“It was like the bottom fell out.”
The comment came from a pastor in a micro consultation I hosted. He was both concerned and perplexed. He could not understand why the decline was taking place, and why it was so sudden.
In a great discussion at Church Answers, a number of pastors were discussing this same phenomenon. Their insights were varied and helpful.
What are some possible reasons church giving can take a seemingly dramatic turn downward? As we work with churches, we often see these five reasons.
- The church’s membership and attendance mix changed during the year. The common scenario is the loss of a few high-giving families replaced by newer lower-giving families. In these cases, leadership is often caught off guard because there was no corresponding attendance decline.
- The movement to digital giving has been too slow. If church leaders are not emphasizing digital giving options, there will likely come a day where giving begins to drop precipitously. Non-digital givers tend to give when they are physically present at a worship service. They often skip giving when they are not present. Digital givers are more likely to schedule their gifts on a regular schedule.
- There is a quiet protest movement in the church. I don’t like it when church members hold back giving when something does not go their way. Frankly, I would rather they go to another church they can support regularly. But financial protests are sadly common. I recently spoke to one pastor who discovered this ugly reality when the church introduced projection screens in the worship center. I am not kidding.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Thom S. Rainer