A high percentage of churches have turned to virtual and live streamed worship while social distancing guidelines are in place.

I have been attending a number of worship services each week (one of the positives during these uncertain times!) and I have been struck by how many online services omit the “offering” part of the service.  This is a mistake.

We need to be practical and pastoral about asking for money, while at the same time keeping our ministries funded.

At an appropriate time in the service, include an “offering moment” where you briefly talk about how the church is ministering during Covid-19 or focus on the mission of the church and then invite folks to make their offering.  Remind people how they can give.  Provide a side screen with the church’s address to send checks, website for online giving, or telephone number where they can text or phone in a gift.  Special offering music can follow the offering announcement to give them time to respond.  This covers the practical.

Now, for the pastoral.  Speak a word of grace.  Acknowledge that there are folks who have lost jobs or are on furlough and simply cannot afford to give at this time.  Remind people that this is reality and it’s all right.

Finally, don’t send a message of panic.  Panic may get some people to contribute once, but in the long run it undercuts the confidence in your ministry and ultimately your financial offerings.

John V Clark, President/Partner
The James Company
815.353.8997 (cell)
Visit us:  www.jamescompany.com