2. FINANCIALLY SELF-RELIANT CHURCH

2. FINANCIALLY SELF-RELIANT CHURCH

 Remember that the person who sows few seeds will have a small crop;the one who sows many seeds will have a large crop.Each one should give, then ,as he has decided, not with regret or out of a sense of mere duty;for God loves the one who gives gladly.And God is able to give you more than you need,so that you will always have all  you need for yourselves and more than enough for every good cause. As the scripture say: “He gives generously to the needy;his kindness lasts forever.” And God who supplies seed to sow and bread to eat,will also supply you with all you need and will make it grow and produce a rich harvest from your generosity.He will always make you rich enough to be generous at all times,so that many will thank God for your gifts which they receive from us.For this service you perform not only meets the needs of God’s people ,but also produces an outpouring of grateful thanks to God.

(2 Corinthians 9,6 – 12).

Catholics need to be taught about their financial responsibilities towards their  parish and diocese as a concrete expression of their love and gratitude to God. Parish finance committees should be up to date with the administration of parish funds and give quarterly reports to the parish as well as to the diocesan office for evaluation in terms of budget expectations for the year. Such administration and reporting expresses appreciation for the support of the people and affirms the necessary trust which needs to be maintained between the community and those in charge of the financial administration of the parish. Financial accountability of Catholics should always be related to parish and diocesan pastoral needs. The diocesan policy and guidelines for administration of parish funds should be followed by all parishes in a transparent way. The giving of time, talent and money should be understood as normal in a spiritually healthy parish life. People need to be continually motivated and educated to give financial support to their parish and diocese in view of the vision of the diocese to be more self-reliant. Even if people go to the cities for jobs, they should maintain support of the parish of origin while they are still members of their home parish. Fund-raising projects should be planned for the year especially for maintenance of buildings and vehicles, and also for the annual seminarians fund and diocesan fund.

 

Precisely in this context the Synod Fathers emphasized how necessary it is for each Christian community to be organized so that as far as possible it can providefor its own needs.Besides qualified personnel,evangelization requires material and financial means,and the Dioceses are often far from possessing them in sufficient measure.It is therefore urgent that the particular Churches in Africa have the objective of providing for their own needs as soon as possible,thereby assuring their self-sufficiency.Consequently I invite the Episcopal Conferences, Dioceses and all the Christian communities of the continent’s Churches,insofar as it is within their competence,to see to it that this self-sufficiency becomes increasingly evident.(Ecclesia in Africa 104).