"5 • CENTS • PER • MEAL" OFFERING
The “5-Cents-Per-Meal” Offering is a small first step in the battle against hunger and poverty. First Presbyterian Church invites every member — of all ages — to contribute a five cents at every meal. This simple act is an expression of thanks for what we have received. It is also a commitment to share with others in response to Jesus' command “You give them something to eat.” And, about once a quarter, the members bring their offerings to church on the appointed Sunday.
This special offering originated in 1976 as “Two-Cents-A-Meal,” a project begun by Presbyterian Women to involve individuals and families in a corporate response to world hunger. Over the years, presbyteries have developed similar programs entitled “Pennies for Hunger,” “Nickle-A-Meal,” etc. These programs are part of our denominational offering called “Cents-Ability,” a program which benefits the national and international projects of the Presbyterian Hunger Program (PHP).
First Presbyterian Church receives this offering once a quarter. Twenty percent of this offering goes to local hunger ministries. The other eighty percent goes to the Presbyterian Hunger Program.
ONE GREAT HOUR OF SHARING
Since 1949, Presbyterians have joined with millions of other Christians through One Great Hour of Sharing to share God’s love with people experiencing need. Our gifts support ministries of disaster response, refugee assistance and resettlement, and community development that help people find safe refuge, start new lives and work together to strengthen their families and communities.
Recognizing that the hope we have in Christ is lived out in our hope for one another, we respond with gifts that help our sisters and brothers around the world find the hope for a brighter future.
The Presbyterian Hunger Program receives 36 percent of undesignated One Great Hour of Sharing gifts, while the Self-Development of People and Presbyterian Disaster Assistance each receive 32 percent.
Most congregations receive the offering on Easter Sunday, Palm Sunday or both, while many receive it throughout Lent.
The Pentecost Offering is traditionally received on the day of Pentecost. It provides a direct way to meet the needs of children at risk, youth, and young adults. Congregations are encouraged to keep 40 percent of the Offering to support ministry with children at risk in their communities.
The General Assembly’s portion (60 percent) provides leadership development opportunities for Presbyterian youth and young adults and supports children-at-risk programs at the national level. Since 1998, Presbyterians of all ages have raised more than $8 million for these ministries that benefit younger members of God’s family.
The Peacemaking Offering was created in 1980 to support the efforts of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to live out a deeper commitment to peacemaking as part of our faithfulness to God. It is one of four special offerings received each year by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).
Most congregations receive the Offering on World Communion Sunday, the first Sunday in October. Of course, congregations are free to use whatever Sunday works best for them.
Each congregation is encouraged to retain 25 percent of the Offering it receives to use for local ministries of peacemaking within the church and its community. Twenty-five percent is used by presbyteries and synods, and 50 percent is used by the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program.
CHRISTMAS JOY OFFERING
A Presbyterian tradition for almost 70 years, the Christmas Joy Offering is one of the four special offerings designated by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) to provide congregations direct ways of supporting specific causes that help those in need.
50 percent of the receipts to the Christmas Joy Offering are distributed to the Board of Pensions for assistance programs that provide support to retired and active church workers and their spouses and families. The other fifty percent supports Presbyterian-related racial ethnic education through the General Assembly Council.
The Christmas Joy Offering is usually received the Sunday before Christmas.
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