What is a pledge?

A pledge is a PROMISE. It shows your intended financial support for the church during the fiscal year (July 1 through June 30).

To let us know what your pledge will be you can submit an online form here or you can download the form to print and return by mail. If you need July 2023-June 2024 pledge form, you can download that here.

No, really… What IS a pledge?!?

A pledge is a promise to the church and a commitment to the people who work for this congregation. It’s not a contract, and we understand that circumstances change.

We each need the sustenance that our beloved community provides, and our spiritual home needs the continual nurturing of time and money to thrive.  Everyone who cares about this congregation is invited to pledge — members, friends, visitors, and seekers alike.  

Your promise helps the Board of Trustees and staff plan for the year ahead and keep our buildings and services running smoothly.  We even appreciate hearing when you are unable to make a pledge in a given year — that also helps us with our planning.

What the difference between a pledge and putting money in the offering basket?

A pledge is not something that varies week to week based on the amount of spiritual guidance you receive. A pledge is consistent and helps us build stability. The offering that takes place in worship is different.

The Offering that takes place during Sunday worship allows you to:

  1. make a payment on a pledge (write ‘pledge payment’ in the memo line of a check or put a note with your cash),
  2. give extra when you’re so moved, and
  3. share your resources with an organization that shares our values (as we split the offering each quarter with a different charity though our Change For The World Program).

Many people set up automatic payments for both their pledge payment and a little extra for the offering (in order to contribute to that charity), but whatever or however you give to the church is welcome and appreciated.

Do I need to pledge?

Short answer, YES! Making and fulfilling an annual pledge deepens your faith and sustains the Unitarian Universalist Church of Vancouver for the benefit of us all and the wider community we serve.

Also, from our bylaws, membership in this Church is open to any person who:

  • Is in accord with its purpose including the Principles of the UUA and the current Church covenant,
  • has attained the age of sixteen,
  • Pledges a financial contribution each year, unless granted a waiver by the Minister, and
  • Has an understanding of the history and current status of the UU denomination.

To foster an atmosphere of shared ministry, all members are encouraged to volunteer their time and talents to sustain the Church and its mission. It is understood that neither subscription to creed nor participation in ceremony is required to become a member of the Church.

How do I determine my pledge amount?

When thinking about narrowing down a pledge amount, focus on sustainability and growth. What can your budget sustain over the next year? What kind of sustainability and growth will your pledge offer UUCV?

There’s no right number. Each person and family will have their own right-sized pledge. Look at your own personal budget and see how much you are able to share on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis. Give as generously as you can, and enjoy celebrating in abundance at UUCV.

Some folks have more to share than others, and that’s part of how it works. Together we are stronger. Your contributions positively ripple through this congregation and out into the world in ways that are hard to quantify.

For those who would like more guidance about what a pledge might look like, we’ve provided a giving chart here. It simply shows how different kinds of pledges might be calculated. Here is a percentage increase calculator that might also be helpful. We expect you to meet your needs first and only pledge to the church an amount that is sustainable for you and your family. As Robin Wall Kimmerer reminds us, “In a culture of gratitude, everyone knows that gifts will follow the circle of reciprocity and flow back to you again. Both the honor of giving and the humility of receiving are necessary halves of the equation.”

How do I pay my pledge?

Once you have turned in your pledge form so we know what you intend to do, the next step is to fulfill your pledge by choosing which way you want to pay your pledge amount. Our church fiscal year is from July 1 – June 30th. You can pay your pledge by credit card, EFT from your checking account, writing a check and more.

You can pay monthly, annually, or at whatever interval works for you by:

  • Give online. Set up electronic payment using a checking account, debit card, or credit card for July through June. Use the Give button on the menu of the UUCV website or click here. Create or login to your account to set up a recurring payment or to make a secure one-time gift via ACH bank transfer or debit/credit card. See more detailed instructions below.
  • Send a check by mail. Make your check out to “UUCV.” Please be sure the check includes a note or memo indicating it’s a pledge payment. Send your check to UUCV at P.O. Box 1621, Vancouver, WA 98668.
  • Use the Vanco Mobile App:
    • Simply download the free app (for iPhones or on Google Play.)
    • Search for “Unitarian Universalist Church of Vancouver.” Create or login to your account to set up a recurring payment or to make a secure one-time gift via ACH bank transfer or debit/credit card.
  • Pay in person at Sunday service. Put your check in the offering basket. Make your check out to “UUCV.” In the memo box, add “Pledge payment.”
  • Set up a distribution from my IRA
  • Email treasurer@uucvan.org if you would like help. We can set up an electronic payment for you using your checking account, debit card, or credit card.

Can you tell me more about how to set up my online giving account and create a recurring pledge payment?

If you’d like to set up online giving, there are few steps you’ll need to take. 

  • First, click the Give button on the menu of the UUCV website or click here.
  • Click on the button that says “offer support” under the pledge payment icon.
  • Select the amount, frequency, and start date of your pledge payment. You generally want your pledge payment to begin after July 1st.
  • Click the button called “Add to basket.” This is like “Add to cart” found on commercial websites like Amazon. It’s just a holding area.
  • Review your payment choice. Click “Continue to payment.” If you click on “Continue to Payment,” you will then be asked to “Continue with Account.” This is a login page. If you don’t have a login/password set up, you would do so at this point.
  • Under the heading Payment Method click on either Credit or Debit Card or Bank Account. Then enter your account details or, if you haven’t done so already, log in to access your saved payments if you’ve donated online before. Enter your contact information if needed.
  • Once everything is entered correctly, go over to the box called “Basket.” If you would like help cover the costs of online payments, click the toggle to choose to contribute extra to help cover the processing fees and then click the “continue to review” button.
  • If everything looks accurate, finish the transaction by confirming payment.

If you would like to view these step by step directions with pictures, click here.