Super SundayPosted: February 7, 2016
A few weeks ago Taylor, the youth pastor at our church asked if I would be the auctioneer for a cake auction fundraiser the church was having to raise money for youth mission trips. Anybody who knows me, knows that being a charity auctioneer is my favorite job, so I quickly said yes. What most people don’t know is that as Finance Chair at church I had been strongly encouraging Taylor to raise more money, something she did not love to do.
Taylor and I had to lunch to prep for the auction. The youth council had planned a soup and grilled cheese sandwich lunch for the bargain price of $5 per person to get people to come to the auction. They had recruited the finest of church bakers to make some fabulous cakes, pies, cookies, cupcakes and even banana pudding. The youth had set up the lunch, manned the bake sale table where small items were sold, and acted as spotters for me at the auction.
Taylor had set a goal of $3,000 to raise for summer mission trips. I secretly was worried about reaching that goal with 14 sweet items, but I did not tell Taylor that. The auction had a football theme given that it is Super Bowl Sunday. Taylor make a football field on the front wall of the fellowship hall. High school senior, Jack High was my Vanna White to model the cakes as they were auctioned and to fill in the football field in as we reached each $300 down on the field to get to $3,000.
I was a little bit on my back foot before the auction started since I have a bad cold and the sound system broke thanks to many crock pots of soup blowing out fuses in the old fellowship hall electrical panel. Thank goodness for my naturally loud voice and a very attentive full room of people.
Before the first sweet item was even offered for auction Taylor told me we had $1,200 in donations. A nice any to start any charity event. I was still unsure of how this church crowd would bid. “This is not a sale at Walmart,” I told them. “This is a charity for our youth group, so plan on paying big bucks for these sweet treats.”
And pay they did. Once people got over the shock that a cake should bring in a few hundred dollars each, people really got into the spirit of things. Children bid — of course with permission from their parents, older people bid — even though they had no need for a giant carrot cake, friends bid against each other, all in good fun.
We reached $3,000 with many cakes still to go, so I told the room let’s go for $5,000. At the end, when all the money was counted the youth group had raised $5,500. It was exhilarating for them to see their hard work pay off. My favorite part was that Taylor had so much fun raising the money. Thanks to all the bakers, the table setter uppers, the grilled cheese makers, the soup cookers, the bidders and the winners who over paid for a yummy dessert that will help kids do mission work where they learn more about themselves when they help other people. I would say it certainly is Super Sunday.