Methodology & Approach

Core Capital Campaigns are spirit-centered and stewardship-focused. Conducted in three phases—Discern, Study and Ask—the campaign experience produces financial, spiritual, strategic, and ministry strengthening benefits. Each phase is adapted to a client’s size and community culture.

We consider a campaign successful when it has not only reached its financial goal, but has also involved a wide range of supporters, strengthened relationships and leadership structure, and produced a sense of community accomplishment.

We believe fundraising is a ministry and an opportunity to engage all members in a deeper understanding of stewardship. Therefore, annual and planned giving services are an integral part of every campaign as well as a review of endowment management policies and practices.

Our capital campaigns revitalize faith communities by helping them identify and empower new leaders, creating opportunities for mission and service, renewing their capacity to tell their story, and raising the resources they need for mission and ministry.

Discernment invites the congregation to be involved in stating the deeper reason for making an investment in your future. All in your faith community are given the opportunity to provide input - not just into what projects should be included, but what kind of ministry the projects will enable to stay or grow. This is energizing!  And it is the foundation to success of a campaign.

By the end of Discernment, there is wide awareness of the projects to be included in a capital campaign and their costs, and, most importantly, WHY projects or ministry needs funded through the campaign are important to the future of your church.

Your Core Capital Campaigns consultant will guide and coach you, respecting the culture and unique circumstances of your congregation. Through spiritual focus, engaging diverse voices, establishing communications strategies and strengthening volunteer leadership, Core will help you build a strong foundation for success in the actual campaign.

The Feasibility Study is designed to formally assess your readiness for a capital campaign. Through a formal survey offered online or in writing, as well as personal interviews, an effective study will answer five questions:

  1. Does the community understand the need for a campaign?
  2. Do they agree with it?
  3. Will they work to support it?
  4. Will they contribute financially?
  5. If so, how much?

A written Feasibility Study report will be formally presented to the congregation based on the information, opinions, and ideas gathered throughout the personal interview and survey process. The report will contain an analysis of this information as well as an explanation of the methodology used to arrive at the final recommendations.

The ASK (or Invitation) phase uses information and recommendations from the Feasibility Study and the strong foundation established during the Discernment phase to launch a successful campaign.

Through training, communication and management oversight, your Core Capital Campaigns consultant will guide your leadership to ensure completion of the campaign in a timely manner. The work of this phase includes developing a written campaign plan with detailed timelines for key milestones, training and mentoring all campaign committees, staff, and volunteers, and mechanisms to track and report progress.

The “WHY” of your campaign will come to life beautifully in professionally designed and produced campaign materials. Our turn-key campaign communications package with every campaign includes campaign logo design, printed materials, and a campaign website. We can also facilitate online giving through our strategic partnership with GivingTools online giving.

Direction will also be given for post campaign activities to ensure successful follow-up and planning mechanisms are in place.



Core Capital Campaigns consultants are experienced in guiding congregations to financial success. As joyful as that is, we also celebrate how this three phase process results in benefits beyond the fundraising, including:

  • Spiritual benefits - Congregations are energized by new awareness of why they love the church and each other as they pray together for the Holy Spirit’s prompting.
  • Strategic benefits - Congregations come together to create a shared understanding of what’s needed to be the best representative of Christ that they can be.
  • Strengthening benefits - Congregations learn lessons that strengthen their planning and stewardship ministries, such as: the importance of vision and strong communicating, and explaining the different ways to give, including annual and planned giving.

Where is God calling you today?  We want to hear your story. We can offer perspective and discuss how our strategic, spirit-centered approach can guide you in funding your vision. Contact any of us directly!

Linda Buskirk

Leslie G. Pendleton

Maurice J. Seaton, CFRE