I was scrolling through Instagram today and saw this new video about tithing from Jackie Angel from Ascension Presents. We talk a lot about tithing and stewardship over here at OSV, so I had to watch. She has two great quotes, one short, one a little longer.
“Tithing is a disposition of the heart.”
“When people are being formed into disciples they are more willing to give of their time, their talent, and their treasure. When I go to certain parishes where the priests are really speaking the truth boldly and again, the church, it’s a place that is forming disciples those people give money. I know sometimes people are afraid that if we preach the truth, because truth is hard, if we preach the tough truth people are gonna go away. But I actually see the opposite. That when churches, when priests preach the hard truth, people become disciples and those disciples are the ones who give more. They give generously.”
You can watch the whole video for yourself below (it’s worth the 7 minutes):
I’m asked at least once a week, “how do we get those millennials back?” The answer is simple, but it’s not easy. The simple answer is “Live out the faith. The whole faith, the whole truth, the whole way.” Ask yourself, “Is this what Jesus is calling us to do as a Catholic or are we just trying to do as little as possible to get by?”
I’m sure you’re shaking your head thinking, “Katie, what does that have to do with tithing?” It has everything to do with tithing and stewardship. As Jackie says in the video, disciples give generously from abundance. Focus on making true disciples. As the Bishops titled their letter: “Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response.”
This is the hard, slow work of being in ministry: Forming Disciples. It’s about walking with people where they are (not where we would like them to be). It’s about hard conversations about difficult truths that don’t coincide with our culture. It involves explaining, debating, embracing doubt, and asking hard questions; digging into the deep muck of it all.
If your parish wants more young people, more young families, more engagement (time, talent, & treasure) from people of all ages, then look at everything in your parish culture. From start to finish, “Is this ministry/leader/person/event/opportunity helping us live the whole truth of the faith in a way that invites people to be formed as a disciple of Christ?” If that answer is no, then the ministry/leader/person/event/opportunity probably needs some attention.