Amid the many outcomes of our Recession-plagued culture, reducing or eliminating charitable gifts definitely makes the list. Many churches and other Christian organizations have suffered financially, as a result. Thankfully, God has allowed eGiving to provide solutions for this dilemma, helping ministries like yours keep your doors open and continue to build the Kingdom, as God directs.
Identical Barna polls were taken during the months of November 2008, January 2010, and April 2011, asking givers about changes to their charitable donations to churches and parachurch organizations over the previous 3 months. An alarming 20%, 29%, and 30% of those surveyed had reduced the amount they gave over that time period. Even more concerning is the fact that of those who had lessened their giving, 22%, 27%, and 24% stopped giving to such ministries altogether. Of course, during those years, ministries still had mortgages and rent, utilities and maintenance, salaries and services to pay for and provide.
As the co-founders of eGiving saw during their early Christian experience, this kind of dropping off of funding often gives way to devastating effects. George and Louise Eusterman saw such tragedies, first-hand, as dedicated, well-trained missionaries returned from the fields they had painstakingly raised funding to serve. They had found pledged funding unreliable, disallowing them to provide for their families. Missionaries aren’t the only ones that have faced such deflating frustration, though. In the wake of the recession, many churches and other ministries have had to downsize or even close their doors.
Unlike pledge-based systems, eGiving offers a more reliable alternative: recurring electronic giving. Even during the economic downturn, our program has proven to allow ministries to retain 95% of givers, 5 years after those givers have made their initial commitment. Even with that kind of assurance, some ministry leaders may feel reticent to make the change.
When ministries follow our direction regarding how to communicate their reasoning to their giver base, they often experience only positive results, similar to those the Eustermans saw in their first-time implementation of an EFT-based payment system. They were seeing many detrimental effects of delinquent monthly health club dues and took a major leap of faith in requiring electronic payments from all monthly payers. Much to their surprise and delight, this change meant losing only 3 of their 400 members — and all of them returned within the year! The Eustermans credit this bold move with the resulting growth they saw as their health club grew to over 5,500 members over the next decade-and-a-half.
Especially for those whose Kingdom vision transcends keeping bills paid and doors open, the electronic giving tools available through eGiving, along with our thorough training, guidance, and support, can help empower you to continue ministering, even in these difficult days.
Since 2000, eGiving has served to assist in funding Christian ministries with effective strategies & tools of electronic giving (recurring & online giving). eGiving serves both churches as well as para-church ministries (including schools, pregnancy centers, missions, and works of mercy).
Image credits: Top by Michael Flippo – Fotolia; Bottom Fotolia.