2020 Year in Reviewfinancial overview
The calendar page turned to 2020, and ambition and idealism were in the air. As the clock ticked, we learned a few hard lessons: our best laid plans can be disrupted, sometimes our strength is in our creative flexibility, and the goodness and grace of Christ’s Kingdom remain eternally unstoppable.
In this review of the last year, we do as we always do — celebrate the goodness of God and catalog His gracious work — which we have witnessed in the humble vessel of Reality San Francisco. Let’s take a look back at a year marked by many quick pivots, a community that supports one another through tough times, and seeking spiritual sustenance by settling into a common Rule of Life.
The Early Months
January began with an emphasis on Renewal, worshiping together, and teaching through the book of Acts in the auditorium at Everett. How has renewal looked biblically, and how does the Holy Spirit empower God’s people to seek it in our world today? We explored these questions in our first couple months of the year in our series A Vision for Renewal and A People Empowered.
March 8th marked our last in-person gathering at Everett, as SF took speedy precautions to quarantine, and we acted with conviction to follow suit in service to the most vulnerable among us. Thus began a season of faithfully responding to what was happening day-by-day in our House to House teaching series.
Flattening the Curve
As SF rates of infection fell and restrictions eased, our Sunday worship continued to shift. We produced Sunday services from our Fellowship Hall at Reality HQ with the help of extraordinary volunteers. Added to our time of worship and teaching, we worked within our pandemic limitations and hosted Pop-Up Communion stations at parks throughout SF.
Throughout this time, we aimed to turn our gaze heavenward for some much needed perspective in anxious times through our teaching series Reality Remastered and Strangely Dim.
As the seasons began to shift, so did we – again! We started recording and live-streaming from our old church home, The Swedish American Hall, positioning ourselves to gather together in person as soon as permitted. Also noteworthy, the significant uptick in our technical media needs allowed us to hire our AV Director, Nate Miller!
In the midst of all this change, we re-addressed what it means to experience and participate in God’s transformation through our Re-Vision series. Then we ended the year focusing on the timeless character of God in our teaching series God Forever.
“Whether it was in-person communion pop-ups, service with some of the church’s Renewal Partner Organizations, or going out for burritos, I’ve watched new and life-giving friendships begin to bud in the face of a year of unprecedented isolation.”– Hayden
Serving One Another
Ministry & Outreach
This year meant shifting not only our Sunday rhythms, but the ways we engaged personally and financially as well. This was most evident in how you chose to show up in service of each other and our city.
In our initiative No Need Among Us, we encouraged you to reach out to at least one other person in our church to partner with God in meeting their needs – whether physical, emotional, or spiritual. We also encouraged you to give to our Benevolence Fund, which directly supported individuals and families who had expressed a need.
Beyond our church, we were able to: make a $50K donation to San Francisco’s COVID-19 Response Fund, host three Everett Supply Drives which helped 250 families receive thousands of essential items, prepare and deliver 18,000+ meals, collect 2,000+ items in support of our Renewal Partners, and so much more!
And for our Year-End Giving Campaign, you joined us in committing to and raising $250K in support of two local schools and churches across the country who were disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.
So thank you for all the ways you cared for and served one another this year. And a special thank you to the over 200 people who signed up for our COVID-19 Response Team (now Outreach Team), and have been actively meeting the needs of families, the physically vulnerable, and people experiencing homelessness all year long.
“It’s a privilege to serve alongside Reality SF’s Outreach Team; to live out the vision of ‘on earth as it is in heaven.’ Like the parable comparing the kingdom of God to yeast being worked into the dough, it’s a joyful experience to see the church community rising up and committing to serving one another. During a challenging year of COVID-19, I’m grateful for the daily invitation to practice generosity and the opportunity to grow in faith and empathy.”– Lillian
If limitation breeds creativity, then 2020 provided in full, especially when it came to staying connected to our Creator and to one another. Out of our limitations came a new podcast, Communion Pop-Ups, Fall Rule of Life, Zoom Prayer Rooms, virtual Courses, All-Church Trivia, an outdoor service – and this doesn’t even include all the creative ways our Community Groups stayed connected.
We heard tales of groups who held virtual cooking sessions, had prayer chains, driveway hang outs, socially-distanced Sunday service viewings in the park, and so much more. We know this only scratches the surface of all the creative ways you connected with one another this year.
“Surviving COVID wasn’t a given. We don’t take for granted that our community has stayed knitted-together. We are thankful that people have joined Zoom CG after a long day full of Zoom work meetings; that we have supported each other through layoffs and unemployment; that we have found ways to celebrate new births and new jobs and moves in socially-distanced ways.”– Kaylee
We released 107 podcast episodes full of encouragement, guided reflection, and prayer, as well as deeper cut inquiries in current events.
Our roots of being a praying church continued to deepen through both corporate and one-on-one prayer sessions hosted by the faithful members of our Prayer Team.
Our Communion Pop-Ups were a much needed time to see each other face-to-face – some for the first time! – pray together and gather around the Lord’s Table.
Quarantine was a challenge to Community Groups, but our CG’s remain active with a staggering 83 groups and over 900 active members!
From in-person to virtual sessions, over the entire year we had nearly 1,000 people sign-up for our courses and workshops focusing on Biblical literacy, spiritual gifts, finance, premarital, prayer, and allyship in action (hosted by our Race & Belonging Cohort).
“I love being part of the Prayer Team. I am always encouraged by my teammates’ prayers, testimonies, faith, and encouragements. My favorite part is that I grow deeper in awe of God’s love as I serve. I get to feel a teeny bit of God’s immense heart for people as I pray alongside or for them. I am always amazed at the way He moves in and through people.”– Sara
Creating Space for Families, Kids, & Youth
This year posed an extra challenge to families and the youngest members of our community. Our Marriage & Family Team worked diligently to create spaces and points of connection for our parents, children, and youth to connect and find support.
Our Children’s Ministry, the Village, found new ways to engage our kids through new Sunday rhythms that included reading stories and worshipping together through song and dance.
We hosted two Family Socials, a costume parade in October and canned food drive to support Sunset Youth Services in November.
In October, Pastor Kevin Cooke was able to travel throughout the city to bless and pray for families who wanted to introduce their children to our church family and dedicate them to the Lord.
Reality SF Youth
Our Youth Group experienced amazing growth this year, including three new high school students and four 6th-grade students. They celebrated additions to their leadership with three student-leaders stepping into these new roles.
Although physically apart for most of the year, our Youth Group actually spent more time (albeit virtually) together in 2020 than in 2019! The extra time spent together became time well spent, studying Esther and Nehemiah and growing closer to each other and the Lord than ever before.
“To serve our youth in this year of chaos and uncertainty has been an amazing privilege. To watch them grow; to be able to see the world through their eyes and their insights is a glimpse into God’s potential for what could be for our church, our communities, and our world. They embody all that we hope and pray for.”– Gennie
Sharing Our Resources
2020 Financial Overview
During a year where many of us saw expectations unmet, you exceeded ours with your generosity for our church, city, and world. Because of your consistent and sacrificial giving, our capacity to pour out our resources was able to grow as we continue to seek renewal in our city.
In 2020, we provided over $1 million of support to local outreach initiatives, missionaries, partner organizations, and church plants – that is the most we have ever been able to provide! One of the ways we exceeded that mark was through our 2020 Year-End Giving Campaign. We were able to raise $255,000 to help churches around the country that were disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, as well as provide funding for youth by supporting two local schools. Thank you so much for your continued support and generosity!
Learn more about our approach to generosity and financial accountability, our 2019 CPA-Reviewed Financial Statement, and ECFA accreditation.
If you’d like to receive a Monthly Financial Reports email about our giving and how it’s lining up with our annual budget and monthly giving goals, subscribe to this list.
|General Net Income:||$400K|
|Justice & Outreach:||$577K|
|Justice & Outreach:||$660K|
Designated Net Income
General & Designated Funds: As a church, we have two categories of funds: general and designated. “General” refers to money given to our General Fund — and therefore, it is not designated for specific ministry and operations expenses. “Designated” refers to money given to either our Benevolence Fund or Justice & Outreach Fund — and therefore, it is designated to those areas of ministry.
Benevolence Fund: directly contributes to helping families and individuals within our church who are in need of emergency financial assistance.
Justice & Outreach Fund: directly contributes to supporting our Local Justice & Global Outreach partner organizations and local missionaries.
2020 General Giving vs. General Expenses
(In thousands of dollars)
* Justice & Outreach: Includes financial partnerships with Renewal Partners Organizations, partial support of local missionaries, and church planting initiatives. Learn more here.
|Justice & Outreach:||$300K|
2021 Proposed Budget & Giving Goal:
* Pending Board of Directors approval.
Vision for the Future
At Annual Vision & Prayer 2021, Dave Lomas was joined by other staff members as we looked back on 2020 and forward to the rest of 2021. Additionally, several leaders and volunteers in our church prayed over specific themes we are highlighting and want to see God move and expand in us as we move forward together as a church. You can watch or listen to the presentation below.