The spirituality of mobile giving

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I read everything I can find about fundraising and theology.  I have yet to read anything on the spirituality of mobile giving - please do share if I am missing something! Here's my belief:  the Holy Spirit can guide people who do not have a cheque book (or check book, depending).  We Christian church and charity types should make room for people to give in a variety of ways - including using their smart phone.

Christians believe in the Holy Spirit - God's presence working in mysterious ways.  Theologians have a fancy word for the study of this - pneumatology.

We also believe in promoting generosity, in the spiritual discipline of giving.

Put this together and Christians, more than anyone, should be about making it easy to give.  But we aren't.  Too often we assume potential givers have a cheque book, an envelope and a stamp.  And they don't.

I was at The Pursuit ministry conference last week.  I'm attaching a slide from my workshop on Best Practices for Giving in Churches to make my point.  It applies to any organization: can people donate using their smart phone?

At another workshop, the presenter (Darrell Keezer from Candybox Marketing) offered a box of chocolates to the first person who made a $5 gift to their organization using their phone.  I tried to give to my church but got hopelessly bogged down in the website.  I did not win the prize.

Mobile giving is also about efficiency, social media strategy etc.  There's lots of reasons to embrace it. But for me, it is a theological question at its core: do we want to encourage everyone to give, or only people who have cheque books?

 

 

Lori's picks for The Pursuit Day 2 April 28

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The Pursuit is a Christian ministry conference in London ON April 27-29.  They have a great website The-pursuit.ca.  I thought I'd share my own personal highlight reel to make it easier for folks. Two Thursday themes emerge for me:

Beyond Photocopiers: Technology for Churches day - I'm talking about bringing church giving online, and Michael Daykin is giving a demo of church software.

Healthy Leader, Healthy Organization - Dr. Steve Brown and Angela Draskovic are both diving into holistic management.

Morning Thursday April 27

Dr. Greg Thompson - Keynote speaker, an American pastor and professor interested in cultural change.  I just watched his video.  He talks about a sense of grief in our contradictory and unjust culture.  And he talks about hope.  His timing couldn't be better - grief and hope from the cultural frontlines of America Dr. Greg Thompson 1 min

Demo - Ken Hall from Robertson Hall Insurance.  Dunno about you, but as a fundraiser I have had a number of insurance conversations lately.  Can we host this event?  Can we rent our facility? Definitely one of those 'an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure' topics.

Afternoon Thursday April 27

12 p.m. - I'm presenting Best Practices for Giving in Churches so I know where I'll be.  Lots of other great choices too.  Tim Coles talks about empowering your frontline staff to see themselves as part of ministry and not overhead. Tim Coles 1 min

1 p.m. Dr. Steve Brown from Arrow Leadership will be here to talk about your toughest leadership challenge - self-management.  I've had the pleasure to learn from Steve when he taught at Tyndale for a week when I was in the D.Min. program.  Since then he has a new book.  Really looking forward to hearing him again. Steve Brown - Leading Me

2:20 Product Demo - NCOL.  Micheal Daykin - pastor and software guy.   Church software demo

3 p.m. And the last option in the last session is me! I'm passionate about understanding our Theology of Giving because it influences everything we do!  Other great choices include Angela Draskovic from Yonge Street Mission on Organizational Health

The day finishes with a Jam Session - an opportunity to seek folks with the same interests/roles and compare notes.  And a closing banquet, which is like a jam session with food!

 

 

Lori's picks for The Pursuit, Day 1- April 27

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The Pursuit, a Christian ministry conference in London, Ontario runs from April 27-29.  I'm conducting two workshops (see post Lori speaking at the Pursuit) among the many riches on offer! The-pursuit.ca  has a great website but so much to take in!  I thought it might help people if I shared my picks.  Here's what I'm looking forward to on Day 1 - Wednesday April 27.  I've chosen fundraising and stewardship themes, with a focus on technology.  Many, many more choices available!

April 27 Morning

9:25 a.m. John Stackhouse speaking on diversity in Canada.  I remember John from his insightful writing in the Globe and Mail.

11 a.m. Canada Helps demo from the always enthusiastic Paul Nazareth.  Every church and charity should become familiar with Canada Helps - such a useful service! Gateway to online giving for many!

April 27 Afternoon

There's an abundance of good choices for learning sessions - fortunately, I can watch videos for sessions I can't attend. I'm looking forward to meeting these folks in person, so many of whom I'm already familiar with through social media and/or their books.

12 p.m. Website tips from Darrell Keezer from Candybox Marketing 37 ways your website died (1 min) Other great choices include charity regulation from a seasoned pro, Gil Langerak from the Canadian Council of Christian Charities.

1 p.m. Harry Whyte from Ray of Hope (Kitchener ON) will share how he rebranded and rebuilt Ray of Hope into a more resilent charity.Ray of Hope 2 min

2:20 p.m. Demos - Tithe.ly mobile and web giving - definitely the way things are headed!

Silent Partner donor software.  It will be good to see how this software is being updated.

3 p.m. Human Cloning Time!  How can I choose between these?

Growing Givers' Hearts - Rebekah Basinger.  I have never met Rebekah but I feel like I know her because I have been so inspired by her book Growing Givers' Hearts. She really gets that fundraising is ministry. Growing Givers' Hearts 1 min

Rapid Fire Stewardship - Tim Jenkins, Scott Rodin and Lorne Jackson.  Should be lively! Rapid Fire Stewardship 2 min

Online Engagement & Building Community - by the wonderful folks from Tech Soup. Tech Soup Online Engagement

So that's Day 1.  I'll blog about the rest of the conference on Wednesday!

 

 

 

 

Lori speaking at The Pursuit, April 2016

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I'm looking forward to conducting two workshops about church and money in April, at a conference called The Pursuit.

What's the Pursuit?

It's a new Christian ministry event, jointly hosted by three different groups and supported by many.  Canadians, Americans, and many denominations and types of ministry.  It's good to push the envelope!

Marcia Shetler from the Ecumenical Stewardship Center (an insider!) says an important part of the conference is how "faithful stewardship and generous giving" intersects with the church.   The list of speakers is impressive and stewardship component is part of a conference serving a larger constituency and offering other organizationally-related topics.  (many, many topics in fact - fortunately videos will be available to see the sessions you missed!)

I tried to think of what that would look like and came up with a Venn diagram (when people study Math and then theology, these things happen!)the pursuit

Video links for Lori's workshops

Here's the links to one minutes videos highlighting my two workshops (these will open in new tabs)

Best Practices for Giving in Churches

What (apostle) Paul taught me about Church and Money

How do I attend this conference?

The Pursuit website http://the-pursuit.ca/ explains all the details.