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Religious Fundraising


Web Sites | Books | Additional Resources

This web site is intended as a starting point for people who are interested in raising money for their churches, synagogues, etc. or religious organizations.  

Web Sites

A helpful list of 101 different fundraising ideas for churches and faith-based organizations. Look through this list to find a fundraising idea that fits your congregation's size and personality. Source supplied by Jamie Lewis at outreach@atpay.com
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Advice from FundraiserHelp.com
Raising money for your church is an important task that deserves the best approach. This article examines campaigns based around donor recognition that aim to strengthen community ties with your church.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Internet Archive Link
Courtesy of the Franconia Mennonite Conference.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

A helpful resource for planned giving programs, brought to your by the Lutheran Community Foundation and Thrivent Financial for Lutherans.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

This private consultant gives tips on "How Much Should We Ask People to Give?", "Money and the Spirit : It's Time To Talk about Money at Church", "What Really Matters at Canvas Time", and "The Short List". Click here for more of his publications.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

This company lists fundraising ideas and products for churches, church schools, mission trips, etc.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Be sure to check out the resources section.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Part 1 -- The Place of Endowment Funds in the Local Church
Part 2 -- How Pastors Can Encourage Planned/Deferred Gifts
Part 3 -- Encouraging Gifts to a Local Church Endowment Fund
Part 4 -- Guide to Memorial and Honor Giving in the Local Church
Part 5 -- Descriptions of the Major Planned Gift Vehicles
Part 6 -- Planned Giving Resources for Your Use in the Local Church
Part 7 -- Getting Started on a Local Church Endowment Fund
Part 8 -- Holding an Estate and Gift Workshop in Your Church
Part 9 -- A Model for an Estate Planning Seminar in Your Church
Courtesy of the United Methodist Foundation, Detroit Annual Conference. Still available thanks to the Internet Archive.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Fundraising ideas from Fund-Attic.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Lists fundraisers for youth groups interested in raising money for travel. Courtesy of Explorations in Travel, Inc. and the Internet Archives. [Also listed under Fundraising for Nonprofits.]
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

web link
Peggy Powell Dean, a professional fundraiser for 25 years, pioneered the concept of community campaigns for religious institutions. Common Bond's consulting editor, Kim Lovejoy, asked Ms. Dean for tips on fundraising by small congregations of 20 to 100 people for repair and restoration projects of about $25,000 to $50,000 a year a common situation among grant applicants to the Sacred Sites Program.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)


How do you know your prospect potential? How do you construct a fundraising pyramid for a fund drive or campaign? Do you know the census data for your area? Web page originally developed by the United Methodist Foundation of the Detroit Annual Conference, United Methodist Church, and still available thanks to the Internet Archive.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Scrip is a term that means "substitute money". When you purchase scrip, you're purchasing negotiable gift certificates and prepaid cards that are used just like cash You can use scrip to purchase everyday expenses like food, clothing, and other essentials, and with every purchase, you earn revenue for the church, school, or nonprofit organization of your choice.
The reason for the effectiveness of scrip is simple: families generate revenue through purchases they would make anyway. Groceries, clothing, toys, gifts, even gasoline can be purchased with scrip. An organization of 150 families easily spends between one and two million dollars per year on food, clothing and other essentials. If these families use scrip for these purchases, they can raise as much as $40,000 to $80,000 per year for their organization --without spending an additional penny.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Practical advice from the former Grantseeker.Com Learning Center Home Page.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Formerly called Lutheran Community Foundation.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

A blog dedicated to helping your organization grow its endowment, and a place for you to share ideas and tools with other organizations.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. 2005.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

The faith-based community is an area where activists and grassroots organizations can tap into an organized structure to help with recruiting volunteers, using facilities for meetings, raising money, and expanding a base of support that brings a "moral authority" to your issues. I am not suggesting all grassroots organizations become involved with a religious institution, but I do suggest that the best donors in America are part of a religious community. Almost every nonprofit organization and fundraiser should become familiar with religious institutions, learn what opportunities are available for funding from them, and become visible with their membership. Article by Richard I. Male from Grassroots Fundraising Journal, September/October 2003, Volume 22, Number 5.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Religious institutions receive about half of the money given away by the private sector in America. Although these institutions use most of the money they raise to pay for their own programs, organized religion is also a major source of funds for secular nonprofits. We don't know exactly how much is given away by religious institutions; because of the separation of church and state they are not required to report their giving. However, reliable studies show that organized religion's philanthropic giving to nonreligious activities exceeds that of foundations and corporations combined, putting churches right behind individuals as the largest source of charitable giving. Article by Kim Klein, Shelterforce Online, Number 115, Jan./Feb. 2004.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)

Resource guide outlining successful components of synagogue fundraising campaigns, including annual campaigns, capital campaigns, endowment funds and planned giving. Also includes list of available fundraising resource materials and offers suggestions regarding the use of fundraising consultants. John A. Rosen, United Synagogues of Conservative Judaism.
(Last checked 06/01/2017)


The books mentioned on this page are available for public use in the Michigan State University Libraries. If you are unable to visit our library, consider visiting a Foundation Center Cooperating Collection in your home state or a local public library in your home town. If the books are not available there, ask about interlibrary loan or visit a local bookstore to find out whether they can be purchased.

ASK AND YOU SHALL RECEIVE : A FUNDRAISING TRAINING PROGRAM FOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS AND PROJECTS : LEADER'S MANUAL. Kim Klein. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass Publishers, 2000. 159pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .K56 2000
How to set goals, write a case statement, develop a budget, choose fundraising techniques, ask for money, and much more. Contents: Introduction : who is this book for? How to use this guide : notes for leaders -- Who gives, and why? -- What do you think about money? -- What you need before you begin raising money -- Completing the case statement -- The role of volunteers in fundraising -- Overview of fundraising strategies and their uses -- Special events -- The wide world of mail -- The direct mail package -- Judicious use of the telephone -- Planning major gifts campaigns -- Approaching prospects for a major gift -- Creating a budget -- Putting it all together in a fundraising plan.
[Church fund raising]

ASK AND YOU SHALL RECEIVE : A FUNDRAISING TRAINING PROGRAM FOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS AND PROJECTS : PARTICIPANT'S MANUAL. Kim Klein. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass Publishers, 2000. 75pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .K563 2000
How to set goals, write a case statement, develop a budget, choose fundraising techniques, ask for money, and much more.
[Church fund raising]

BUILDING EFFECTIVE BOARDS FOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS : A HANDBOOK FOR TRUSTEES, PRESIDENTS, AND CHURCH LEADERS. Thomas P. Holland, David C. Hester, editors. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass Publishers, 2000. 216pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV652 .B765 2000
Through their admirable energy, dedication, and leadership, religious board members sustain our world's most invaluable organizations. This in-depth handbook offers essential insights from respected veterans of religious and nonprofit work on governing an organization with a religious mission. Drawing on years of research, consulting, and hands-on religious nonprofit work, the authors show how board members can clearly define their roles and mission, transform hierarchical structures into models of collaborative leadership, and organize for greater impact.
From congregations and seminaries to soup kitchens, hospital chains, and social service agencies, Building Effective Boards for Religious Organizations examines both the nature and nurture of religious boards. Interfaith in scope and brimming with real-life examples, it skillfully demonstrates how a religious board can escape common problems, and how understanding the full depth of the organization's mission can help it best fulfill its intended purpose.
[Church management--handbooks, manuals, etc.]

CAPITAL CAMPAIGNS YOU CAN DO YOURSELF. John R. Bisagno. Nashville, TN: Boardman & Holman Publishers, 2002. 130pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .B57 2002
Directed to ministers and others responsible for churches and congregations, the book outlines the principles of campaigns for raising funds to enable new buildings or the purchase of land. Covers pledges, committee structures, special events, and also provides suggested sermons that can inspire donors.
Also called Successful Church Fund-Raising: Capital Campaigns You Can Do Yourself.
[Church fund raising]

CHURCHES AS A COMMUNITY RESOURCE AND SOURCE OF FUNDING FOR HUMAN SERVICES. Susan Grettenberger. Washington, DC : Aspen Institute, Nonprofit Sector Research Fund, 2001. 19pp. Remote Storage HV41.9.U5 G74 2001
As devolution reduces government support of assistance services, religious congregations have been identified as potential providers. Yet few efforts have been made to understand the congregations' capacity to provide those services. This study documents the work of the United Methodist Churches of Michigan and their potential to provide more non-religious services to their communities. In what service areas are the church groups already active? Have requests for assistance increased in recent years? If so, do churches have the ability to meet the increased needs? What groups are the churches more likely and less likely to help? In what areas could the churches bolster their efforts?

COMPLETE GUIDE TO CAPITAL CAMPAIGNS FOR HISTORIC CHURCHES AND SYNAGOGUES. Peggy Powell Dean and Susanna A. Jones. Philadelphia, Pa. : Partners for Sacred Places, 1991. 188pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .D4 1991
Describes how religious congregations can raise money for building/restoration projects. Includes advice on hiring a consultant, identifying potential donors, training volunteers, and raising money from local corporations, government, and other sources.
[Church fund raising]
[Synagogue fund raising]

CONGREGATIONAL ENDOWMENT GUIDE : A HELPFUL RESOURCE FOR YOUR PLANNED GIVING PROGRAM. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and the Lutheran Community Foundation. Minneapolis, MN : Lutheran Community Foundation, c2005. 58pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .T47 2005
[Endowments -- United States]
[-Church fund raising -- United States]
[Lutheran Church -- United States -- Endowments]

CONGREGATIONS AT THE CROSSROADS : REMEMBERING TO BE HOUSEHOLDS OF GOD. Ronald E. Vallet. Grand Rapids, Mich., William B. Eerdmans Publicshing Co., 1998. Request through interlibrary loan.
"In the biblical tradition, steward is the primary metaphor for ministry. The very heart of what it takes to become a steward is precisely the whole life of the congregation" - Meeks. The author explores the biblical basis for stewardship, with major emphasis on God's promises and commands, to help congregations become the households God intended them to be.

CREATING CONGREGATIONS OF GENEROUS PEOPLE. Michael Duval. An Alban Institute Publication, 1999. Request through interlibrary loan.
What kind of people do our churches challenge us to become? Traditional pledge drives reinforce low-level giving. Can generosity be taught? Will Lutherans ever give as much as Pentecostals? What can churches ask people to give? The average budget provides no reason for generous giving and countless excuses for token giving. Will members of your congregation flourish? Questions, insights, research, critique and common sense suggestions for congregation steward leaders.

CREATIVE STEWARDSHIP FOR THE LOCAL CONGREGATION : INTRODUCING PLANNED GIVING INTO OUR STEWARDSHIP AWARENESS. David G. Schmelling. Wheaton, Il. : Creative Stewardship Strategies, 1992. 2nd edition, 209pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5.S253 1992
Have you ever wondered how to:

  • talk to members about remembering their church in their estate plans?
  • position your church as wanting and needing estate-type gifts?
  • make planned giving an integral part of your stewardship program?
  • create a workable and affordable marketing plan for planned giving?
  • all while also servicing the spritual needs of the members?
    This manual shows you how . . . and more!
    [Church fund raising -- Handbooks, manuals, etc.]
    [Stewardship, Christian]
    [Christian giving]
    [Finance, Personal -- Religious aspects]

    CULTURES OF GIVING : HOW REGION AND RELIGION INFLUENCE PHILANTHROPY. Charles H. Hamliton, Warren F. Ilchman, editors. San Francisco, Calif. : Jossey-Bass, c1995. 138pp. Main Library Stacks BV772 .C82 1995
    Contents: Giving and region : generous and stingy communities / Julian Wolpert -- Different cities, different trustees : geographic variation in the composition of the fundrising board / Rikki Abzug -- Explanations for current levels of religious giving / Dean R. Hoge -- Faith versus money : conflicting views of stewardship and fundraising in the church / Daniel Conway -- Protestants and giving : the tithes that bind? / James Hudnut-Beumler -- Financial contributions for the kingdom from the elect : giving patterns in the black church / Calvin O. Pressley -- Evangelicals : linking fervency of faith and generosity of giving / Wesley K. Willmer -- From generation to generation : transmitting the Jewish philanthropic tradition / Anita H. Plotinsky. Subject Christian giving. Published as New directions for philanthropic fundraising, No. 7 (Spring 1995)
    [Christians -- Charitable contributions -- United States]
    [Jews -- Charitable contributions -- United States]
    [Fund raising -- United States]

    DEBT FREE CHURCH : EXPERIENCING FINANCIAL FREEDOM WHILE GROWING YOUR MINISTRY. Jeff Berg & Jim Burgess. chicago : Moody Press, 1996. 210pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV770 .B46 1996
    Jeff Berg and Jim Burgess show how ministries often miss opportunities to grow and expand because they are held back by debt. Using biblical principles, case studies, and practical advice, the authors answer the questions.
    [Church finance]

    THE DISAPPEARING DONOR ; WHERE YOUR MINISTRY'S LAPSED GIVERS WENT, AND WHY. E. Dale Berkey and Doug Brendel. Akron, OH: Berkey Brendel Sheline, 2005. iii, 152 p. Remote Storage HV41.2 .B44 2005
    In this brief guide, Berkey reveals donors' attitudes and concerns that can be a hindrance to church fundraising, offering advice and suggesting approaches that may be persuasive in bringing them back to the fold.
    [Fund raising]
    [Religious institutions -- Marketing]
    [Church fund raising]

    DON'T SHOOT THE HORSE ('TILL YOU KNOW HOW TO DRIVE THE TRACTOR) MOVING FROM ANNUAL FUND RAISING TO A LIFE OF GIVING. Herb Mather. Disciple Resources, Nashville, Tennessee, 1994. Request through interlibrary loan.
    "The typical congregation today is like a farmer who keeps on ploughing with a horse, though tractors are available. Congregations are under increasing financial stress, yet many respond with out-of date methods. Once-a-year campaigns are no longer reaching either the missional potential of the church or the spiritual needs of the people. We need to rediscover the biblical vision of stewardship of all things in all seasons - and within that the meaning of giving as a way of life." Covers a broad range of topics for stewardship in the life of a congregation. Very readable.

    DYNAMICS OF CHURCH FINANCE. James D. Berkley. Grand Rapids, Mich. : Baker Books, 2000. 159pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV770 .B475 2000
    A concise yet practical guide to issues surrounding church stewardship. Planning and budgeting, collecting and recording, spending and giving of church moneys are discussed in this clear and well-organized book for those in pastoral and support positions. Whether a young pastor seeks guidance on budgeting and finance or a seasoned servant needs a quick review of church financial responsibilities, The Dynamics of Church Finance provides detailed and up-to-date information to build confidence and sound financial practice. Pastor Berkley begins with the theological model of stewardship and then applies it throughout the chapters, incorporating real-life stories to demonstrate financial principles. One chapter discusses the intricacies of capital campaigns for fund-raising; another reviews the legal and tax matters every pastor should know. Additional resources for further reading are at the conclusion of each chapter.
    [Church finance]

    EFFECTIVE CHURCH FINANCES : FUND-RAISING AND BUDGETING FOR CHURCH LEADERS. Kennon L. Callahan. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1997. 166pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772 .C353 1997
    Written for committee members, key leaders, pastors, and church staff, this detailed study explores

  • developing the church budget -- how effective church finances advance mission, how to set a four-year plan, how to invest wisely in your congregation's mission
  • fund-raising for the budget -- how to organize giving campaigns and develop campaign strategy objectives and organizations, plus tips on selecting fund-raisers
  • setting giving goals for the congregation -- how giving patterns fluctuate, how to pinpoint your congregation's giving pattern, how to develop a baseline budget projection, how unexpected developments can affect your congregation's giving
  • growing the giving from year to year -- how it is easier to raise money than to cut the budget, how to practice the gift of encouragement, how to understand and develop differing practices of giving, and how to develop an enduring gifts program.
    When these are carried out with a passion for mission, rather than in a business-as-usual maintenance mode, then the mission and the church finances are strengthened, enriched, and advanced.
    [Christian giving]
    [Church fund raising]

    EMPOWERING YOU TO HELP : RESOURCES FOR FAITH-BASED NONPROFITS. Jenai Morehead. Lincoln, NE : iUniverse Inc, 2003. 54pp. Funding Center (1 East) HV530 .M67 2003
    Basic fundraising and proposal writing guidance for leaders of faith-based organizations.
    [Proposal writing for grants]
    [Religious institutions -- research grants]
    [Federal aid to nonprofit organizations]

    ENSURE THE FUTURE : HOW SYNAGOGUES AND DAY SCHOOLS CAN COMPETE IN THE PHILANTHROPIC MARKETPLACE. Lorne S. Miller. Willowdale, Ontario: Lorne Miller & Associates, Inc., 2001. 133pp. Remote Storage HV41.2 .M54 2001
    A fundraising primer covering the work of both volunteers and professional staff concerned with Jewish institutions. Explains the precepts of Jewish philanthropic tradition, and introduces several types of fundraising strategies: establishing a public foundation, planned gifts, annual appeals, and capital campaigns, among others.
    [Synagogue fund raising]
    [Jewish day schools -- Finance]
    [Educational fund raising]

    EQUIPPING THE SAINTS : A GUIDE TO GIVING TO FAITH-BASED ORGANIZATIONS Barbara J. Elliott. Temptleton Foundation Press, 2005. 86pp. Funding Center (1 East) HV530 .E55 2004
    For anyone who has ever considered giving money to a faith-based organization, this guide is indispensable. Equipping the Saints will help eliminate donor's remorse by offering sage advice on what makes an effective program, the qualities of good leaders, and the methods of evaluating outcomes. Based on hundreds of interviews with donors and civic leaders, Equipping the Saints distills their wisdom into hands-on recommendations. Barbara Elliott draws from years of experience working with faith-based organizations and the donors who support them to provide a candid look at the unique strengths and weaknesses of these groups. Equipping the Saints is packed with useful tools like a donor's interest inventory, a checklist for making a site visit, and tips on reading nonprofit financial statements --all authored by professional philanthropic advisors.
    [Church charities -- United States]
    [Endowments -- United States]
    [Church charities -- United States -- Evaluation]

    EXTRAORDINARY MONEY : UNDERSTANDING THE CHURCH CAPITAL CAMPAIGN. Michael D. Reeves. October 2002. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .R44 2002
    Reeves helps church leaders examine the issues involved in developing and carrying out a capital fundraising campaign. Extraordinary Money is not a capital campaign program; rather, it is an excellent tool to help churches determine if a capital campaign suits their setting, then, if so, select an appropriate program and carry it through successfully. Primary users: Leaders in congregations that are considering entering into a capital campaign to raise funds for major projects or debt reduction. Secondary users: district superintendents and district committees on church building and location.
    [Church fund raising]

    FAITH-BASED GRANTS : ALIGNING YOUR CHURCH TO RECEIVE ABUNDANCE. [Beverly A. Browning]. Buckeye, Ariz. : Bev Browning & A$$ociate$, c2005. 165pp. Funding Center (1 East) HV530 .B767 2005
    [Church charities -- United States -- Finance]
    The book was written to guide churches and other ministry groups how to position themselves to receive what remains of the Federal faith-based grantmaking initiative -- in other words, "How to get a piece of the pie before the pie is gone." In 168 pages of detailed information, the author guides readers on how to conduct an organizational needs assessment; strategic funding plan; file for a separate IRS nonprofit status (application form and guidelines are appended); create community partnerships, and more! Remember, the author is a grant writer, so in Chapter 8: Writing Right is where she shares her expertise in this area. In all, this 10-chapter workbook is a great self-guiding tool for faith-based groups.
    [Faith-based human services -- United States -- Finance]
    [Church fund raising -- United States -- Handbooks, manuals, etc.]
    [Proposal writing for grants -- United States -- Handbooks, manuals, etc.]
    [Federal aid to nonprofit organizations -- United States.]

    FAITH-BASED INITIATIVES AND THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION : THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY. Jo Renee Formicola, Mary C. Segers, and Paul Weber. Lanham, Md. : Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2003. 224pp. Remote Storage HV95 .F59 2003
    Offers several perspectives on the president's efforts to steer government money to religious groups that provide social services. The authors -- all professors of political science -- discuss the strengths and weaknesses of Mr. Bush's ideas. Ms. Formicola, at Seton Hall U., in South Orange, N.J., Ms. Segers, at Rutgers U. at Newark, in New Jersey, and Mr. Weber, at the U. of Louisville, in Kentucky, explore whether the effort encroaches on the separation of church and state and whether it encourages discriminatory hiring practices. The book also includes a case study of a New Jersey effort to involve religious organizations in community-development projects. The authors give their opinions on how a program that involves greater cooperation between religious organizations and government might be able to overcome some of the obstacles that have made it difficult for the Bush administration to fully accomplish its efforts to help religious groups.
    [Federal aid to public welfare -- United States]
    [Federal aid to human services -- United States]
    [Church charities -- Government policy -- United States]
    [Church charities -- United States -- Finance]
    [Church and state -- United States]

    FAITH-BASED MANAGEMENT : LEADING ORGANIZATIONS THAT ARE BASED ON MORE THAN JUST MISSION. Peter C. Brinckerhoff. New York : John Wiley, c1999. 250pp. Funding Center (1 East) BL632 .B75 1999
    Written for staff members, policy setters, and volunteers of faith-based organizations. Chapters include: The Special Calling of the Faith-Based Organization; The Characteristics of a Successful Faith-Based Organization; The Duties of Staff and Board; Staff Management; Financial Stewardship; Leadership in the Faith-Based Organization; Faith-Based Marketing; Vision and Planning; Getting the Most From Your Volunteers; Final Thoughts; and Resources for Further Study.
    [Religious institutions -- Management]

    FINANCING AMERICAN RELIGION. Mark Chaves and Sharon L. Miller. Walnut Creek, Ca. :AltaMira Press, 1999. 196pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772 .F47 1999
    Money always has been a subject of deep concern for religious leaders. In recent decades, however, this perennial concern has taken on a new urgency as a crisis situation is perceived. Financing American Religion brings together short, readable essays representing the best, most up-to-date research and thinking on the intersections of money and religion. Sociologists, historians, economists, and theologians ask who gives, how much, and why. They investigate how money moves and how it affects religious organizational behavior. And throughout they explore how attitudes toward money have altered over time. Religious leaders and scholars of American religion will welcome this much-needed volume.
    [Christian giving]

    FUNDRAISING AND FELLOWSHIP : EXCITING FAILSAFE IDEAS FOR YOUTH. Mary Ann Zierler-Jasiak. Notre Dame, In. : Ave Maria Press, 2002. 106pp. Funding Center (1 East) BX2347.8.Y7 Z54 2002
    Fundraising projects and strategies that young people can use to enhance church programs. Includes worksheets and other planning documents.
    [Church fund raising]

    FUNDRAISING FOR CHURCHES : 12 KEYS TO SUCCESS EVERY CHURCH LEADER SHOULD KNOW. Linda Wise McNay, PhD, Sarah B. Matthews, CFRE. Nashville, TN : Charity Channel Press, [2017] 113pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .M36 2017
    "Fundraising for Churches was written because your church or faith-based organization needs to raise money, including annual operating support as well as capital and endowment funds for building and maintenance. The authors, Linda Wise McNay, PhD and Sarah B. Mathews, CFRE, believe that churches and other faith-based organizations need to become more adept at raising funds, just like any other type of nonprofit. McNay and Mathews explain that no longer can we be idle bystanders and passively wait to see what comes in the collection plate or depend on people to embrace tithing. In this powerful book they show us, step-by-step, that there are things we can do to help the process along. Fundraising for Churches: 12 Keys to Success Every Church Leader Should Know is written with church leaders in mind -- whether they are clergy or other staff members, or lay leaders and volunteers. By the time you have finished reading it, you will have a clear understanding of how to raise meaningful dollars. More to the point, you will have the confidence to launch a highly ambitious and successful fundraising campaign."
    [Church fund raising]

    When you run a fund-raising event, there is always a risk that you and your organization could lose rather than make money. In most cases, proper planning and organizing can minimize the risk. In this book,the author guides the reader through all the critical phases of running a fund-raising event which includes: Planning, Organizing, Developing, Marketing, Running, Measuring and Assessing. Note: Abbreviated version available at http://www.brownwalker.com/upb/pdf-b/1126611b.pdf
    [Fund raising]
    [Church fund raising]
    [Nonprofit organizations--finance]

    GET WELL! STAY WELL! : PRESCRIPTIONS FOR A FINANCIALLY HEALTHY CONGREGATION. Wayne C. Barrett. Nashville: Discipleship Resources, 1997. Request through interlibrary loan.
    Using the metaphor of health -- a balance between various needs, the author places financial stewardship into the context of the balance of various needs in a healthy congregation. In ten easy-to-read chapters, the author guides the reader to: decipher the current reality of the congregation's financial system; describes the financial potential of the congregation; makes suggestions for change in the way the congregation's financial system operates; etc.

    GREAT FUNDRAISING IDEAS FOR YOUTH GROUPS : OVER 150 EASY-TO-USE MONEY-MAKERS THAT REALLY WORK. David Lynn. Grand Rapids, MI : Zondervan, 1993. 160pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV4447 .L96 1993
    Every youth group needs to raise money -- but too often, you feel stuck with the same old ideas: car washes, spaghetti suppers, and candy bar sales. Now your days of fundraising drudgery are over! Here, for the first time, is a collection of over 150 creative ways to raise money for your youth group activities, mission trips, and charity projects. If you struggle with a limited budget, these proven ideas will help you raise the cash you need -- fast! You'll find: - six quick and easy ways to make at least $1,000 - money-making social events - ecologically sound fundraisers - creative auctions, pledge-a-thons, and publishing projects -- In addition, you'll find tips for developing a fundraising philosophy -- crucial to getting the backing of your church and supporters. You'll find out how to promote your fundraisers. And finally, you'll learn how to thank your supporters in ways that make them feel needed and appreciated. With the help of Great Fundraising Ideas for Youth Groups, not only will your youth group raise money they need, but they'll have fun doing it!
    Also listed under Grantsmanship Techniques
    [Church fund raising]

    GROWING GIVERS' HEARTS : TREATING FUNDRAISING AS MINISTRY. Thomas H. Jeavons and Rebekah Burch Basinger. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass Publishers, 2000. 211pp. Main Library Stacks BV772.5 .J43 2000
    Contents : Creating resources for God's work -- What the Bible says about giving and asking -- A brief history of Christian fundraising -- Confidence in God's abundance -- A holistic perspective on 'kingdom work' -- Clarity about core theological beliefs -- Giving donors opportunities for participation -- Integrated organizational planning -- Spiritually mature leadership -- Fundraising as a calling -- Fundraising as an invitation to cooperate with God's grace -- References -- The authors.
    [Church fund raising]

    LOST ART OF CHURCH FUND RAISING. Ashley Hale. Chicago, Ill. : Precept Press, 1993. 149pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .H28 1993
    This book is dedicated solely to the special financial challenges facing religious institutions. An essential resource, Hale provides hands-on materials to guide you through your campaign simply and successfully. Part philosophy, part how-to handbook, The Lost Art of Church Fund Raising helps your church realize its true fund-raising potential. Learn how to utilize strategic planning, through your church's "first-choice" leaders and volunteers, to achieve campaign goals.
    [Church fund raising]

    MARKETING FOR CONGREGATIONS : CHOOSING TO SERVE PEOPLE MORE EFFECTIVELY. Norman Shawchuck, Kotler, Wrenn, and Rath. Nashville, Tn. : Abingdon Press, 1992. 424pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV652 .M37 1992
    This first-of-its-kind book provides the tools for leaders to guide responsive religious institutions and helps the reader overcome objections to marketing religion. It includes marketing plans for congregrations, sample ads that really work, and business terms translated into words that church and synagogue leaders understand. It discusses how to face change and crisis, approach people in the right spirit to find out what they need and want, energize memebers and volunteers, communicate with key audiences, attract needed resources, and become more responsive to members.
    [Church management]

    MONEY MATTERS: PERSONAL GIVING IN AMERICAN CHURCHES. Dean R. Hoge. Louisville, Ky. : Westminster John Knox Press, 1996. 248pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772 .M527 1996
    Based on an extensive survey which turned up some surprising results.
    [Christian giving -- Case studies]

    MORE THAN MONEY : PORTRAITS OF TRANSFORMATIVE STEWARDSHIP. Patrick H. McNamara. An Alban Institute Publication, 1999. Request through interlibrary loan.
    A wondrous journey to 11 congregations (Congregational, UCC, Disciples of Christ, Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian) across the United States that have been transformed by living out stewardship that is more than fund-raising. Common themes for these congregations include: a working theology of stewardship, pastoral leadership, an emphasis on the actual experience of God's grace, a commitment to service, and people bold in calling each other to give. Be forewarned, however, stewardship must be contextualized in the differences and particularities of each congregation.

    PASSING THE PLATE : WHY AMERICAN CHRISTIANS DON'T GIVE AWAY MORE MONEY. Christian Smith and Michael O. Emerson, with Patricia Snell. Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2008. 270pp. Main Library Stacks BV772 .S611 2008
    "When it comes to sharing their money, most contemporary American Christians are remarkably ungenerous," write Michael O. Emerson, a sociology professor at Rice University; Christian Smith, a sociology professor at the University of Notre Dame; and Patricia Snell, a religion and sociology researcher, also at Notre Dame. In 2005, Christians who attended church regularly earned more than $2-trillion but donated less than 1 percent of that figure to charitable causes. Christian churches generally advocate tithing about 10 percent of one's annual income each year. The authors write that the goal of their book is not to condemn stingy Christians, but to understand and explain this lack of generosity from a sociological perspective. The authors used data from church records, Internal Revenue Service charitable-contribution reports, and government reports based on U.S. Department of Labor Consumer Expenditure Surveys to gather information about Christian giving. They also conducted their own study on tithing, and interviewed 77 Christian pastors and church members. In the chapter "Toward Explaining Ungenerous Giving," the authors present nine hypotheses about why Christians give so little, and evaluate each. For example, they write, most American Christians may not perceive legitimate needs for their money, or they may be suspicious of waste and abuse by nonprofit administrators. The book includes an appendix with different denominations' teachings on charitable giving. Table of contents: Introduction: The riddle of stingy Christian giving -- Giving to change the world -- Failed generosity -- Toward explaining ungenerous giving -- The view from pulpits and pews -- A mental experiment in raised expectations -- Conclusion -- Appendix A: Christian church teachings -- Appendix B: Data sources used in analyses -- Appendix C: Multivariate regressions on charitable giving
    [Christian giving]

    THE PASTOR'S GUIDE TO FUND-RAISING SUCCESS. Dorsey E. Levall and Wayne E. Groner. Chicago, Il. : Bonus Books, 1999. 209pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .L45 1999
    Many church leaders find soliciting donations to be an uncomfortable, even stressful task. The challenge for pastors is to find meaningful ways to teach that money and personal values go hand in hand. The book examines annual giving, capital, and endowment campaigns, noting when it is appropriate for churches to conduct them. Also details the whole fund-raising process, from identifying prospective donors to writing thank you notes. Includes a glossary of fund-raising terms, a list of web resources, and sample contracts for consultants.
    [Church fund raising]

    PLAIN TALK ABOUT CHURCHES AND MONEY. Dean Hoge, Patrick McNamara, Charles Zech, final chapter by Loren B. Mead. Bethesda, Md. : Alban Institute, 1997. 138pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .H65 1997
    First in the series, Plain Talk tackles resistance, fears, and difficulties concerning money issues. Based on extensive research for their earlier book (Money Matters, WJL, 1996), this volume offers insight and help on the key fiscal topics confronting church leaders and congregations today, including: -- Why is the church so uneasy with the topic of money? -- Is there a difference between stewardship and fundraising? -- How can we motivate giving? -- Should we invest church funds? Church leaders at all levels, seminarians, and adult educators will find this an important tool for understanding and engaging congregations in discussion.
    [Church fund raising]
    [Christian giving]
    [Church finance]

    THE PRACTICE OF STEWARDSHIP IN RELIGIOUS FUNDRAISING. Daniel Conway AND Cecelia Hart Price. San Francisco, Ca. : Jossey-Bass, 1997. 91pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .P73 1997
    New Directions for Philanthropic Fundraising #17
    Contents: 1. Interview with Henry Rosso on Stewardship and Fundraising (Daniel Conway); 2. Giving from the Heart: Stewardship as Way of Life (Archbishop Thomas J. Murphy); 3. Stewards for Whom? Problems with Stewardship as a Model for Fundraising (Thomas H. Jeavons); 4. Rediscovering Accountability (John Ronsvalle & Sylvia Ronsvalle); 5. Stumbling Stones of the Steward (Mark R. Dollhopf); 6. Implications for Fundraising Practitioners (Cecelia Hart Price).
    New directions for philanthropic fundraising ; no. 17 (Fall 1997)
    [Fund raising]
    [Christian giving]

    PROVEN PRINCIPLES FOR FINDING FUNDS : A GUIDE FOR CHURCH AND NONPROFIT LEADERS. Chester L. Tolson. Grand Rapids, MI : Baker Books, 2003. 185pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .T69 2003
    Explains why people give to churches and discusses references to giving in the Bible. Elaborates on the needs of a growing church and describes ways to fund expansion. Other topics include capital campaigns, planned giving, and endowments.
    [Church fund raising]

    READY TO GO FUNDRAISERS : 75 WAYS TO FUND YOUR MINISTRY. Nashville, TN : Abingdon Press, 2007. 112PP. BV772.5 .F86 2007 Online
    Ready-to-Go Fundraisers provides youth ministers with a variety of fun and effective fundraising ideas, including old standards and digital-age alternatives,from embarrassingly simple to exhaustingly complex, projects that foster fellowship and community to projects that have a global impact. The book also contains a chapter on grant-writing.
    [Church fund raising]

    REVOLUTIONIZING CHRISTIAN STEWARDSHIP FOR THE 21ST CENTURY : LESSON FROM COPERNICUS. Dan R. Dick. Discipleship Resources, 1997. Request through interlibrary loan.
    "The world is changing at lightning speed. How does the church respond? ... One approach places the institution of the church at the center and asks, 'What do people need to do in order to be part of what we are?' The second approach asks, 'What does the church need to be to connect people to God through Jesus Christ?' The first concept places the church at the center, while the second recognizes God as the center. With the church at the center, we create members. With God at the center, we create disciples and stewards. ... The goal of Christian stewardship is life-changing transformation."

    SERVING THOSE IN NEED : A HANDBOOK FOR MANAGING FAITH-BASED HUMAN SERVICES ORGANIZATIONS. Edward L. Queen II, editor. San Francisco : Jossey-Bass, c2000. 305pp. Remote Storage HV91 .S37 2000
    Aims to help service providers do their work better, avoid mistakes, and improve their skills. Introduction, The meaning of faith-based human services, Edward Queen; Part One: Preparing for Service. 1. Religion and the Emerging Context of Service Delivery, Edward Queen. 2. Congregations and Social Ministry-Preparation and Development, Carl Dudley. 3. Congregations and Communities Working Together, John Kretzmann Part Two: Capacity Building. 4 .Building and Sustaining Lay Leadership: Boards and Mission, James B. Lemler. 5. Funding the Dream, Sara Ann Robertson. 6. Stakeholder Analysis as a Tool for Faith-Based Organizations, Mary Tschirhart and Eric Knueve. 7. Developing Financial Accountability and Controls, John Zietlow. 8. Volunteerism and Organized Religion, Ram A. Cnaan and Gaynor I. Yancey. 9. Finding Help and Advice at the School Next Door: Working with Academic Institutions, Art Farnsley. 10. Money with (Some) Strings, Stephen Monsma. 11. Working with Foundations, Edward Queen. Part Three: Beyond Basic Needs. 12. Community-Based Economic Development, Eric Clay and Elliott Wright. 13. The Role of Local Congregations in Facilitating the Delivery of Health Care Services, Sandra Burgener. 14. Religion in the `Hood: Faith-based Initiatives with High Risk Youth, Harold Dean Trulear.
    [Human services -- United States -- Management]
    [Church charities -- United States -- Management]

    SEVEN DEADLY DISEASES OF MINISTRY MARKETING. Akron, OH: Berkey Brendel Sheline. 2006 Revised Edition. 188pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV653 .B743 1998
    Sick of Fundraising? Here's the RX for your ministry. Veteran fundraiser Doug Brendel reveals crucial secrets for successful marketing of Christian charities -- and along the way offers a fun and fascinating glimpse into the inner working of numerous ministries. Here you'll find the most common -- but often the most ignored -- errors that ministries make in trying to raise money. But Seven Deadly Diseases provides preventative medicine as well as prescriptions for remedies.
    [Religious institutions -- Marketing]
    [Fund raising]

    SPEAKING OF STEWARDSHIP : MODEL SERMONS ON MONEY AND POSSESSIONS. William G. Carter, editor. Geneva Press, Louisville, Kentucky, 1998. Request through interlibrary loan.
    Compare your preaching to 23 model sermons including, 'The Top Five Reasons Why I Don't Tithe Yet.' and 'Don't Touch the Chicken Until We See If They Are Hungry.' Worth it for the introduction alone. Also includes a bibliography.

    STARTING A NONPROFIT AT YOUR CHURCH. Joy Skjegstad. Alban Press, 2002. 203pp. Funding Center (1 East) HD62.6 .S55 2002
    A large and growing number of congregations are setting up church-based nonprofit organizations in order to operate community development or educational programs. Once formed, the nonprofit structure allows for new opportunities for accessing additional funding and drawing new collaborative partners and volunteers into the ministry. Joy Skjegstad outlines the step-by-step procedures for setting up a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization connected to a congregation using simple, easy-to-understand terminology and plenty of examples from churches that have already taken on this task. In addition to accessible and specific information on the legal aspects of a church-based nonprofit, topics include: (1) Why set up a nonprofit?; (2) Advantages and disadvantages to setting up a nonprofit; (3) Assessing readiness for the challenge; (4) Defining the nonprofit’s mission and niche; (5) Accountability and control; (6)Establishing a board structure and defining board roles; (7) Maintaining a positive relationship with the congregation; (8) Personnel issues; (9) Developing a fundraising plan; (10)Ongoing evaluation. Whether a congregation is setting up new program or has an established nonprofit that needs to be restructured or redefined, congregations will find helpful guidance in this practical, experience-based book. Foreword by Mary Nelson, President, Bethel New Life, Inc., Chicago.
    [Nonprofit organizations --law and legislation]

    SUCCESSFUL CHURCH FUND-RAISING : CAPITAL CAMPAIGNS YOU CAN DO YOURSELF. John R. Bisagno. Nashville, TN: Boradman & Holman Publishers, 2002. 130pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .B57 2002
    Directed to ministers and others responsible for churches and congregations, the book outlines the principles of campaigns for raising funds to enable new buildings or the purchase of land. Covers pledges, committee structures, special events, and also provides suggested sermons that can inspire donors.
    Also called Capital Campaigns You Can Do Yourself
    [Church fund raising]

    WITH GENEROUS HEARTS : HOW TO RAISE CAPITAL FUNDS FOR YOUR CHURCH, CHURCH SCHOOL, CHURCH AGENCY, OR REGIONAL CHURCH BODY. Glenn N. Holliman and by Barbara L. Holliman. Ridgefield, Ct. : Morehouse Publishing, 1997. 71pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .H653 1997
    This practical, step-by-step guide to successful fund raising has been assembled by two of the most respected practitioners in the field. With Generous Hearts explains the basics of the four types of fund raising activities: annual giving, capital campaigns, planned giving, and special events. It outlines the fundamental principles that encourage giving and tells how to avoid common mistakes that will derail a campaign before it begins.
    [Fund raising]
    [Church finance]

    YOU CAN RUN A CAPITAL CAMPAIGN : RAISING FUNDS FOR SPECIAL PURPOSES : A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE FOR CHURCH LEADERS. John William Zehring. Nashville, Tenn. : Abingdon Press, 1989. 45pp. Funding Center (1 East) BV772.5 .Z44 1989
    A handbook for church leaders with little or no fund-raising experience on how to raise money for special church projects.
    [Church fund raising]

    Additional Web Pages of Interest

    Catalog of Nonprofit Literature
    Want to use a database to find articles to read? Check out this searchable database. It incorporates the unique contents of the Foundation Center's five libraries and contains more than 24,900 full bibliographic citations, of which more than 17,000 have descriptive abstracts. Updated daily. Items covered deal with everything from the theory and philosophy of philanthropy, biographies of philanthropists, administration and management of nonprofits, and materials issued by foundations or nonprofit organizations. Sample search: enter "fundraising" as subject and "church" as a keyword. Ask your local library if they carry the journals or books cited. If not ask about Interlibrary Loan.
    (Last checked 06/01/2017)

    Grants for Nonprofits: Religion and Social Change lists numerous books and web sites identifying sources of funding for religion and social change.

    Grants for Individuals: Religion covers financial aid sources related to religion.

    If you are interested in more books about fundraising, proposal writing, and related topics, review the following bibliography arranged in alphabetical order by title:  

    A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I-L | M-O | P-Q | R-S | T-Z

    If you are interested in video titles on proposal writing and related topics, review Video Titles Only

    Additional web sites on

    are also available.



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