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Church Capital Campaigns

15 Dec. 2017 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

The 7 Steps of a Successful Stewardship-Based Capital Campaign

We find that many churches rush into a capital campaign before the time is right. Let us show you the seven steps you should go through to ensure your church has a successful capital campaign experience.

2 Sep. 2016 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

How to Ask For a Capital Donation

Asking for donations is more stressful than skydiving and public speaking for some people. It actually ranks higher than fear of death for many. After managing over 100 church capital campaigns and nonprofit organization capital campaigns, I have found a way to make it a win/win, stress-free, pleasant experience.

So, when a parish needs a roof, renovation, or whole new facility, how should one ask for a capital donation?
There is some science behind the answer.  The researchers at Villanova have found out what to not do.

19 Jul. 2016 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

Success is Sweet, and As Rare As an Inside The Park Home Run


October 27, 2015 Alcides Escobar hit a leadoff inside the park home run for the Royals during the World Series, the first since 1929. Everyone in Kansas City celebrated.

Last Friday night I celebrated with almost the same level of joy. It was because a pastor did the right thing at the right time, and totally scored a home run for his church. 

23 Jan. 2014 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

Improving Stewardship, Avoiding a Capital Campaign

Church Development circles back on a common statistic to improve stewardship in your church.

Sometimes I’m tempted to repeat blogs because churches need to hear the same information as time goes by.

One such blog was teaching churches how to avoid doing a capital campaign: The key is to fix the lack of stewardship. I noted that this is a broad, evolving issue, but here’s something you can do to start tackling such a large topic:

24 Sep. 2013 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

Is Video Really That Much Better?

Church Development conducts a quick experiment on the effectiveness of different kinds of media.

Over the past few weeks, I've shared a number of videos (including my testimonies of how I came to know Jesus and surviving cancer) highlighting Church Development's partnership with Sistine Films. As covered before, depending on the statistic you use, a well-made video can communicate your message up to 22 times more effectively than other forms of media (yes, that even includes interpretive dancing).

It’s easy to throw statistics around without consequence though, so I figured I’d to run a quick test with you. You’ll need a timer and it will take less than seven minutes total.

1 Aug. 2013 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

How To Avoid Having to Do a Capital Campaign At Your Church

Church Development shares the secret to never having to conduct a capital campaign.

I recently wrapped a series on why Catholic giving is lower than that of Protestants (see parts onetwo, and three, as well as what it’s not). Even if you’re not Catholic, their missteps give insight to every church as to what can stunt generosity.

If you read the series, you know there were many different opinions. However, one opinion that I didn’t share was my own. With 30 years in this industry, helping over 200 churches raise over $200 million, keeping up with the latest studies and trends, etc., I should know something, right? I like to think that I failed enough times that I had no option left but to succeed, so yes, I believe I can cite the one problem churches need to avoid.

Are you ready?

9 May. 2013 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

“Because” vs. “The Cause”

Church Development shares some recent insight on the cause to which we give.

Despite having 30 years in stewardship, I still know that I serve an infinite God. As a result, I am a continual student of stewardship (along with everything else). Recently, a pastor of one of the churches we’re working with addressed his congregation about their upcoming Commitment Sunday.

Though it’s a capital campaign for many things, this pastor reminded them of an important distinction:

9 Aug. 2012 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

Closing Thoughts on Thank You Gifts (Including Gifts for Younger Generations)

Church Development closes this series on the importance of giving thanks in a capital campaign with a quote from Henri Nouwen, a Church Development statistic on the power of thanks, and if the younger generation responds to email thank you notes more than physical thank you notes.

In wrapping this series on the importance of thanks in a capital campaign, I want to give my closing thoughts, as well as address a question we heard lately during a consultation with a church:

Q. What’s an appropriate thank you gift for the younger generation?

Although this question was specifically addressing physical thank you notes vs. email thank you notes (which younger generations seem to connect with more), I have to address the bigger point:

7 Aug. 2012 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

How to Deal with Someone Who is Angry About the Church Spending Money on Thank You Gifts

In today’s entry on the importance of giving thanks in a capital campaign, Church Development shares how to respond to the select few people who’ll be angry about the church spending money on thank you gifts.

In continuing this series on the importance of giving thanks at the end of a capital campaign, I need to address a problem you’re likely to run across: Those who are mad at the church for spending money on thank you gifts. life is sometimes a matter of choosing which problems you want to face, this is a pretty good problem to have, but it’s still a problem. Odds are the select few who are mad at you over this issue are from the highly-involved inner core of your church. I usually tell people to grin and bear it when they’re chewing you out, because they’re your saints. They won’t understand why you’re not giving the money you spent on those thank you gifts to missions and outreach instead. They won’t understand that not everyone in your church gives for the right reasons and that many people are motivated by a thank you gift in advance. They will be the ones who’ll chew you out over spending the money on a stamp to send them that thank you note. (Again, grin and bear it.)

So how do you deal with their anger when it comes up?

2 Aug. 2012 Posted by Denis Greene in Church Capital Campaigns

Capital Campaign Tip: Making Thanks Tangible Before the Campaign Drive

By Flickr user vistamommy [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia CommonsChurch Development looks at how thank you gifts before a capital campaign or annual drive increase giving. 

Last time I talked about the importance of a thank you gift after a capital campaign. However, a thank you gift in advance of the capital campaign or annual drive is also appropriate. This gift tells the giver that their donation is anticipated and appreciated.

People don’t always give for the right reasons, and silly as it may sound, often the least involved in your church—those who likely don’t volunteer and/or who don’t regularly give financially—can be motivated to give by giving them gifts first. Premiums or doodads—small, inexpensive gifts that mention the church and the campaign—can stimulate giving. We’re talking pens with the church info, refrigerator magnets with the campaign prayer on them, etc.

The May 2009 Association of Fundraising Professionals magazine reported on a study that tested response rates to donation solicitations (including mailings). The study found that: