Pastor's toolBox
7/9/09 at 03:33 PM 1 Comments

No cash or check? No problem. Try a Giving Kiosk.

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You leave home in a rush as usual. It is only as you sit in the chapel and the collection plate is passed that you realize you have no cash and you have left your checkbook at home. This is a dilemma for many these days. In a world where paper currency is seldom required, society has learned to live with a debit or credit card close at hand. This leaves churches with questions of how to deal with this growing problem. One innovative answer is the giving kiosk. Built like an ATM machine, the giving kiosk can be set up in a church lobby, or the foyers of non-profit organizations, ready to assist those wishing to donate by using their debit or credit card.

One of the pioneers in this emerging technology is Pastor Marty Baker, the founder of SecureGive in Georgia. Baker states, "I wanted to customize giving to the way people live their lives, with a debit card in hand." Out of that SecureGive was born. Stevens Creek Church, where Baker is the founder and Senior Pastor, saw their giving double. In fact, almost every church that has installed SecureGive's software has seen a significant increase in charitable donations. In cases such as a local church in New York, giving has doubled every year since installing the giving kiosks.

Another leader in the industry is GivingKiosk located in North Carolina. President/CEO Vann Duggins and his team have been working with churches and nonprofit organizations to solve the growing need for convenience in the world of contributions. According to Duggins, one of the greatest things about the giving kiosk is, "From the moment you receive your GivingKiosk TM, your members are in the database and ready to give." Christian City Church (C3) in North Carolina, chose GivingKiosk as their giving solution. Susan Marie Cook with C3 states, "GivingKiosk has brought us into the next generation of the giving process."

The naysayers can say what they will, but when churches look at the fact that not only are giving kiosks convenient for their congregation, but they save precious staff and volunteer time, they may change their minds. In 2007 the IRS put a rule into effect that any contribution under $250 must be documented. In light of this, the giving kiosk could be an invaluable tool. Not only is it convenient as an electronic transaction, but once completed the money is exchanged and each party has record of the contribution. The time saved in manual processes deserves some consideration.

The debate regarding giving kiosks in the church lies in the fact that some consider them too worldly for a Godly setting. Churches are weighing new technologies and conveniences versus tradition. But in order for the church to change with the people it seeks to serve, it has to change with the times as well. Giving kiosks save time and money, two things in today's world that are precious commodities.

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