Stewardship Resources for Congregational Leadership

Books/Resource Kits

  • Ask, Thank, TellAugsburg Fortress, ISBN 0-8066-5263-2. ($11.99) This is a 2006 book that lays out a structure and understanding of stewardship based on a person’s relationship with God and life of discipleship rather than a church’s efforts to pay the bills.
  • Giving to God, Eerdman’s Publishing (available at Augsburg Fortress) ISBN 0-8028-2926-0 ($13) This is a 2006 book that speaks of stewardship as an act of worship and discipline for spiritual growth.
  • Biblical Stewardship: Our Duty and Delight – DVD with 7 sessions with Dr. Mark Allan Powell on stewardship with study guides.
  • Stewardship in the Small Membership Rural Congregation and Stewardship in the Small Membership Urban Congregation, Ecumenical Stewardship Center. These are 32-page manuals with a 3-week stewardship financial response method (Faithful, Hopeful, Loving) for rural and small urban congregations and include a 6-part Biblical stewardship study. Available through ELCA resources at 800-638-3522, ext 2767. ($2)
  • How to Improve Financial Stewardship, Augsburg Fortress. This is a 32-page booklet outlining the 6 most popular financial response methods. Available through the ELCA Resource Catalog, by calling 800-638-3522, ext. 2580, or click here for on-line version.  ($4.95)
  • Step by Step: Fostering Financial Stewardship in your Congregation, Augsburg Fortress. This book is authored by Rev. Michael Meiers, ELCA Stewardship, and it covers some basic practical steps in stewardship, including some scriptural basis. (Also, the ideas of a “program budget” on pages 20-21 are very helpful.) Available free in PDF format. Also available by contacting 800-638-3522, Ext. 2767 ($6.50).
  • The Great Permission: An Asset-based Field Guide for Congregations, Augsburg Fortress. This is a 140-page field guide directed toward exploring the assets of a congregation and how best to utilize these assets. vailable through the ELCA Resource Catalog or by calling 800-638-3522, ext. 2767.
  • Our Stewardship: Managing our AssetsAugsburg Fortress ISBN 0-8066-4406-0 ($14.99) This is a book useful for congregational leaders and pastors for strategic planning, management, finance, stewardship or property teams to explore the gifts of a congregation and how to use them.
  • New Consecration Sunday Stewardship Program Book, Abingdon Press ISBN 0-687-06315-9 ($8.75 – Augsburg Fortress) There is also a Leader’s Guide ($10.75) This has been one of the most widely used programs in the synod. We have a list of trained presenters on our synod web site.
  • Giving and Stewardship in an Effective Church, Kennon Callahan, Jossey-Bass Publishers ISBN 0-7879-3867 ($17.95) This is a wonderful book for congregational stewardship committees and entire councils to read as well. It is a comprehensive and practical overview about stewardship and the mission of a congregation.
  • Not Your Parents’ Offering Plate: A New Vision for Financial Stewardship by J Clif Christopher, Abingdon Press ISBN 978-0-687-64853-5 ($14). This is a great book discussing the practical and spiritual efforts to raise stewardship awareness and effectiveness in churches.
  • Passing the Plate: Why American Christians Don’t Give Away More Money by Christian Smith and Michael Emerson, Oxford University Press ISBN 978-0-19-533711-2 ($24.95). An eye-opening account of why American churchgoers give so little money to charitable causes and how they might be helped to give more.
  • Program Budget – An exciting alternative or addition to the typical line item budget in expressing the budget in terms of the ministry areas in the life of a congregation. So instead of a number on a line item budget, it is expressed as a ministry area. This is part of a larger resource, Step by Step: Fostering Financial Stewardship in Your Congregation. This book offers a general overview of stewardship practice and theology. Download the PDF. Step 12, found on pages 20-21 of the Step by Step portion, is the program budget component.


  • ELCA website for stewardship:
  • Stories of Faith in Action: Annual publication of the ELCA explaining how God is changing lives through the mission and ministry of the ELCA, resources on mission support, budget information, and more. Order copies here.
  • Luther Seminary’s web site –
  • Ecumenical Stewardship Center web site with resources and information about other denominational stewardship materials and annual conference, including some youth stewardship materials
  • Gettysburg Seminary in Pennsylvania web site dedicated to stewardship education; they also have a free e-newsletter available –
  • Simply Giving is a program formerly sponsored by Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and still endorsed by them, but totally managed by Vanco Services that allows for automatic checking deductions from member checking accounts.

Need More?

Rev. Pete Reuss, Director for Evangelical Mission, can be reached at, 507-280-9457, or 800-426-6376 in Minnesota.

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