GIVING TO CANVAS: AN OVERVIEW
Thank you! …for arriving at this page!
That you are here means you care about Canvas, so much so you are already a providing the financial support or thinking about it. That means a lot!
3 Things I’d Love for you to Know about Canvas & Money:
The first is that Canvas is a non-profit organization, which is to say that we depend upon donations to pay the bills. Indeed, as a congregation of the Presbyterian Church (USA) we are a 501(c)3 charity (contributions are tax deductible in the US!). And while the PCUSA part may sound like we receive money from national church, the opposite is actually the case. Like NPR or PBS our funding comes from people just like you and part of that funding supports the Presbyterian Church.
Secondly, Canvas has a deep commitment to transparency and candidness in our finances. Our books are always open, we publish monthly updates on both income and expenses (printed weekly in our worship notes) and we gather at least annually (more of anyone asks) for a detailed, public review of our budget and financial statements. We know any money given to us is held in trust for God and to be used for his purposes and we make those expenditures clear.
And thirdly, we ask only for what we truly need. A quick look at Canvas’s finances will reveal that we keep expenses low (our staff equates to 2.3 full-time employees), we rent space vs. owning, we don’t hold significant funds in reserves or possess any endowments. We believe the church exists only insofar as it carries out the ministry of Jesus and as such is always dependent upon God’s provision. Thus we have a small reserve for emergencies and cash-flow, but we don’t stockpile money.
All this means, we depend on you to make Canvas go. So if you believe we are making an important contribution to the world, you can say so by contributing to our budget in several ways…
A New or Extra One-Time Contribution
Whether you are a regular giver to Canvas who feels the call to give an extra measure of support, or simply been touched by our work and wish to donate to the cause, we are grateful for your generosity! You can quickly and easily give to Canvas via Venmo, or through our online giving portal, or go old school and mail a check (or, even better, drop it off and say hi!!. And if you have more complex transaction needs (stock transfers, charitable trusts, etc.), we can help with those as well, just e-mail Debbie (our Dir. of Ministry and Operations).
As you can imagine, regular donations are a huge help! If you want to be an on-going supporter of Canvas, the easiest ways to do so is by automating the process, which you can do by means of our online giving portal or by creating an ACH transfer via your bank’s online bill-pay service. (Again if you have any questions about setting this up, just send us an e-mail.)
Pledging is something we ask of our formal Canvas members (though there is no penalty for not pledging and the practice is not limited to members!). Pledging is simply letting the church leaders know what you think you will contribute to the work of Canvas for the calendar year ahead (it is not any kind of binding contract!). And the reason we ask is that having a good sense of our annual income helps us budget wisely (Presbyterians are into good management). And, frankly, planning our giving is a way of reflecting thoughtfully about how we intend steward our finances. (We all know that how we invest our money both reflects and shapes our values, and God does instruct Jesus’s self-professed disciples in the use of their wealth…)
If you are ready to take the step of pledging, the easiest way is to fill out our online pledge form. The form itself will take about 10 seconds to complete. The more important part is taking some time to think and pray about what your pledge should be. (And, of course, you are welcome to e-mail a pledge to us as well!).
Questions, Thoughts, Other…
As I mentioned above, Canvas is deeply committed to transparency with finances, so if you have questions about any dimension of giving or spending, please ask. I Kirk am happy to talk about any part of Canvas finances, the theology of money, the discernment of God’s call to give… For the mechanics of giving (online, Venmo, etc.) or a current snapshot of Canvas’s finances, email Debbie. And for a more detailed overview of the financial picture, the budget, or for technical finance questions, you can e-mail our treasurer, John Bowers.
Thank you, again, for taking the time to learn about giving to Canvas! You are the reason we can do what we do.