by Marc Wymore
One of the many blessings that is required in preparation of planting a church, is fundraising. If you are more introverted and aren’t comfortable painting the picture of your vision and asking for support, this can feel like the greatest curse. I have met with multiple church planters who are clear about their vision, but reserved about asking for support to fund that vision. When raising support for any cause, including church planting, here are a few ways to approach the process.
1. Lower your expectations of people and raise your expectation of God.
In this journey, you have to be ready to be told no, not yet, or maybe. I have found to lower my expectation of people. This is God’s vision for HIS church. If they say no to me, I’m ok because this is His church. Accept the ‘no’ and move on. Raise your expectation that God will fund His church how, when, and where He wants to fund it. If you continue to get told no, go to the next step and ask yourself some hard questions.
2. Choose your donor list with wisdom and strategy.
Make a specific list of 50 to 100 donors you are going to approach. Think of parents, colleagues, friends, business owners, and beyond. Take the list and assign each person a number from 1 to 5 based on these three categories;
A. Financial Ability to give: (1-5) Do they have resources to fund my vision?
B. Relationship with me: (1-5) How much trust have we established?
C. Affinity with my organization: (1-5) Do they have an understanding of what we are doing and why?
Add all three categories together and begin meeting face to face or calling each person and/or organization. Once you’ve determined the who you are going to call, begin step 3.
3. Choose which pocket you want them to finance.
When you meet with people and give them what is known as the “elevator pitch,” you have a few moments to discern what pocket they will be open to financing. Here are the four different pockets that people, churches, or organizations can fund.
Personal Pocket- They are giving to you or your family because of the relationship they have with you.
Organization Pocket- They love your organization and the vision of your organization or church.
City Pocket- They may not know you or your church vision, but they love the city you are about to live the mission in, and want to be a part of a larger vision that impacts a community they love.
Church-Planting Pocket- They do not know you, the organization, or the city you are going to, but feel a call to the global initiative of planting churches in every city.
4. NO news is NOT good news.
People are down on what they are not up on! Make sure to give updates, highlights, and newsletters that convey major points of prayer and news. Gratitude is both formal and informal. Go the extra mile to communicate gratitude and appreciation.
Marc Wymore is the pastor of Soul Church in San Diego, CA. In addition to his call to pastor, Marc is a skilled worship leader, songwriter, and creative entrepreneur. He and his wife Bethany have two beautiful children.