The United Thank Offering (UTO) is a ministry of The Episcopal Church for the mission of the whole church. Originally it was started in the 1880’s to support missionary work. Through UTO, individuals are invited to embrace and deepen a personal daily spiritual discipline of gratitude. UTO encourages people to notice the good things that happen each day, give thanks to God for those blessings and make an offering for each blessing using a UTO Blue Box. UTO is entrusted to receive the offerings, and to distribute the 100% of what is collected to support innovative mission and ministry throughout The Episcopal Church and Provinces of the Anglican Communion.
Here is a recent video on the UTO
“When I was a parish priest I had a parishioner who asked me is it possible to give thanks and not be selfish about it. Is my being thankful for the ways that I have been blessed is that being selfish? Well, if I stop there I guess it is but if I’m truly thankful then my way of living becomes a way of thankful living and then I discover that I have not been blessed so that I can keep the blessing I have been blessed to be a blessing to others and when that happens that may be the greatest altruism possible by human beings
“The United Thank offering wisely long ago became a way for because Episcopalians and other people of Goodwill to join together to be a blessing gratitude and attitude that can change your life and our lives and that can change the world “
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry
The UTO Board received almost $1.8 million in requests in 2022 from 42 applications and were able to fund 22 grants, including two historical grants. They had $1,051,154.14 available to award in 2022.
Over the next 3 years, The United Thank Offering, in the spirit of Matthew 25:36, will focus on areas of ministry that serve those who society has left out and left behind. Therefore, the UTO grant focus for 2023 will be on innovative mission and ministry projects addressing all aspects of the worldwide incarceration crisis, specifically:
- preventative programs and intervention;
- prisoner support outreach;
- prison reform work;
- or post-prison re-entry.
Jerusalem Greer, Staff Officer for Evangelism, points out that “Jesus says we are to love God, and to love our neighbor as ourselves. What if we could see all of creation as our neighbor? How would that change our prayers and our actions? Anytime we use the toil of our hands to bring newness and restoration to the world, cultivating gratitude and love alongside clean water and healthy soil, we become part of God’s healing process in creation. How better to love all our neighbors?”
Make a donation by writing a check to St Peter’s and putting UTO in the memo line. The ingathering will begin on Sunday, May 21th and the intake will take place on Pentecost, Sunday, May 28th. This offering is a great way to express gratitude for the blessings of this life.