A Function of Discipleship – Your Giving Matters!
Your giving directly contributes to the ongoing mission of The American Church in Paris. We are a community of more than 40 nationalities who believe our mission is “to bear witness by word and deed to the love of God as revealed in Jesus Christ, to provide a place of English language worship in the American Protestant tradition and to engage in ministries and services that enrich the lives of residents and visitors in Paris.” Your giving can help us to continue to be a dynamic Embassy for the Kingdom of God here in Paris impacting the world for Christ!
Exploring God’s Word on Giving
As Christians searching God’s Word about giving and about relying on God when we give, we find several principles, instructions and promises in both the Old and New Testaments. Among those words of wisdom:
All we have belongs to God, and we are stewards of what He’s given us.
Everything we have has come from you, and we give you only what you first gave us. (I Chronicles 29:14)
We are to give to God first, not give Him what’s left over. That practice honors God with obedience, shows where our heart is and forces us to trust God.
Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops. (Proverbs 3:9)
This trust moves us toward relying on God rather than spending our lives worrying whether we’ll ever have enough.
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life...do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. (Matthew 6:25...6:34)
As the story of the widow’s mite illustrates, it is not the amount of the gift but the act of obedience and sacrifice that is important to God.
“I tell you the truth,” Jesus said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others.” (Luke 21:4)
As for amounts of contributions, noblesse oblige:
Each of you must bring a gift in proportion to the way the Lord your God has blessed you. (Deuteronomy 16:17)
As a rule, God doesn’t ask us to test Him, but He does in Malachi and adds a promise.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” (Malachi 3:10)
Paul reminds us of that promise by God and also implies we aren’t supposed to feel pressure or squirm in our seats during a stewardship sermon but assume a spirit of generosity.
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (II Corinthians 9:6-7)
Stewardship includes time and talent as well as treasure, and if you give of all three, you can save the church from having to pay for the time and talent.
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. (I Peter 4:10)
The history of the American Church in Paris goes back 160 years to 1857 when the original church was built on rue de Berri on the Right Bank near the Champs-Élysées. Presidents Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson all worshipped there. When the congregation had outgrown that building, a new church was built in the late 1920s in the neo-Gothic style on the quai d’Orsay with the help of several wealthy parishioners. It included the church house and the sanctuary, but the ACP was not yet “The Spire on the Seine,” because there was no steeple.
Reverend Joseph Wilson Cochran, realizing the importance of a steeple to tie the two buildings together, went to the U.S. to solicit funds for a spire, but the country was in the middle of the Great Depression. The pastor was turned down by those who had lost fortunes. But one well-to-do man in New York with the initials ACJ had had his money in gold instead of the stock market, and he was willing to pay for the steeple. All he asked was that his name not be disclosed.
The pastor honored that request, but in the archway over the door leading to the church house, immortalized the anonymous donor by having the initials “ACJ” carved in the stone. And the spire has become an icon of the Paris skyline.
That’s just one story in a rich history of Christians making investments in the ACP to ensure there was a building here and that it was maintained for the ACP’s extensive mission in this great city. Now it is up to us, with our contributions large and small, to ensure that the gospel is preached to all comers, the needy receive help, the church’s magnificent musical tradition continues, and lives are enriched with a myriad of activities and programs.
Stewardship Campaign 2020 documents
• How can I GIVE?
• How do I Get Involved!?
• How can I Support ACP financially?
• How can I make a financial pledge?
• What is "the tithe" and how much should I give of my financial resources?
• What is a steward and how do I become a steward of ACP?
• How do I get more information?
How can I GIVE?
There are many ways you can give to God's Kingdom through your stewardship at The American Church in Paris. Whether it be your financial resources and/or volunteering your time and talents, we need your participation! Please visit our Support Us and Get Involved! webpages for more information on how to contribute your financial and time and talent resources to the advancement of our faith. Please reflect on the blessing you have been given by God and how you can share them. Back to Stewardship FAQ.
How do I Get Involved!?
Each year in September the ACP has a Ministry Fair to introduce the members, friends, and visitors to ACP about the various groups and ministries within our diverse congregation. Please join us for this key event to find out how you can participate in enriching your Christian journey, serve our brothers and sisters, and share the talents which God has blessed you in our city and the world. If you missed the Ministry Fair, you can get involved year round by visiting our Get Involved! webpage. Back to Stewardship FAQ
How can I Support ACP financially?
ACP's various programs and ministries depend on the generosity of its members, friends, and visitors. Please visit our Support Us webpage for more information on how to contribute your financial resources to the advancement of our faith. We need your help! Back to Stewardship FAQ
How can I make a financial pledge?
What is "the tithe" and how much should I give of my financial resources?
The apostle Paul says famously that "God loves a cheerful giver." This word "cheerful" in the Greek is hilaron, which is the root of the English word "hilarious." Giving is not always funny, but should proceed from the deep joy of knowing first God's generous grace and love. The tithe, a ten percent gift of the first fruits, is like training wheels for faithful giving. Faithful stewardship requires planning and practice and can feel like a duty at times, but should always result in joyful, generative blessing to the giver and to those who receive. Part of the blessing of stewardship is learning to let go in order to receive!
What is a steward and how do I become a steward of ACP?
The New Testament Greek word for "steward," oikonomos, is a combination of the word for house (oikos) and law (nomos). In other words, a steward is a house manager, and in the New Testament was used to describe a servant who managed the affairs of a family. In the church we believe that we are all members of the household of God, and each has received gifts from God's infinite love. So we are called to be faithful stewards of the riches of Christ's love, and to bless one another in the church and in the larger community where God has called the church to be a blessing.
How do I get more information?
"Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!" – II Corinthians 9:15.