An article from the Cathedral Times
by Dean Sam Candler
This past December, an old friend took me to lunch. He had lots of good things to say, which I appreciated. But then he furrowed his eyes and wondered how the Cathedral was doing financially. He does not always follow the weekly newsletter or website news about the Cathedral, but he had noted my December letter describing our financial position.
In that December letter (I am sure you will recall!), I advised all of us that the Cathedral of St. Philip needed to receive $1,142,000 in financial commitments if we were to finish the 2017 financial year evenly. That was a huge number! (Our annual operating budget is $4,500,000 – so we needed about a quarter of that amount.) I also reminded our community that we almost always need about that amount, every December, for our finances to come out even.
This Cathedral community is an amazing center of worship, ministry, and service. We serve grace, excellence, and hospitality in creative ways every month of the year! But that ministry requires resources. Here is my reminder again: grace is free, but ministry costs money! It costs money to support the campus and staff and energy and excellent hospitality of this place. But often, that money does not come in to the Cathedral until the last month or two of the year. (We are similar to many organizations that way, aren’t we? Note the many retail establishments, partnerships and firms, and businesses that seem to settle their finances in the last quarter of every year.)
In faith, I know that God will provide. But in practice (and when I worry in the middle of night), I never know whether we will make it! Will the community step up to our commitments of generosity and service?
Well, I am thrilled to say: You did!
You did it. The Cathedral needed to receive $1,142,000. And we received $1,104,000, almost all of what we needed, and one of the largest December receipts we have ever recorded. Our unbudgeted deficit for 2017 comes in at ($31,000). Wow. Thank you! And THANKS SO MUCH to those of you who were fulfilling your pledges throughout the year and not waiting until December! Every one of you was magnificent; you made a huge difference.
You are part of an amazingly generous and committed Cathedral community. Thank you! Your companion parishioners thank you, and the world thanks you. With your faithful commitment of money and resources, the Cathedral of St. Philip continues to serve the world in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Our God thanks you!
Our 2018 is now begun. The snow is over! Holy routines have resumed. The Cathedral Antiques Show is open this week. We have a superb new priest, the Reverend Lauren Holder, with us! Three of our parochial entities are, or will be, seeking new Directors this year. All ages are finding Christian formation and community here! We are serving the poor and those in prison. Holy energy is thriving in the Cathedral of St. Philip with grace, with excellence, and with hospitality.
All this happens because of your generosity! This year, 2018, will be even greater and more magnificent than 2017. Thank you!
The Very Reverend Samuel G. Candler
Dean of the Cathedral of St. Philip