As a former warden and the partner of a former warden, I understand the challenges that the Vestry faces every year in keeping Grace not just operating, but thriving. The challenges are even greater this year.
The annual stewardship drive is always a matter of concern. In most years, pledges make up about 70% of Grace’s operating income. While pledge is the major source of this income, it is not the only source. Grace also counts on rental income from its First Avenue houses, as well as rental of Memorial Hall and other spaces (e.g. 12-step groups and private rentals) and monthly donations from the Grace Thrift Shop.
Like everything in our society today, COVID 19 has significantly dented our Income from these other sources and this trend will likely continue as long as COVID impacts our lives. That means that Grace will have to rely on the parish’s pledge contributions even more so for 2021.
We fully understand that COVID 19 has had a deep impact upon all of us. Some people have seen modest or even significant loss of income and are not sure when they will recover. To those in the Grace Community who have been so impacted and are still making pledge contributions – we deeply appreciate the sacrifices you are making.
However, there may very well be some members of the Grace Community who have not seen their incomes impacted at all and for some, their fiscal situation may have actually improved. To those members of our community we ask that if you can, please consider being extra generous this year – your added contributions will help Grace get through this time and emerge from this pandemic as strong and vibrant as ever.
Thank you for your generosity and with your support, we will all get through this interesting time together.