Homophones and the UTO Ingathering

November 7, 2019
Kathy Mank, Financial Secretary, United Thank Offering Board

Words that are spelled the same and have different meanings are homophones. Rose is an example – rose the noun is a flower, rose the verb is resurrection or lifting higher. In the United Thank Offering world, change is a defining homophone.

UTO used the motto “Our Change, Changes Lives” until we found that it was copyrighted by another organization. Change as a noun is commonly known as monetary coins. Change as a verb is to affect a new result.

We have changed our tag line from, “Put gifts into the blue box with thanksgiving, prayer and generosity,” to “Notice the Good Things That Happen Each Day, Give Thanks to God for Your Blessing, Make an Offering for Each Blessing.” What has not changed is the gratitude that results in both the giver and receiver of Ingathering funds. We give thanks for those who participate in the daily practice of gratitude.

With relatively new banking technology, coin change is not always readily available. As a result, UTO launched an app for cell phones that facilitates credit or debit card transactions (“UTO Blue Box” in the App Store). The Episcopal Church website also accepts UTO credit card transactions. In addition, UTO gratefully accepts checks at our lockbox:

United Thank Offering
DFMS – Protestant Episcopal Church
P.O. Box 958983
St. Louis, MO 63195-8983

UTO operates on a calendar year. For credit in 2019, we request that Ingathering checks be mailed by Dec. 10 so that they are received before Dec. 15 – prior to year-end close at DFMS.

At the last General Convention and Triennial, UTO rolled a recommended change in procedure for collecting the Ingathering for optimal stewardship. We asked that congregations and dioceses count their UTO Ingatherings, deposit the change, and mail checks directly to the UTO lockbox rather than depositing them into a holding checking account for later transmission to the lockbox. UTO coordinators are offered biannual reports upon request. When Ingathering funds are sent directly to the lockbox, UTO can invest the funds and get a substantially better return than from a savings account. In the past year, UTO earned over $60K from investing the Ingathering funds, thereby allowing that much more to be granted.

We thank all organizations that participate and support the Ingathering. We give special thanks to the Episcopal Church Women who go to bat for UTO all year long.

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