When Tom and I started writing our recently released book ChurchMoney, we thought it had the potential to really strike a chord in the American Catholic Church. In our travels across the country, we have observed that money is one of the biggest – if not the biggest – causes of stress and worry among parish leaders. This is true everywhere, even in economically healthy communities.
The faithful are also loathe to hear about money in church. Too often, our message has been nagging, needy, and guilt driven. It is so bad that, in some cases, we’ve even heard stories of parishioners avoiding stewardship and annual appeal weekends completely. Money can even become a divisive source of conflict in parish life.
We wrote this book to change that. Embracing our mission of making disciples will solve the financial problems the Church faces. It means teaching people from the pulpit what Jesus and the Scriptures have to say about money and how to handle it well. It means approaching money as a spiritual issue instead of trying to trick people out of money through fundraisers or guilt. It means showing parishioners how their giving can make a positive impact in the world.
We seem to have been right that ChurchMoney would cause a stir. It is the #1 new release in multiple categories on Amazon and has (so far) garnered only 5-star reviews. Here is what some people have been saying about ChurchMoney:
This is a book that will shift your paradigm about money in the Church. The authors have clearly communicated that the purpose of money is to fulfill the great commandment and the great commission. “Because in the end, it isn’t about money; it’s about the eternal impact we can and need to make with money.” Imagine what Church would look like if Christians would view money from this perspective. ChurchMoney gives you the practical steps to shift your perspective, become a generous giver and make an eternal impact.
I read this in a day and I’ve already purchased more books for my Stewardship Committee … Father White and Mr. Corcoran have provided the Church a great service with this book. Finally, we have a solid Catholic perspective on money–not built on guilt or need–based on the central biblical principle that everything we have comes from God, and to God all, including our very lives, will be returned. I found myself challenged, affirmed and motivated both personally and with my parish community to reevaluate how to view finances, money and stewardship. Truly a must have for every parish Stewardship Committee, Parish Pastoral Council and Finance Council.
As a cradle Catholic, I was a bit nervous about delving into “ChurchMoney: Rebuilding the Way We Fund Our Mission.” Father Michael White and Tom Corcoran certainly nailed the Church money culture I grew up in where stewardship was a word more than a way of life. I found the first quarter of the book a bit uncomfortable as it pretty accurately described the mindset I was familiar with, but by the time Fr. Michael and Tom led me to chapter 7, “Raising Givers,” I not only understood where they were coming from, but was totally onboard.
ChurchMoney is a piece of the Rebuilt series that needed telling. It not only dealt with the financial aspect of raising funds but also explained how the church leadership was able to bring people along mentally and spiritually to an understanding of why they should give.
As with the rest of the Rebuilt series, the book is written in easy to understand language peppered with Fr. Michael’s and Tom’s gut feelings about project turnout. This plain-speaking approach reminds us that this isn’t a theoretical how-to book but one that says “let-us-show you-how-it-can-be-done.” They are amazingly generous in showing the steps and providing the basic tools that can be used by any parish, from how and when to set an example to homilies that have been used. This book should be required reading for all parishioners, especially those serving on finance and pastoral councils.
This book is a gift to the Church.–
Often laugh out loud funny.–
On sale now @ Ave Maria Press, Amazon and Barnes & Noble