FAQs for Annual Giving

What is a pledge?

A pledge is a promise to donate a certain amount of money to UUCPA during its fiscal year. Our community thrives because members and friends promise their time, talents, and financial support.

When is the UUCPA fiscal year?

The UUCPA fiscal year begins on May 1 and ends on April 30 the following year. (For example, FY15 begins 5/1/2014 and ends on 4/30/2015. The fiscal year begins after each year’s Canvass is completed and we have a new, approved budget.

What is the Canvass?

The Canvass is our annual pledge drive, and is used to determine our budget for the coming year.

Why should I pledge?

From a financial perspective, we pledge because:

  • A financially healthy UUCPA is the responsibility of all its Members and Friends.
  • Pledging lets us know how much income we will have so that we can plan realistically for the coming year.

And sustaining UUCPA financially is important to us because:

  • We love this place.
  • Because UUCPA is a place where we come together as individuals and as a community.
  • Because UUCPA welcomes our children of all ages and helps us tend to their spiritual growth.
  • Because our community offers a place to sing, weep, be still, debate, learn, come as we are, and work for a better world.
  • Because our community helps sustain us when we can’t find a job, feel lonely, need support, or lose a loved person in our lives.
  • Do I need to be a Member to pledge?

    No. Anyone can make an annual pledge to UUCPA — Member, Friend or Visitor. If you enjoy this campus and its offerings, please help support our ability to continue to provide them.

    Must I pledge to be a Member or Friend of UUCPA?

    Everyone is welcome to attend services at UUCPA, with no financial obligation, regardless of whether you are formally a Member of a Friend.

    However, we believe that financial support is one of the responsibilities of membership and friendship, and we strongly encourage Members and Friends to pledge consistent with their individual circumstances.

    In addition, a contribution of record is a requirement for voting membership.

    How are my pledge payments used?

    Pledge payments support the yearly operation of UUCPA. They pay for the programs and work of the church, including worship and music, children’s and adult religious education, pastoral care, our social justice projects, and new ministries. Pledge income helps pay the salaries of the ministers and staff and for the operation and maintenance of our facilities.

    Thus, your pledge helps UUCPA:

    • Sustain our community;
    • Encourage spiritual and intellectual growth;
    • Reach out to members in need;
    • Expand our outreach and social justice efforts;
    • Maintain and sustain our beautiful facilities;
    • Support our music and arts programs;
    • Sponsor forums, events, and speakers to open minds and hearts;
    • Welcome more people and become more richly diverse.

    Is it possible to “earmark” my pledge for a specific purpose?

    No. Pledge payments go into UUCPA’s general annual Operating Fund to fulfill already–committed operating expenses for the current year.

    How much should I pledge?

    Please read Determine Your Pledge for helpful guidance.

    Is there a minimum pledge?

    No. But as soon as you become a member, UUCPA pays over $150 annually in dues to related associations that support our ministry and social justice efforts. Thus, if you become a member and pledge less than $150, your membership actually costs UUCPA money, without helping fund any services you enjoy.

    What if my financial situation worsens during the year?

    Your pledge to UUCPA is not legally binding, and you won’t be held to it. But please let us know if you need to make a change. To do so, complete and return another pledge form; your old pledge will automatically be replaced with the new one. And just as importantly, please let us know if the Ministers or anyone at UUCPA can help.

    Are my pledge payments tax deductible?

    Pledge payments are charitable contributions; as such, they are deductible to the full extent of the law. For your tax records, statements are sent out just after the end of the calendar year, with information on your pledges and any other gifts that you made during that year.

    Are my contributions to the Sunday collection tax deductible?

    Checks dropped in the basket are tax deductible, as is cash in an envelope with your name on it. If you want to make a significant cash contribution, please make it in the church office, and be sure to obtain a written receipt showing the date and the amount of the contribution.

    How do I make my pledge?

    The steps are described on the Make Your Pledge page.

    How do I pay my pledge?

    The steps are described on the Fulfill Your Pledge page. Be sure to note the instructions regarding how to mark the memo field when putting checks in the collection basket.

    Can I pay my pledge with stock donations?

    Yes. Please read the special instructions here.


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