The Finance Council of St. Regis Parish, with the approval of the pastor/moderator and Pastoral Council, agreed to set aside yearly monies, as part of the normal process of budgeting, to be used for charitable works outside the usual scope of parish own needs or outreaches. In short, to become a ‘tithing parish’ by offering some of the parish’s ‘first fruits’ for the work of God and in the service of caring for humanity in the way our Catholic teaching guides us.
Please look over the FAQs below and either nominate a charity or apply on behalf of your charity for one the grants, if you believe your organization fits the criteria listed. Thank you.
St. Regis Parish encourages all of its members to adopt what is called a ‘tithing approach’ to sharing their time and energy, gifts and talents, money and material donations in the service of God. Although the word literally means ‘one-tenth’, what is meant by a ‘tithing approach’ is an attitude of generous stewardship of our resources, not a specific amount or percentage. In the Bible, God’s people are asked to give the ‘first fruits’ of their labor to the work of God and his people; to trust that such generosity will always be a blessing to them.
What we encourage from each parish member we now want to do as a whole parish, in order to model that ongoing commitment to generous stewardship.
Our parish’s ‘first fruits’ are the Sunday and holyday donations, any Year-end or special donations, and any C.S.A. donations over and above our mandated goal that come back to the parish for its own use. As a first step in being a ‘tithing parish’ the parish budget will set aside up to 4% of these monies, to be used for tithing grants in the following fiscal year. Over the past few years that would mean an average of about $40,000 per year.
A ’tithing committee’ has been appointed by the pastor/moderator and approved by the Finance Council, with the responsibility of recommending how these yearly monies are to be used in charitable grants to qualifying groups/outreaches. The committee is composed of five members: one from the Finance Council, one from the Evangelical Charity (Christian Service) Commission, two at-large parish members, and the business manager acting as the parish staff representative.
Grants will be considered in three categories: smaller, significant, and substantial. A portion of the yearly tithing monies (up to a total of $7,000 yearly) will be set aside for smaller grants (anything $1000 or less). These can include requests for sponsoring ads or tables for annual banquets, as well as requests for direct donations and will be at the discretion of the pastor/moderator and the Finance Council. Such smaller grants may be given yearly to the same organizations or given to new organizations each year. The remainder portion of the tithing monies will be set aside for significant (>$1000) or even substantial (>$10,000) grants. Because such larger grants are not to be used for regular operating expenses but for specific added charitable outreach, ordinarily such larger grants would be a one time only grant with a maximum of three years help.
The following criteria will be used in determining suitable agencies for the grants:
- Not for profit charitable organization
- Aligned with Catholic Social Teaching:
- Respects and promotes dignity of all human life from the unborn to natural death
- Works for the common good (outreach involves helping basic human needs)
- Preferential option for the poor and vulnerable (reaches out to those who are most in need and marginal)
- Participatory (brings those it is helping into its leadership and planning)
- Financially stable (grant is not needed for basic expenses) and financially transparent
- Located in southeast Michigan and outreach to this area
- Use of money has clear goal and benefit that can be demonstrated
- All else being equal, preference given each year to awarding:
- Catholic and Christian-affiliated outreaches
- Up to two organizations with more substantial grants (>$10,000); if possible, one organization that witnesses to evangelical charity (Service) and one that witnesses to evangelization
- Several organizations with significant grants (>$1000)
- Outreaches that invite volunteer opportunities (including families and children)
The committee will ordinarily accept grant applications up to the end of October in a given year and then meet to make recommendations to the Finance Council. Grant monies will be distributed before the end of the fiscal year (June 30th) or when appropriate. Any monies not used on grants remains in the Tithing Savings Account for future use.
To Recommend an Outreach/Charity for a Grant, please download the Grant Nomination Form Tithing Grant Application Form, fill it out and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org/.
If you are a charitable organization and are applying for a grant directly, please download and fill out the Grant Application Form and email it to email@example.com/.