What We Do
Financial Planning With a Christian Perspective – What is It?
Below are excerpts from an article that was published in The Vision a few years ago which will explain the program. I would be happy to meet with your finance committee and other leadership of your church if there is interest in the program. Click here to view a powerpoint presentation>> (or here to view that presentation as a pdf file>>) which I give to the leadership of the church to explain why they should sign up for the program.
My name is Ed Ruppmann, and I am a former member of the New York Annual Conference Board of Trustees and a current member of the Conference Council on Finance and Administration. This is my first newsletter concerning stewardship and money matters from a Christian perspective.
As some of you might know, stewardship-sharing of one's time and talents — not just money — has become our crusade or ministry. In our effort to promote Stewardship throughout the Long Island East District we started a program called Stewardship in Action (now Sower: Seeds of Faith & Finance). The program began at the Woodbury (NY) United Methodist Church. We assisted people with their personal financial plans. Our church members and friends offered to pay for the work. We did not accept the money, so we asked that they give a special offering to our church in recognition of our work. This started us thinking that perhaps other churches would also benefit from our time and talents."
We have now held about 40-45 seminars throughout the conference and educated well over 800 people about how to be good stewards of their resources." We are especially pleased that the program has generated over $3.9 million in bequests and over $62,000 in free will offerings.
To help you understand a little more about what this program offers, here is a brief summary of the program as described in a letter sent to Bishop Park:
The Stewardship in Action (now Sowers of the Seeds of Faith and Finance) program's fundamental objective is simple: we need to get people on solid financial ground before the church asks for something. Once we provide the members with a road map for savings and a secure retirement, they will be compelled to give more freely."
Through the Sower: Seeds of Faith & Finance program we are prepared to provide free financial planning such that people know where they stand and how much they need to save for their child's college and their own retirement. We help to get them out of credit card debt by developing savings programs that work.
The program is unique in that there is absolutely NO SALES PITCH. This is my way of giving back for all the blessings I have received. My retirement is secure, and I hope to be able to help others share in my blessings and experience peace of mind concerning their financial future.
Through the program, everyone will be entitled to a free 15 - 20 page financial plan and consultation. Everyone will be able to decide with whom and how they wish to implement the plan. All that we ask in return is prayerful consideration of a free will offering payable to their home church in recognition of the work that I have done.
We also have Methodist attorneys who will be offering elder care and estate planning services for anyone who participates in the program at as much as a 50% discount from their normal fee. They will offer Medicaid planning services as well and will help people prepare a will. During this process, we will ask the question: would you like to leave something to your church in your will? You would be amazed at how many attorneys never ask this question. We had someone at my church ask for a minor change to her will. When I asked the question, her immediate response was, "Of course I would. I love my church. I just never thought about it." She now has left 10% of her estate to our church. This is what it’s all about - insuring the long-term survival of church and Christian faith for future generations.
We are excited about the possibilities to help. The program is open to pastors and laity, including their relatives and friends. We stand ready to serve all of our churches that seek help with their Stewardship programming. This is our way of expressing our thanks to God for all the blessings we have received.
Feel free to give me a call if you have any questions.
10 Clemson Lane
Woodbury, NY 11797