Friday, November 30, 2012

Jump the Fiscal Cliff - Increase Collections - Get Online Giving in Place Now!

Recent data from Barna and from Pew Research show that we continue to donate regardless of the economic "terrain".  Make it easy for parishioners and visitors to support your parish efforts for the holidays and beyond.

Our calendar helps us to step back and be grateful for the abundant blessings we have.  As we wind down the year, many of us step up our gifts and contributions to worthy causes.  If your parish has Online Giving in place,  this is a time to remind people to update their gift amounts or to add that special gift for flowers or a special remembrance.

If you do not have Online Giving in place then now is the time.  You can have everything set up in a few hours, and parishioners and visitors can give online.  Make sure you spend some time at Mass and through other announcements and newsletters to remind people to give both online and through envelope contributions.  Your parish may have a special outreach program or gift program for Christmas.  Provide people the option to give a financial gift online to support the purchase of goods for families. 

See the stories about parish experiences at our web site .  Online Giving has proven to streamline and stabilize cash flow,  support income through weather incidents, and increase gift amounts from parishioners. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Go Irish! Great Football and a Successful Foundation

I have thoroughly enjoyed seeing the Irish return to their (in my humble opinion) deserved position in college football rankings.  As a "double - Domer" I guess I'm twice as happy!  The good news for Notre Dame is that I consider the football entertainment as a sideline to the true value of the university and its programs. And successful operations.  Notre Dame has created a strong base of contributions and donations that have helped to build new and exciting programs that advance education and also outreach.
This reminds me of some of the points made in a book by J. Clif Christopher titled, "Not Your Parent's Offering Plate". In the book Christopher challenges church leaders to assess what they are doing in their church and the evidence of the results. He asks why people give to universities like Harvard. The answer:  because they believe in the leadership of the organization and they support the "product" the organization delivers. There are lives changed by the experience at Harvard (or of course I would say Notre Dame), and lives should be changed through our church experience.

Our pastors and staff do so many good works that go unheralded. Its important that we relate some of the information about how we serve parishioners and the impact our parishioners, pastors and staff have on the community. Because these acts of service and kindness are meaningful evidence of our stewardship and our Christianity.

So you ask what does this have to do with Online Giving? In the past months of blog history there are a number of examples confirming the increase in contributions that parishes have seen from Online Giving. But if your parish has responded to the need that we all have to give, and informs you about the use of funds and talents and associated results of the use of funds, then you likely see a far greater sustained increase.

Use Online Giving to provide a convenient tool for parishioners and visitors to contribute financially to the parish. Your focus on the direction of the parish, the good deeds of the parish, and the use of the finances help to inform and support the purpose of those financial contributions.

So, I'm watching the Irish play football. But I'm contributing to programs that form young men and women. And I'm contributing to my parish as we provide services to students and to those in need in our town in South Carolina.

What is your experience?  Have you tried Online Giving?