RAISING CHURCH FUNDS by@rockefeller

RAISING CHURCH FUNDS

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When I was but seventeen or eighteen I was elected as a trustee in the church. It was a mission branch, and occasionally I had to hear members who belonged to the main body speak of the mission as though it were not quite so good as the big mother church. This strengthened our resolve to show them that we could paddle our own canoe.
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John D. Rockefeller

Random Reminiscences of Men and Events

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Random Reminiscences of Men and Events, by John D. Rockefeller is part of the HackerNoon Books Series. You can jump to any chapter in this book here. Chapter II : RAISING CHURCH FUNDS

Chapter II. RAISING CHURCH FUNDS

When I was but seventeen or eighteen I was elected as a trustee in the church. It was a mission branch, and occasionally I had to hear members who belonged to the main body speak of the mission as though it were not quite so good as the big mother church. This strengthened our resolve to show them that we could paddle our own canoe.

Our first church was not a very grand affair, and there was a mortgage of $2,000 on it which had been a dispiriting influence for years.

The holder of the mortgage had long demanded that he should be paid, but somehow even the interest was barely kept up, and the creditor finally threatened to sell us out. As it happened, the money had been lent by a deacon in the church, but notwithstanding this fact, he felt that he should have his money, and perhaps he really needed it. Anyhow, he proposed to take such steps as were necessary to get it. The matter came to a head one Sunday morning, when the minister announced from the pulpit that the $2,000 would have to be raised, or we should lose our church building. I therefore found myself at the door of the church as the congregation came and went.

As each member came by I buttonholed him, and got him to promise to give something toward the extinguishing of that debt. I pleaded and urged, and almost threatened. As each one promised, I put his name and the amount down in my little book, and continued to solicit from every possible subscriber.

This campaign for raising the money which started that morning after church, lasted for several months. It was a great undertaking to raise such a sum of money in small amounts ranging from a few cents to the more magnificent promises of gifts to be paid at the rate of twenty-five or fifty cents per week. The plan absorbed me. I contributed what I could, and my first ambition to earn more money was aroused by this and similar undertakings in which I was constantly engaged.

But at last the $2,000 was all in hand and a proud day it was when the debt was extinguished. I hope the members of the mother church were properly humiliated to see how far we had gone beyond their expectations, but I do not now recall that they expressed the surprise that we flattered ourselves they must have felt.

The begging experiences I had at that time were full of interest. I went at the task with pride rather than the reverse, and I continued it until my increasing cares and responsibilities compelled me to resign the actual working out of details to others.

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This book is part of the public domain. John D. Rockefeller. (2005). Random Reminiscences of Men and Events. Urbana, Illinois: Project Gutenberg. Retrieved May 2022 from https://www.gutenberg.org/files/65377/65377-h/65377-h.htm

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org, located at https://www.gutenberg.org/policy/license.html.

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