Hungry people in Texas and around the world need your help. Giving through the Texas Baptist Hunger Offering has dropped greatly this year, but the need has not.
People in poverty need your support now. November has a fifth Sunday, which many churches use to collect Hunger Offering funds. Also direct individual gifts to the offering are being promoted through a Thanksgiving Share-a-Thon. Give by calling toll-free (800) 791-1544 (English or Spanish) or give online at either hungeroffering.org or the Spanish-language site, ofrendacontraelhambre.org.
Through October, Texas Baptists have given $543,518 through the offering. That's a lot of money, but it is down significantly from the $639,080 given during the same period last year. That's a drop of about 15 percent.
This really is a two-year trend. In 2013, Texas Baptists gave $829,938 in the first 10 months. This year's giving represents a decline of more than 34 percent from two years ago.
I'm sure there are varied reasons. The oil boom helped the past two years, and falling oil prices surely have negatively affected many families and churches. But, those same falling prices have helped a bunch of us, as well.
Whatever the reasons, the need for funds is still great. The Christian Life Commission has committed $800,000 in offering funds to anti-poverty ministries next year. At the current giving rate, we will receive only $652,221 this year, and ministry funding will have to be cut drastically next year if giving does not increase.