November 2020

Aligning Faith & Finances

Azure, a Calvert Impact Capital portfolio partner, is an initiative that mobilizes capital and technical expertise to upgrade and expand water services for the poor in rural and peri-urban communities of El Salvador. Photo courtesy of Calvert Impact Capital

Welcome to our November issue on “Aligning Faith & Finances,” an important topic for those who turn to God and prayer during these turbulent times. We see the words ‘In God We Trust’ on our currency, and we say “One Nation Under God” in our Pledge of Allegiance because faith has long been a foundation for life in America.

So how do we align our faith with our finances? The writers, as well as the video, in this issue represent different parts of the financial world and faith communities. They look at Biblical ideas, ethical principles and faith-based tools for being Good Stewards of our assets.

I close by mentioning a podcast that I appeared on recently — Impact! with John Shegerian. His podcasts explore trends and solutions to current challenges from innovators and leaders on how they work to make the world a better place. Listen to our wide-ranging conversation here.

Cliff Feigenbaum, founder/publisher

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Loving Our Neighbor in a Time of Crisis-by Stella Tai-Praxis

Loving Our Neighbor in a Time of Crisis

Stella Tai
Praxis Mutual Funds
"How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help? Little children, let us love, not in word or speech but in truth and action." (1 John 3:17-18, NRSV) Traditionally seen as a call to greater charity, in 2020 this verse can provide inspiration for investors to integrate their values and pursue impact through their portfolios as well.

Pursuing Justice Through Faith-Based Impact Investing-by Amanda Joseph-Calvert

Pursuing Justice Through Faith-Based Impact Investing

Amanda Joseph
Calvert Impact Capital
For all investors, but particularly for communities of faith in these turbulent times, the prospect of impact investing offers an abundance of meaningful opportunities to realign and reaffirm how our values support our investment strategies. From a congregation that decides to make a deposit in a local credit union or Black-owned community development bank, or to a church-based pension fund that invests in climate resilience.

Responsible Investment and Faith-Based Investor-by Lloyd Kurtz-Wells Fargo

Responsible Investment and the Faith-Based Investor

Lloyd Kurtz, CFA
Wells Fargo Private Bank
Religious investors have been a vital force in the development of modern responsible investment. Pax World, the first SRI mutual fund in the U.S., was launched in 1971 by two Methodist ministers. In that same year the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility was founded, and over the next half-century ICCR members have been engaging with corporations on issues ranging from the South Africa boycott to climate change.

The Love of Money-by Doug Lynam-Longview Asset Mgmt-GreenMoney

The Love of Money

Doug Lynam
Longview Asset Management
We need to find a way forward that allows us to care for the poor and our planet, without feeling guilty about having money, and enjoying it wholeheartedly for the good it produces in the world and our lives. I suggest being mindful about your money by giving your money some love—the right kind of love. Not avarice or greed, but spiritual love that is mindful of our responsibility to live in alignment with our values.

November 2020 Additional Articles

Pioneer in Faith and Finance for 50 Years-The United Church of Christ-by Timothy Smith-Boston Trust Walden

The United Church of Christ: Pioneer in Faith and Finance and a Force for Change 50 Years Later

Timothy Smith
Boston Trust Walden
The United Church of Christ was present at the creation of a new era in the intersection of faith and finance. In the early 70s, energized by the anti-war and anti-apartheid movements, the women’s movement, and the battle for civil rights, Protestant denominations began to examine how their religious values and social justice positions were reflected in their investing and business decisions.
The Connection Between Investing and Our Values-by Rachel McDonough-Ameriprise

The Connection Between Investing and Our Values

Rachel McDonough
Ameriprise Financial Services
We aren’t owners; we are stewards of the resources that God has given us. This knowledge should radically change the how, where, and why behind our investment strategies. Imagine the impact that would occur when all Christ-following investors use investment capital to deliver community impact, spiritual integration, and financial return. We can take what God has given and put it back into the work He is doing on earth.
Shell International Solar array aerial

Grace vs. Greed: The Church of England Steps into the Climate Breach

Peter McKillop and Kerrie Sinclair
Climate & Capital Media
Adam Matthews, director of ethics and engagement at The Church of England Pensions Board is on the vanguard of a growing trend among activist institutional investors of all sizes who are no longer waiting for governments to tackle the world’s most important and impactful environmental and social issues, particularly climate change.
Faithful Finance-Strategies for Connecting Values and Capital-by Kate Walsh-Global Impact Investing Network

Faithful Finance: Strategies for Connecting Values and Capital to Generate Real-World Impact

Kate Walsh
Global Impact Investing Network
As faith communities know from their decades of advocacy, there is deep benefit in coming together to share knowledge and grow commitments aimed at achieving meaningful real-world changes. Those same lessons can be applied to faith-based investing efforts. As investors, faith communities must learn from each other, coordinate across different groups, and make their collective capital count.
Moving Beyond Child Labor-Faith Investors Must Pay Greater Attention to Market Decisions-by Julie Tanner-Christian Bros Investment Serv

Moving Beyond Child Labor: Faith Investors Must Pay Greater Attention to Impacts on Children from Our Market Decisions

Julie Tanner
Christian Brothers Investment Services
Faith investors have long engaged companies and governments on exploitative practices involving child labor. They have also weighed in on negative infant formula marketing, violent video games, and obesity impacts from junk food over the past four decades. In fact, faith investors are typically the first shareowners to flag negative business impacts on children.



Featured Video

Preaching God's Economy

Preaching God’s Economy

Faith+Finance teamed up with Backstory Preaching to host a conversation on preaching and money and why it is so difficult to talk about God’s economy. The conversation which is moderated by The Rev. Buddy Stallings, retired rector of St. Bart’s Episcopal Church in Manhattan, includes Rev. Canon Rosa Lee Harden; Rev. Amy Butler, Interim Pastor of National City Christian Church in Washington, DC; and former Wall Street Investment Banker and current Senior Pastor of Bethel Church of Morristown, Rev. Sidney Williams.

“One of the most important ways that we can start to have a better conversation in our churches about money is for us to preach about it,” said The Rev. Harden, executive producer of Faith+Finance. “We want to start modeling that conversation to encourage more preachers to take the plunge into the deep end in these difficult times in our economy.”

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