Stewardship is recognizing that everything we have is a gift from God. It’s living a life of intentional gratitude and generosity. Our Christian faith calls us to show our gratitude through regular prayer, participation in parish life and generosity to support the Church.
Stewardship Awareness Sunday is observed the weekend of Sept. 23-24 in parishes in the Archdiocese of St. Louis. This year’s theme is “Stewardship is a New Beginning,” from the Book of Revelation: “Behold, I make all things new … I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give a gift from the spring of life-giving water” (Revelation 21: 5-6).
We have a responsibility for our own lives as well as the lives of others. We are called to generously share our gifts with others and not keep them only for our own use. Our sincere gratitude and cheerful generosity will help us live God-centered lives.
Here are some ways to have a discipleship-minded approach to personal stewardship:
Prayer — We encounter God’s love.
Developing a prayer life starts with cultivating a position of gratitude. Prayer should focus on a one-to-one conversation with God throughout your day. Here are some ways to develop a healthy prayer life:
•Begin with thanking God for whatever you are grateful for today.
•Revisit your day and identify the times you were and were not the best version of yourself. Talk with God about what you learned from the situations.
•Look for something you experienced today and what God might be trying to say to you.
•Ask God to forgive you for any wrongs you have committed and to fill you with peace.
•Speak with God about how He is inviting you to change your life, so you may have the freedom to be the best version of yourself.
•Pray for others, asking God to bless and guide them.
Participation – We are enlightened by God’s love.
Discern your God-given charisms, also known as gifts of the Holy Spirit. Take the Spiritual Gifts Inventory discover your spiritual gifts. To learn more, contact Jane Guenther with the archdiocesan Catholic Renewal Center at
[email protected] or (314) 792-7734.
•Join a parish ministry that aligns with your spiritual gifts. Doing so helps us build God’s kingdom on earth.
•When we share our charisms with others, we move from a mindset of obligation to doing something out of love.
•Evangelization is a desire to share God’s love with others.
Generosity – We engage in God’s love.
The byproduct of gratitude is generosity. With a grateful mindset, we are called to give to God from our first fruits. That means making a plan for giving to His Church. Through planning, we can better achieve our part to share the gifts that God has given us.
•Create and maintain a household budget.
•Plan your giving annually.
•Use your parish’s electronic offering (if available).
Annual giving opportunities include offertory, the Annual Catholic Appeal, second collections, parish capital campaign and community charities.
The Office of Stewardship offers a My Catholic Giving Guide to make a plan for personal stewardship: stlreview.com/3PrHi3f