Apportionment giving by South Carolina United Methodists remained strong in 2023 – nearly reaching the 90 percent level.
The 2023 rate of 88.9 percent was down slightly from 89.2 percent in 2022, said Beth Westbury, conference treasurer and director of administrative services for the South Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church.
Apportioned funding – one of the main pillars of the United Methodist Connection – is a way of giving that proportionally allocates the church-wide budget for payment by local churches and annual conferences. A local church’s assigned portion of giving supports conference, national and international ministries.
“I am heartened by the generosity and missional focus of South Carolina United Methodists,” said Bishop L. Jonathan Holston, resident bishop of the South Carolina Conference. “As we move forward together, breathing and believing, this investment in the day-to-day work of making disciples of Jesus Christ continues to hew hope within all of the communities we serve.
“Our apportionment giving is a tangible representation of our connection through the love, grace and saving power of Jesus Christ.”
Westbury reported that 80 percent of the conference’s 953 local churches paid 100 percent of their apportionments last year – roughly the same percentage that paid 100 percent in 2022. Eighty-three percent of churches paid at least 75 percent of their apportionments and 88 percent paid at least 50 percent – both stable from the previous year.
“I greatly appreciate the confidence our churches have shown in the mission and ministry of the Conference,” Westbury said. “We remain faithful in our efforts to develop our church leaders, engage our communities, and grow disciples.
“We could not do this without our churches and their dedicated support. I give a heartfelt thank you to each one.”
Other highlights from 2023 apportionment giving included:
• The Orangeburg District had the highest giving rate (98.9 percent), followed by the Charleston District (93.8 percent), and the Columbia District (93.1 percent).
• Four districts increased the percentage of their apportionment giving – Greenville, Greenwood, Hartsville and Orangeburg.
• The percentage of churches participating in apportionment giving in some amount remained strong – dipping slightly to 94 percent, from 97 percent in 2022. The Orangeburg, Rock Hill and Spartanburg districts were recognized for having 100 percent of their churches participate at some level.