, we request that you actually calculate 5% of your pre-tax (gross) household income as the second step in your pledge decision process. Or, if you decide you’d like to begin tithing, you would calculate 10% of your gross income.
If you have variable income, you may be wondering how you can estimate 5% or 10%. Many UCP members are independent contractors or business owners; they create a baseline amount based on a low average month and calculate their gift on that. When they earn more than their baseline, they give more.
The Next Step
We are so grateful for you, your love, your presence, participation, and support of your spiritual home, Unity Center of Peace. Become a Conscious Sustainer if you would like to let us know of your future giving support. Use the Give online now button to make a secure one time or recurring payment from your credit card or bank account.
I gratefully receive and acknowledge my gifts from the Universe as I contribute joyously in the form of service and money. I support the circulation of Spirit by completing the cycle of giving and receiving, through my life and my community. - A UCP Member