A Message From Terry

Without exception, Encounter’s seasons of generosity have produced the greatest dependency on God, stretched our faith to new heights, and helped us realize that our mission to call people to be fully devoted followers of Jesus will be Unfinished till Jesus returns.

As we look back over the last 100 years of our church’s history, there are too many demonstrations of the power and love of God to count. God is using our church as a catalyst for the gospel message to reach hundreds, here in the greater Palmyra area, and around the world…like we’ve never seen before in the life of our church. Unfinished is a two-year journey that has the potential to be a Defining Moment in the life of Encounter Church, and a Defining Moment for each of us as Christ-followers. This is the largest step we’ve ever taken, and we want to take it together as one church body.

We ask that you prayerfully join us on this Unfinished journey. No one has ever regretted giving to God. Let’s together agree that God, who began His good work in us, will continue to work in and through us to finish the mission on the day when Jesus returns!
Partnering with you, Terry and Carol Anne

As we engage in our next season of generosity, Unfinished, we’re praying and asking God for:

Our PRIMARY goal:

that 100% of the people in our church would experience a life-changing encounter with God as it relates to their walk with Him and their generosity.

Our Secondary goal:

to raise $3.6 M in generosity to be celebrated over the next two years in order to further the mission to call all people to be devoted followers of Jesus.

Beyond Ourselves

Encounter Church exists for one purpose: to call all people to become devoted followers of Jesus. We believe God has increased our influence for the sole purpose of continuing that mission. As we continue to grow, we are devoted to maintaining that momentum while making sure our existing ministries remain alive and healthy.

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Beyond Our Walls

We are committed to making more room for the people God is bringing our way. God has taken a dirty, dilapidated old grocery store and turned it into something valuable – a place where people have surrendered to Jesus. Our building is a picture of the Gospel, taking something old and unfinished, and making it new and beautiful.

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Beyond Our Borders

It is not simply enough for us to ask God to transform our church family and community. We want to do our part in reaching beyond our borders. Therefore we seek to provide education and awareness of missions; to provide opportunities to connect with local, regional, and global missions; to provide partnerships for missional initiatives; and to provide significant financial support for missions. Our desire is to be a conduit of God’s blessing both locally and globally.

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Beyond Ourselves – $1.3m

This is our general ministry budget, but it is anything but general. These funds are used to further the life-changing ministries of Encounter Church that allow us to engage people on their journey to be devoted followers of Jesus. God has used the people of Encounter to do amazing things for His Kingdom and we know He wants to do more. It is essential that we maintain and grow what God has entrusted us with.

Did you know… During the past 7 years we celebrate:

  • BAPTISM – over 100 individuals have been baptized
  • VOLUNTEERS – currently over 275 individuals are serving on a team
  • GROWTH GROUPS – over 300 individuals have participated in a group
  • NEW GUESTS – over 1000 individuals have attended for the first time
 

Beyond Our Walls – $2.1m

Growth brings growing pains and we feel the squeeze as we meet in our lobby. We want to take the next step and complete our new auditorium, finish our lobby, add additional meeting space, and increase our parking. It is our desire to have this facility seen as a center to serve as both a gift to the community and a great place for weekend and weekday ministry.

Did you know… The final renovations will include:

  • 560 seat auditorium
  • Finished lobby space
  • Additional space for Worship Arts
  • Additional space for Prayer / Adult Ministry
  • 200+ parking spaces
 

Beyond Our Borders – $0.2m

We are committed not only to growing our local church, but to growing THE CHURCH. It is evident God is moving, and we are committed to keeping up with the pace of the Spirit. Our vision for Encounter Missions is to see every follower of Jesus sharing the Gospel – every person transformed. We plan on doing this is by continuing to expand our support of current partnerships, and explore new missional partnerships. Our commitment to carrying out this mission of Jesus has already lead us to tithe out of our expanded generosity, and now we are going to take it to the next level.

Do you know… All of our current partnerships

  • Everyday Missions – Caring Cupboard, Operation Christmas Child, Angel Tree, North Star Initiative, Bethesda Mission, Paxton Ministries, Susquehanna Valley Pregnancy Center
  • Short-Term Missions – Champions in Action, Youth Works
  • Long-Term Missions – Japan, Guam, Spain, Mozambique, London, Ukraine, Pakistan, YWAM
  • Future Mission opportunities include Learning Trips to Africa, Spain, Pakistan, Buffalo, NY, and New Mexico!
 

One Fund

You may have been part of church campaigns in the past during which you were asked to give a second gift ‘above and beyond’ your usual gifts to make special initiatives like new buildings and new ministries possible. Normally, you gave that gift to the “Building Fund” and you also continued to give offering to the “General Fund.”

This type of giving is potentially confusing to people who either don’t have a baseline for their “usual giving” or who aren’t able to really celebrate the total giving they are engaging in at Encounter in one single number. We believe that it is all ONE MISSION that we’re on – the mission to call people into an encounter with Jesus Christ.

The UNFINISHED initiative will last for two years. In those two years, every gift that is given to Encounter Church will go to Unfinished – to help us faithfully trust God beyond our borders, walls and ourselves.

Frequently Asked Questions

During this two-year period, every contribution to God through Encounter is a contribution to our Unfinished initiative. Every aspect of the ministry vision God is calling us towards for the next two years will be funded through Unfinished. Every gift made will go into the same fund and will be our Unfinished giving. Therefore, every weekend becomes a day to celebrate and contribute towards what God is doing in us and through us to help call people to an encounter with Jesus Christ.
First and foremost, we are asking you pray and seek God’s leading on what He is asking of you. Prepare your heart to hear Him, and then listen to what He says. Engage in a Growth Group during this season, if you haven’t already. Spend time in personal reflection with God in the Unfinished booklet you receive. Talk with your spouse, your family, or others about what this commitment will mean for this next exciting season of your life. We are asking that you make a sacrificial commitment to gospel-centered generosity – whatever it is that God leads you to do. Follow His leading. Finally, we ask that you prepare to be amazed. It is an awesome God we serve. He is moving in huge ways, and we anticipate an unprecedented impact from our collective Unfinished commitments – something only God can do. Please mark your calendar for Commitment Sunday, April 2, and prepare to experience a life-changing worship service that will forever be remembered as a defining moment for our church and for our own faith
Be creative as you explore ways you and your family can give towards Unfinished. You might have some stocks, property, or other items of that nature. Or you may have some stored resources that God has blessed you with in the past that He just might be calling you to give out of during this time. Please contact Kristin at finance@encounterchurchofpalmyra.org if you have questions about non-cash generosity, and we would be happy to help you give in this way
We are asking everyone to make a two-year commitment: 24 months. The fulfillment period for your commitment will begin with our First Big Give on Sunday, April 23, 2017 and it will culminate in April of 2019.
If you are someone currently seeking to make payments to pay off debt right now, we commend you for making progress on that. And you should continue to do so. We would be happy to help you in this journey. Being in debt does not, however, make someone “excused” from giving. Giving isn’t about what God wants from you; rather, it’s about what God wants for you. So it should be our joy and privilege to give at all times. Please contact us if you need assistance with this or if you would like to speak with a budgeting counselor, and we would be honored to help.
Unfinished is about your total, radical, sacrificial generosity to God’s mission at Encounter. We believe that God calls us to action in times of hardship just as much as He does in times of abundance, and that looks different for every person. But Unfinished is about a heart change – one that is only accomplished by surrendering our lives completely over to God in this area of giving. So that may mean that you are being challenged to sell things, to pick up odd jobs, or even to trust God in faith by making a commitment that you don’t quite know how to fulfill right now but that you believe God will provide for as you seek for ways to sacrifice and work towards that commitment. We would like for 100% of us to be a part of Unfinished so that we can all be supporting, loving, encouraging, and praying for one another through this spiritually-stretching season at Encounter.
Unfinished was crafted specifically with you in mind. Unfinished is a “one fund” generosity initiative, meaning that it is different from a traditional capital campaign where you are called to give an extra gift above and beyond your normal giving – thus creating two steps for people who aren’t yet giving. Unfinished is a call to sacrificial, gospel-centered generosity for absolutely everyone at Encounter. If you have never given before, this is your chance to get in the game with a committed sacrifice.
Unfinished is about the vision for our church and our personal discipleship in giving as followers of Jesus. We believe that the local church is one of the most compelling missions to give towards, and we would really love for you to make Encounter your home and join us in Unfinished. If you are ready for it, this is a perfect time for you to put a stake in the ground and make this your church. We need you on the team!
Great question. People take different spiritual steps at different times. Some people begin praying before they begin attending church. Others begin going to a Growth Group before they begin talking to God in prayer. Giving is another spiritual step, and it comes at different times for different people. One thing is for sure, however. Just like other spiritual disciplines, giving draws us closer to God. And God is calling ALL of us to give. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be – Matthew 6:21. Whether you have taken the spiritual step of following Jesus or not, we would encourage you to still join us in this Unfinished initiative. We firmly believe it will draw you closer to God and hopefully to a place where you are ready to make the decision to surrender your life and become a devoted follower of Jesus.

Resources

Week 1

GOD CALLS US TO THINGS WE CANNOT YET SEE.

Sermon

Week 2

SACRIFICE BEGINS
IN THE HEART.

Sermon

Week 3

Unfinished Surrender.

Sermon

Week 4

Unfinished Belief.

Sermon

Week 5

Commitment Sunday!

Sermon

Commitment

Commitment Sunday Summery

Unfinished Compilation

The Future

Download The Unfinished Booklet

Check Back Next Week for new videos!

Take a Step.

As you pray and discern how God would ask you to give during this time, use this gift chart as a discipleship tool. Allow it to be something that inspires and challenges you towards greater generosity for Christ’s Kingdom as we all engage in this Unfinished initiative together.

MAKE A COMMITMENT