A holistic financial wellness program can help your congregation in more ways than one. It can help church members heal their relationship with their finances, align their money habits with their spiritual values, and become generous givers and grateful stewards of God's Kingdom.
Further, financial wellness programs can also be beneficial for church leaders. They can help church leaders save time and energy they would've otherwise spent solving their congregation's financial problems, leaving them free to focus on other important church matters.
Here are 3 key reasons why a financial wellness program can make a world of difference to your church and congregation.
One of the biggest benefits of hosting a holistic financial wellness program in the church is having less stressed church members.
Growing up, most of us weren’t even taught basic financial literacy. This lack of money management skills can lead to poor financial decisions and even negative emotions, like shame and guilt.
Further, since money management tends to be a taboo topic, even in the church, years can go by without church members finding a real solution to the money problems.
When giving opportunities arise, church members can feel obligated to give above their means. This can increase their debt load or can leave them feeling inadequate or guilty about not being able to follow their heart.
Some members may even want to participate in church happenings like mission programs. But they may not be able to because they can't fund such opportunities.
A holistic financial wellness program addresses key financial stewardship principles. It equips church members with the tools they need to align their money with their true values, get on the same page with their spouse, and be proactive and intentional with their money.
As the scripture from Luke 14:28 states: “But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it?” (NLT)
As members learn to spend more intentionally, there will be more money to save for the future, pay off debt, and give generously. When a Christian household is financially in order, imagine how much love, generosity and kindness can flow through it. There’s so much that can be done for the kingdom of God in a household of peace.
In an article on financial literacy in churches, Lovett H.Weems Jr. and Ann A. Michel of the Lewis Center state: “Churches constantly ask their members to consider the church’s financial situation but seldom offer to help members with their own financial challenges.”
The article goes on to say: "If sound management of personal finances is the first responsibility of a Christian steward, then churches have a key role to play in educating, supporting, and equipping members for this task."
The truth is many adults experience discomfort and embarrassment around finances. This can make them feel alone, ashamed, and too scared to ask for help.
God wants all of us to be able to do three things: Share our faith, share our time and share our finances.
But as committed Christians, we can’t do these things if we’re hurting financially.
When working with Christian clients, I’ve noticed that their goals are almost always the same:
Equipping church members with the tools to follow their hearts can be incredibly transformative, as many members will find freedom in doing God's will.
One way to help is by forming support groups where people facing similar challenges can come together to understand each other’s concerns and provide guidance.
Sharing and communicating with others in similar circumstances can help ease the pain and embarrassment and give members motivation and hope.
With the right support from the church, members can finally learn to “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV)
The third aspect of a holistic financial wellness program is the creation of a Financial Education Ministry, led by a dedicated Financial Champion.
The Financial Champion can be responsible for assessing the church's needs and leading all financial programs. This will allow an intentional focus on this ministry. This person should have the heart of a teacher. Their goal is to teach proper financial stewardship. And to guide church members on how to use the financial resources God has entrusted us with in a way that honors God.
This ministry will also be responsible for looking after the various financial needs and concerns of the congregation, including:
They can also be responsible for conducting seminars where skilled church members can volunteer to educate the congregation on:
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19 – 21 NIV)
Creating a separate Financial Education Ministry will also show the congregation that the church cares about their needs and welfare. Church members who can build healthy money habits and get their finances in order will no longer feel burdened by lack and scarcity. They will now be able to give proactively from a place of abundance, generosity and joy.
In conclusion, a holistic Financial Wellness program will relieve church members’ financial stress and enable them to give more generously. And the best part is, this can be accomplished without adding a burden to the church leaders’ already packed schedule.
If you’re interested in implementing a holistic financial wellness program at your church, book a free discovery call with an Accountable-Certified Financial Wellness expert here
Jenny Reichley is an inspiring and caring finance coach who has been helping people transform their lives since 2019. She offers personal finance coaching and Financial Wellness workshops for churches and businesses.
Jenny holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and a Master’s Degree in Information Technology. She led financial workshop classes for 10+ years. She earned the Financial Coach Master Certification and the Coach Connection Financial Coach training in 2020. She is secretary/treasurer for the Muskingum chapter of BNI, a local business networking group in Zanesville, OH.
Jenny is married, a mother to three children (and two cats she adores), and a grandmother to six. She’s been blessed to be able to take charge of her financial situation and change her life for the better.
Now, her passion is to challenge others to be proactive, take charge of their own finances, and help people get out of their own way when it comes to achieving financial wellness and serving their faith at the same time.
Ron Povaleri is a behavior-based financial coach and is both coach and a speaker inspiring people to go from surviving to thriving financially. Ron has also been successful in helping churches and their people gain control of their financial future and start tithing and giving for the first time in their lives without the concern of financial stress.
Ron completed all the Financial Coach Master Certification, followed by doing and completing all the Coach Connections training. Ron loves what he does because it gives him the opportunity of guiding others to fulfill God’s will in their lives.
Heather Oynes is a money coach for women and couples, helping them bring their personal and business finances from chaos to order.
She loves taking a Biblical approach to managing money and showing others how to practically apply it to their unique financial situation. Ultimately, she helps you de-stress your money and go after your God-given dreams with a personalized, doable action plan for your finances that will set you up for a lifetime of stewarding your money well.
Heather resides in Texas with her husband and three rambunctious sons, including a set of twins.
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