In 2001, the World Stewardship Summit recommended that an alternative plan, i.e. the Combined Offering Plan be introduced in addition to the already existing plans used by the Seventh-day Adventist Church around the world. This simplified offering plan was voted by the Annual Council of 2002 as another plan available—with the focus on worship and not only on the promotion of a specific ministry and/or mission need. Below is a comparison of some of the details and features either common to all or distinctive to the 3 recognized plans.
Combined Offering Plan
The Combined Offering Plan supports all levels of the church by putting all funds collected into one pool. Every Sabbath, all offerings (including Sabbath School Offerings) received in the pool are distributed according to a voted formula approved by the division: Retained for ministry in the local church is 50-60% of total offerings. The offerings passed on to the General Conference for world mission makes up 20%, and this percentage supports the ministries and needs that are promoted and listed in the Calendar of Offerings. Giving to special projects is also available in this plan. The distinctive feature of this plan is that a significant portion of each week's offering remains directly with the local church for operational and local ministry needs.
Divisions using this plan include ECD, ESD, IAD, NSD, SAD, SID, SPD (Island Fields), SSD, SUD, WAD.
Learn more about the Combined Offering Plan here: https://stewardship.adventist.org/combined-offering
Calendar of Offerings
In this plan, separate offerings are promoted and received during the worship service following the approved calendar of offerings as voted by the General Conference committee every year. About 26 Sabbath offerings of the year are assigned to the "local church," and these offerings help support the budget of the local congregation. All loose offerings (not in marked envelopes) will go to the offering of the day. A typical month would look like this:
Other categories, as well as institutions and special offerings, feature over the weeks of the span of each year. Other distinguishing features of this plan are: In this plan, 100% of the mission offerings taken at Sabbath School are passed on to the General Conference for world mission. This plan makes provision for giving towards "special projects" and needs, and one is to write down their choice of project on the tithe and offering (or other) envelope. accordingly. All plans assume that God's tithe has taken first place in the financial priorities of the faithful steward.
Divisions using this plan include: EUD, Israel Field, MENA, SPD, TED
Personal Giving Plan
The Personal Giving plan organizes the financial needs of the church into three categories and offers a suggested percentage of income for each given category. They are: Local Church Budget (3-5%). This would include utilities, maintenance, insurance, school operating expenses, children's magazines, teaching supplies, staff salaries, bulletins. Conference Advance Budget (1- 2%) for Christian education, local evangelism, Vacation Bible School, summer camps, union magazines, etc. World Budget (1-3%) This is given to support global mission needs of the church as promoted in the approved Calendar of Offerings. Sabbath School offerings are received and treated the same way as in the Calendar of offerings plan. This plan also has provisions for giving towards special projects.
Divisions using this plan: NAD