Capital Campaign FAQs
Q: Why are we doing a Capital Campaign and who makes these decisions?
A: The Session of First United Presbyterian Church guides our overall ministry, trusting in the leading of the Holy Spirit. Session members prayerfully consider where energy and excitement within the congregation might be and discern how funds should best be allocated to further the kingdom of God here at FUPC by maintaining and improving current ministries. The Session – after more than a year of prayer, study, conversation with church members, and assessment of the church’s building and grounds – has discerned that now is the time for a Capital Campaign to repair, renovate, and restore parts of the beautiful facility that was given to us as a gift by previous generations.
Q: What is the total cost of the projects included in the Capital Campaign?
A: Approximately $300,000.
Q: Please provide more detail regarding how much money is being allocated for the different parts of the project.
A: See attached document titled First United Presbyterian Statement of Opportunity. Most of the money will be allocated to repairing and restoring the slate roof on the sanctuary. We also will replace the entire roof on the education building. Both roofs need to be repaired before we can consider any other building projects.
Q: Why is the cost to repair the roof so expensive? Why not just get rid of the slate?
A: After extensive investigation it was determined that in order to maintain the integrity of our sanctuary, we should restore our roof versus replacing our roof. We investigated other materials such as rubber and shingles but it was determined that replacement cost would possibly exceed restoration cost. Also, the vast majority of the existing slate is in excellent condition and it was determined that removing it would be a bad decision. The issue with our sanctuary roof has to do with the copper that must be removed and replaced plus the repair of some sections of our slate, as well as repair/replacing rotting wood trim. To be clear, we are restoring our sanctuary roof but replacing our education building roof. The restoration of our sanctuary roof will last for many generations to come. Our contractor estimates 100 plus years.
Q: Why are we spending so much money on repairs if we are going to sell our property?
A: To be clear there has been no decision to sell our property and relocate. Our sanctuary, God willing, will be in place for many, many years to come. First, as a designated historical structure, our sanctuary cannot be demolished or relocated. Second, we still believe God is calling us to remain in uptown Charlotte and to continue to serve the Uptown community. In order to do this, we must maintain our facilities and this capital campaign will make it clear to us on whether or not we have the capacity to do so. This is why your support is extremely important to the continuance of our mission in Uptown Charlotte.
Q: Doesn’t the sanctuary need renovating and updating?
A: Yes. We need to improve accessibility, repair/replace/re-upholster the pews, repair/update the lighting and replace the stain glass protective coverings. We currently are having the sanctuary evaluated to determine the extent and cost of these renovations.
Q: How and when do I make my financial commitment for the Capital Campaign?
A: We will be asking for a personally significant commitment to be paid over the course of three years (through December 2024). You will receive a ‘Commitment’ card in November regarding how you wish to fulfill your commitment during those three years. Commitment Sunday is November 14 during our annual Homecoming celebration.
Q: Does my giving to the Capital Campaign replace my giving to the annual Stewardship Campaign?
A: NO!! Giving to the Operating budget is the priority. Gifts to the capital campaign should be OVER AND ABOVE commitments to the Operating Budget.
Q: Can I give stock or property to the church in lieu of cash?
A: Yes. Please refer to our brochure ‘Creative Strategies in Giving’ which provides an excellent guide on how to provide gifts other than cash. It will be included in the Stewardship materials you receive from the church.
Q: Why did the Session hire a fundraising consultant for the campaign?
A: Data shows that churches that use consultants raise more money than churches that try to try to do the campaign themselves. After reviewing a number of proposals and interviewing a number of consultants, the Session voted to hire Horizons Stewardship. Horizons has worked with over 3,000 churches and assisted them to raise over $1 billion for their facilities as well as to improve their ministries and mission. They are the official capital campaign partner of the Presbyterian Foundation.
Our advisor is Tom Norwood, Senior Vice President with Horizons Stewardship. He is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and has provided stewardship and capital campaign services to a variety of churches and church governing bodies. Tom holds the coveted Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) designation from the Association of Fundraising Professionals and has served on the board of the North Carolina Planned Giving Council. He is a regular speaker at regional and national fundraising and stewardship conferences, and the author of two books and numerous articles in professional and theological journals. You can learn more about Tom and Horizons at www.horizons.net .
Q: Why don’t we raise the funds before commencing each project instead of raising it all at once?
A: The ‘best practice’ advice we received from our consultant was to ask for the funding all at once, because repeatedly asking for funds can cause ‘giving fatigue’. We also felt it would be kinder to the congregation– from a household budget perspective – to have one capital campaign drive and have the funding commitments spread out over three years instead of coming at random intervals.
Q: How do we know First United Presbyterian Church will raise enough money given that over three years some families’ economic status may change and some members may move out of the area?
A: Our advisor indicates that in his experience most people intend to honor their commitments. In some circumstances there may be individual economic status changes that may result in an increase or decrease in the amount committed. Additionally, we will be asking new members to contribute to the campaign.
Q: How much should I give?
A: This is an individual decision and we ask you to prayerfully consider making a personally significant gift. We are hoping that you read the provided materials and pray with us: “Lord, what would you do through me?”
Q: Who sets the budget for the church?
A: The Session of First United Presbyterian is charged, in part, with the overall stewardship of the generosity of the congregation and prayerfully seeks to direct funds that are given to the church in ways that build up the kingdom of God. To this end, the Session sets a yearly Ministry Budget, which is made in consultation with the many ministry areas and committees of the church.
In the budget process Presbyterians differ from other churches in that our entire congregation never votes on an annual budget. Instead, we elect Elders whom we entrust with the task of setting and approving a budget each year. The Session of First United Presbyterian Church will approve a final balanced budget in 2022 and will present it to the congregation for information at the annual meeting of the congregation.
Q: Is the Capital Campaign part of the Ministry Budget?
A: No, it is separate. Our Ministry Budget is an annual budget that funds the day-to-day operation of the church. Basically, it’s what’s required to pay for educational and music ministries, utilities like electricity, and salaries that cover everything from Sunday sermons to the printing of the weekly bulletin. The Capital Campaign is specifically designed to raise funds to cover improvements to the physical church outside of the annual Ministry budget. Capital campaigns are typically infrequent. The last major capital campaign FUPC conducted