Church surprises its members with a reverse offering

The church gave $50 envelopes to families, inspiring the congregation to give to people or organizations in need.

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — “It is such a wonderful thing to be able to show that our churches even giving back, putting that money in our hands to be able to say, we can use this to make a difference,” said Sarah Baltensperger, a member inspired to give back.

It’s an influential moment as a mother walks with her son to donate to the organization of her choice after Westminster Presbyterian Church surprised its members with a reverse offering.

“We have a little bit extra left over so why not give it to our church members and say here,” said Pastor Rev. Chris Peters. “Here’s $50 in an envelope, find a place where you feel called to help someone else in the community and to do so, as a person of faith.”

Pastor Chris Peters said the church has a surplus from the continued giving during the pandemic. They invested in their youth, gave $10,000 to the habitat build fund, and then gave 50-dollar envelopes to families, inspiring the congregation to give to people or organizations in need.
Sarah and her son were inspired right away, hoping to give their donation to the friendship home.

“It felt a bit emotional hearing about it and just thinking about all of those envelopes and then each and every one of those envelopes would be going out to serve the community and to benefit the community,” said Baltensperger. “In some way, that so many lives would be touched, and that pay it forward, you know, you never know what can come from one amazing act.”

Inside each envelope is not only the money, but also a note explaining the gift and a request to email the church and share their stories on how donations just like this one will help.

“I think what I would hope for just the community, in general, to be encouraged that communities of faith do care about our neighborhoods do care about our neighbors,” said Peters. “And to encourage churches to out there, too, whether you’re large or small, or you’re uncertain of your future to find ways that you can get back.”

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