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#GivingTuesday on Nov. 29 will again celebrate the collective power of Presbyterian generosity

Six-hour livestreamed event offers Presbyterians an opportunity to engage in global day of giving

by Emily Enders Odom | Presbyterian News Service

#GivingTuesday is set for Nov. 29. A six-hour livestream hosted at the Presbyterian Center in Louisville, Kentucky, is planned.

LOUISVILLE — #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving which this year falls on Nov. 29, is not only a day when Presbyterians are invited to be radically generous on behalf of a world in need, but it is also an ideal time for the PC(USA) to embody its Matthew 25 priorities.

“During these days of strife and divisiveness, we hold close the words of Jesus from Matthew 25: to act boldly and compassionately with love to serve people who are hungry, oppressed, imprisoned or poor,” said the Rev. Dr. Diane Moffett, president and executive director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency. “The timing is Spirit-led as Giving Tuesday gives us an opportunity to share how we are living into our Matthew 25 vision and being a church of action.”

#GivingTuesday was originally launched in 2012 on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving as a philanthropic response to the consumer-driven holidays of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In 2022, the worldwide observance will once again help to underscore the many ways in which Presbyterians are living out the call to be a Matthew 25 Church.

Because the PC(USA) — which first joined the #GivingTuesday movement in 2014 — has witnessed increased engagement through its livestreamed #GivingTuesday programming in 2020 and 2021, a multi-agency, cross-departmental team is once again planning a livestream from noon through 6 p.m. Eastern Time on Nov. 29 designed to entertain, inform and encourage greater giving.

Inspired by telethons of the past, the PC(USA) will be staging a virtual event, which will be hosted from the Presbyterian Center in Louisville. A complete schedule and more information on the program theme, “We are the Church Together,” will be published in the coming weeks.

One such witness to being the Church together — demonstrating the power of both individual and collective acts — was recorded on Giving Tuesday last year, when Fellowship Presbyterian Church in Greensboro, North Carolina, was honored with an online gift to the PC(USA) with the words, “Thank you to Pastor Kathryn and members of Fellowship Presbyterian Church… Your kindness and giving heart is shining a light in our hearts and our neighborhood where we live.”

The Rev. Dr. Kathryn G. N. Campbell with her husband, Austin, and their two children, Avis (left) and Archer. (Photo courtesy of Carrie Lilly Photography)

The church’s pastor, the Rev. Dr. Kathryn G. N. Campbell, responded by saying, “As a Matthew 25 congregation, we seek to find ways to connect with the community and serve as Christ’s hand and feet. By participating in Giving Tuesday, we are able to point additional monies, given as an act of generosity, to at least one of the three Matthew 25 foci.”

Ever since the founding of #GivingTuesday, congregations like Fellowship, nonprofits, small businesses, corporations, schools and faith-based organizations across the U.S. and all over the world have mobilized to celebrate this global day of giving.

“Giving Tuesday is an opportunity for Presbyterians to expand on that moment around the Thanksgiving dinner table when everyone shares what they are most thankful for,” said Dr. William McConnell, interim director of Special Offerings and Appeals for the Presbyterian Mission Agency. “As we count our own blessings, we share what we have with ministries that serve our siblings around the world — generous gifts that help bring God’s love to those in our world who are marginalized, hurting, in danger, or who have the least.”

As church and society continue to adjust to the ever-changing habits and practices of post-pandemic life, the call to address the world’s hurts and needs is more critical now than ever.

“As we enter this new normal in our world today, it has required us to rethink what it means to be church in the 21st century,” said the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the PC(USA). “We are not the same. As fewer people fill the pews, we are relying on technology to ensure we stay connected to those God has called us to serve. We are looking beyond the walls of our buildings and sanctuaries in order to help those with the greatest need. Giving Tuesday is more important now than it has ever been. Our ministry is more important than it has ever been.”


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