2016 Ingathering and Looking Ahead to Convention
Spring for the UTO Board means Holy Week, Ingathering reports, grant application reviews, and the difficult process of selecting which grants will be awarded. It’s also a time to reflect on the collected funds from the Ingathering. This year, we are grateful that 46 of 109 dioceses increased their giving to UTO in 2016. We’ve listed the dioceses that increased their giving in the sidebar so you can see all of the amazing contributions to funds that can be granted by UTO. Of those 46 dioceses, 13 (noted with an asterisk) increased their giving from 2014 to 2015 and again from 2015 to 2016! Awesome work! A big thank you to Province VI, which as a province increased its total giving between 2015 and 2016. There is much to celebrate and give thanks for the 2016 Ingathering. This year we have $1,169,969.55 available to grant. Thank you to everyone who contributed and worked to make it another million-dollar year!
With that said, the 2016 Ingathering total is less than the previous year’s. If we hope to grant the same amount of money this triennium as in the past, we need to ask for your help. One of the hardest tasks in making decisions about grants is seeing really worthwhile ministries go unfunded because we don’t have enough Ingathering funds available. Because of that, we are asking for help from everyone who lives a life of gratitude. It’s a big challenge, but we hope you will participate. Here is how we would like to proceed.
Verify amounts collected. UTO Board members will be contacting their diocesan coordinators over the next few weeks to check whether our reported Ingathering amounts are correct. It is not uncommon to find a couple of checks that have gone missing or were credited to the wrong diocese.
Create a list of giving churches and non-giving churches. We’d also like to get a UTO participation list in each diocese so we can better support dioceses and congregations in practicing the Spiritual Discipline of Gratitude.
Monitor diocesan giving. Additionally, we’re going to provide each diocesan coordinator with parish and individual contacts, in case, for example, a coordinator would need to track down a check or be prepared to confirm diocesan conventions. Remember, all money must be received by December 31, 2017 to be counted in this triennium’s collection. Maybe you want to see how you are doing this triennium compared to the last one? Please check out our Ingathering reports on our blog at www.unitedthankoffering.org. You will find a chart to let you see where each province is compared to last triennium/General Convention. We’ve also provided the ingathering amount for 2017 that has been collected thus far.
How you can help… The UTO team would really love to collect more than the last Convention’s giving, and we hope you’ll help. If we receive a total 2017 Ingathering of $1,973,341.88, or $18,104.05 per diocese, we would equal the amount collected at the last triennium. That may not be realistic, but even if every diocese would set a goal to increase its giving by 20 percent, that would help us award more grants – perhaps one to your diocese. If we would have had the additional $700,000 in 2016 that we are asking for in 2017, all eligible grant applications would have been funded.Please help us meet our goal of increasing the Ingathering over the previous triennium … the last time that happened was in 2003. We will again award prizes to coordinators who have increased giving every year of the triennium and those who have increased two out of three years. Thank you for working so hard and thank you for helping us reach our goal. If we can help you promote UTO in any way, please let Heather know.