The church I attend is plenty modern and forward-thinking. Our website is professional-looking and well-designed. Our music is upbeat and current. (We’ve even had a Jesus Rapper a time or two, plus one iPad-assisted auto-tune in recent memory.) We can sign up for events digitally and even click-to-give. Which is something I’m mulling over just now.
Since I recently stopped carrying a purse, I’m moving rapidly towards any option that permits me to avoid writing a check. I’m digitizing and simplifying whenever possible. This means the end of putting a check in the offering basket on Sunday. At this point, though, I’m pondering the practice of passing the plates to begin with. This practice has strong ties with “old style” church attendance, namely, social pressure to give. Isn’t it something of a relic in a modern church?
I understand the monetary necessities of church. It’s not as though I believe there is no necessity of contributing. If you attend church, you should contribute. It’s the structure of plate-passing that gives me pause. Are there not numerous ways churches can provide an opportunity to give without it being so repugnantly placed in the midst of the service while the audience is captive? At my church, there are sign-up kiosks whenever major events take place, allowing members to sign up before or after service with a staff helpers. Could there not be something just like this for giving, in addition to the “Give On-line” button on the website and reminder of its availability in the program? Or just unmanned stations with a deposit opening for cash or checks and a card reader for debit or credit giving?
I wonder if this is on the radar for our church in the future. It should be. What say you?