Summer is almost here, and I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for vacation! Taking time off from work is an essential part of staying healthy, especially mentally. Every year millions of people take the time to get away to relax, recharge, and regroup; and that’s great for them, however often it means that weekend attendance is down at church, which unfortunately contributes to a summertime giving slump.
Ideally, you’ve already budgeted for this dip, and have the savings to ride out the 2-3 months that giving is expected to slow down. However, what if this didn’t have to be the case? What if you were able to maintain the level of giving that you usually collect all year round? Well, it’s definitely possible, and here are 3 tips to help you do just that!
Make it Easy and Convenient to Give Remotely
Technology has removed the need to “give in person”. Today, members have multiple ways to give: online through your website, by text, or using their mobile phone. The best thing that you can do to maintain your giving level throughout the summer months is to make it easy for members to give while they’re away.
Chances are that you’re already using, or at least considering using e-Giving within your church. So you already have the software or process in place. Now all you need to do is encourage members to get away and enjoy their vacation, gently reminding them that the church has set up multiple ways for them to give, even while they’re basking away on the white sand beach.
Be Transparent About Finances
If people are committed to your church that means that they love the church, and want to see it prosper. There is power in giving when you know what you’re giving to. Another way to maintain giving throughout the year is always to be transparent about the church's finances. If people aren’t aware that their giving – or lack thereof – significantly impacts the operational budget of the church, then they’re more likely to go on vacation with their money, not recognizing that things could be affected when they come back.
People know that even when they go on vacation, what bills they're still obligated to pay, and that awareness helps to ensure that they leave the rent money at home! Give people the same opportunity to see what financial obligations the church has, and how their giving plays a significant role in keeping things going.
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Show & Thank
The final way of keeping giving consistent is by “showing & thanking.” Show people how their giving is helping to do real ministry within your community. Send an email newsletter with pictures of your last Serve Day or show slides of the Vacation Bible School the church sponsored. Remember, people give where their heart is. If you show them how their church is impacting and blessing the community and how their continued giving is going to help the church do even more – they will give generously.
So you can’t forget to thank them. In my opinion, they should be acknowledged both publicly and privately. As the leader, it’s appropriate to thank them for their generosity over the pulpit; telling them how their gifts are helping the church fulfill its mission. However, if you’re able, also consider mailing a letter to their home address, telling them how much their giving means to the ministry and encouraging them to continue giving, as their generosity not only supports the church but also worships God.
Until Next Time – Keep Learning!