Tag Archive - funding

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Underfunded: 4 Reasons Why Church Vision Stalls

We believe in the power of a clear vision and a solid action plan to help churches move forward.

But too often, we see churches seek God for a vision, diligently plan for action and then hit a wall they don’t have to hit. We have seen passionate teams and inspiring visions stall out because one key aspect commonly receives too little focus…funding.

We often see church leaders sidestep this component of vision. No matter the effort and inspiration, an underfunded vision will result in a stagnant plan.

This is a conversation we’ve been having lately. We want to invite you into it. Join Tony Morgan, Joe Sangl and Marty Schmidt for a free webinar on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at 1pm EST.

Underfunded: 4 Reasons Church Vision Stalls

The conversation will center on the most common reasons we see church vision stall when it comes to funding.

You will learn to recognize and diagnose issues like:

  • The Un-Fundable Vision
  • Fundraising vs. Building a Generous Culture
  • The Campaign Trap
  • Not Knowing What You Don’t Know (and Proceeding Anyway)

Space is limited, so register asap. We hope to see you there!


Posted in Leadership

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Navigating the Money Conversation at Church: A Practical Resource for Leaders

Most churches that create a strategic plan never quite figure out how to fund it.

I’ve seen it happen over and over: a leadership team creates a strong strategic plan and commits to working it. But, they get stuck when it comes to directing their resources to effectively fund the plan. Talking about finances with your leadership team is really tough. This is why many strategic plans end up only partially funded or shelved altogether.

You created your strategic plan because you care about your church’s future. But to implement it well, you have to have the hard conversations and wrestle with difficult questions like:

  • What ministries are a priority for growth?
  • What ministries should we bury?
  • Where are the best places to direct our funds?

It’s important to navigate this topic well with your team so that you can begin to align your budget with your strategy to fully fund your vision.


That’s why we’ve created a new eBook at The Unstuck Group called Funding Your Strategic Plan. It equips church leaders with the tools they need to:

  1. Critically assess their church’s budget and expenses.
  2. Develop a vision-minded budget around core growth engines.
  3. Change how you and your staff spend your money.

You’ll learn how to dissect the types of expenses in your plan, pinpoint missing links and hidden dollars, and identify wise and foolish budgeting. We’ll show you how to leverage your existing assets to generate extra income for your church and get started with a capital campaign. Plus, you’ll learn how to talk about money to your congregation–and inspire generosity in the process.

The future of your church is greatly influenced by how you direct your resources. Follow this link to get your copy and help lead your church to financial health.


Posted in Leadership

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How to Fund the Strategic Plan at your Church

Talking with the leadership team at your church about money can be tough. Changing the way you spend it is even harder.

If you have a strategic plan you’re working with your leadership team to implement, it’s important to start a healthy conversation about finances to effectively navigate this touchy subject together.

Every day, you and your team make decisions about how to allocate your funds. You decide which aspects of your ministry are critical to your growth, and which can be cut. Your church’s future–and the fate of your strategic plan–will be greatly influenced by how you direct your resources.

It isn’t unusual for a church to create a strategic plan, then fall short of actually funding it. The leadership team might work together beautifully to create a strong plan and commit to working it, but too often, they find themselves locked into ineffective or foolish budgeting patterns. Eventually, they might find that their vision is only partially funded…or they might set it aside altogether.

That’s why at the Unstuck Group we’ve created Funding Your Strategic Plan, a practical guide full of insights and conversations that will help you and your team assess your church’s budget with a critical eye,  develop an effective, vision-minded budget around your growth engines, and change the way you and your staff direct your available resources.

Funding Your Strategic Plan will help you dissect the types of expenses in your plan, identify missing links and hidden dollars, and learn the difference between wise and foolish budgeting. We’ll teach you the ropes of Zero-Based Budgeting and show you how to utilize your existing assets to generate extra income for your church. You’ll also learn how to talk about money to your congregation, increase their generosity, and get started with a capital campaign.

Ready to dig in? You can get a copy of Funding Your Strategic Plan in the TonyMorganLive.com store,


Posted in Leadership

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3 Reasons People don’t Give to your Church

A few months back I did a series of posts on 6 big ideas about “Engaging the Givers in your Church.” And just like there are real actionable steps that churches can take to engage givers, there are also things that churches do to repel givers. More often than not they’re doing these things and they don’t even know it. So below are three guaranteed generosity killers that are running rampant in churches today.

1. Ingratitude

You’d be surprised how infrequently churches take the time to say thank you to people who financially support the ministry. And you’d probably also be as equally surprised how far a simple thank you will go. Here are a few suggestions you can put into action this week to change that: 1) Make sure every time a person gives for the first time to the ministry of your church that they get a letter to acknowledge their gift and say thank you. 2) Each week send a handwritten personal note to each person who gives a generous gift to the ministry. 3) Say thank you from the stage and celebrate the generosity of your church when they’re generous. When you don’t say thank you what you’re saying is you don’t care.

2. Waste, or the Perception of Waste

When people feel that their financial gift and sacrifice is being used in a wasteful manner they will pull their funding in a heartbeat. What I’m not saying is that everything should be value engineered, that isn’t the highest goal. But when funds aren’t used in a strategic manner that clearly advances the mission, that’s wasteful. No doubt having the right tool for the job is important. But don’t confuse the fact that extravagance is not the same thing as excellence.

3. Duplicity

When you say you are going to use a particular offering for one need and then turn around and use it for something else you break trust. And trust is the foundation for leadership. Simply put, people don’t give to ministries that don’t have a high level of trust in.

What else have you seen churches do that discourage giving? What would you add to the list? Leave a comment!


Posted in Leadership, Spiritual Formation

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Engaging the Givers in your Church Part-1

When it comes to engaging major givers in the church a majority pastors feel uncomfortable at best. Many pastors don’t know how to approach the subject and are afraid of saying the wrong thing. While churches have often built elaborate strategies to help people take steps in their spiritual journey and grow in their relationship with Jesus; they usually resort to a “just preach the Word and hope things work out” approach to giving. The problem is hope isn’t a strategy. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Here are first 3 of 6 ideas and principles to keep in mind when engaging the givers in your church.

1. Keep Track of Givers

I’ve heard it said in churches that the pastor shouldn’t know who is giving what. After all, didn’t Jesus say in Matthew 6:3, When you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.” Well yes He did…but it had more to do with the motive of the giver than anything else. What we have a tendency to forget is Jesus also clearly observed (along with everyone else), and went so far as to point out the actual dollar amount that a widow gave in Mark chapter 12. Now I’m not saying we should parade givers in front of the church to let everyone know what everyone else is giving but someone should know. After all if you don’t know who is giving, then it’s going to be pretty difficult to engage them at any level.

2. Say Thank You

You’d be surprised how far a simple thank you will get you, and sadly how few churches ever say it. A simple way for pastors to engage the givers in their church is to have a list of givers generated each week and write a hand written thank you note. The list can be of the top 10 or 20 givers that week, the top 20% each week, or simply set a dollar amount and each person who gives over that amount gets a note.

3. Give them Inside Information

Another simple way to engage givers at your church is to occasionally do small, intimate, invite only gatherings. Moments like this give you the opportunity to share wins and success stories (stories like this build culture by the way), have personal face-to-face conversations, share vision, and share inside information about steps that are being taken in the near future to accomplish the vision.

I’ll post the other 3 ideas tomorrow. In the meantime I’d love to hear your thoughts and experience with engaging the givers at your church. Leave a comment!


Posted in Leadership