By Thomas Sonni

Founder & President of Greater Mission

If you want your donors or possible donors to love you, your mission, your cause, and your campaigns, there is a foundational rule. OutLove them.

Love them more. Care about them. Pray for and with them. Inspire them. Connect with them. Involve them in your planning. Invite them to live their faith fully. Teach them. Engage them as leaders. Listen to them. Not only before their gift, but after their gift. And before and after their next gift. This is the essence of moving from a transaction-based to a relationship-based mission advancement model.

The Church should be way better at this than any charitable organization, but we are usually way worse. The Church’s entire foundation is built on love. The Church’s donors are family….sisters and brothers in Christ. Their generosity is not to the Church. It is as the Church. The mission is their mission. Jesus taught plainly that it is more blessed to give.

Your mission is to love your donors to be the blessing that they were meant to be. All that blessing really begins and ends with God. They get to join in it when they say Amen or Yes. The Church will begin to reach its potential for mission when each donor realizes their mission potential, beginning with God’s blessing to them and through them. When their loving generosity is united to the cross of Jesus Christ and his living sacrifice in the Eucharist, their power to impact the lives of others becomes multiplied.


Jesus taught plainly that it is more blessed to give.


It has been said that it is not possible to outGive God. How can you if God creates all things, and God is the very source of all giving? It is also true that you cannot outLove God either. But maybe you can outLove your donors. It is your job as a disciple of Christ anyway. You might actually succeed with some donors, which will bless you. But others will just keep trying to outLove you – both being blessed themselves, and becoming God’s blessing as the Church for the mission to which they are invited by Jesus himself.

This is your job and it is awesome. OutLove your donors.


What is possible for your parish? How do you fulfill your tremendous mission potential?
Learn about developing a Parish Development Plan here.