Church Collection Basket Goes Online

For generations of Roman Catholics in the United States, the ritual of attending Mass on Sundays has been intertwined with slipping a numbered envelope into the collection basket.

But in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, churchgoers are letting the basket pass them by in favor of donating online, part of an effort to meld time-tested fund-raising with 21st-century technology.

In October, the archdiocese, which includes 221 parishes in 19 southwestern Ohio counties, became the first in the nation to put in place a comprehensive Internet donation system for its weekly collections. The goal was to generate consistent revenue and to cater to parishioners who have grown accustomed to paying their bills online.

The practice is catching on throughout the country, with the Archdiocese of Chicago allowing parishes to opt into a similar plan, and individual churches experimenting with similar technology.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Blogging & the Internet, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Roman Catholic, Stewardship

3 comments on “Church Collection Basket Goes Online

  1. DonGander says:

    For some reason “paying a bill” and bringing an offering to God seems to be two very different things.

  2. Words Matter says:

    The primary function of the Offertory in the Catholic Mass is to offer ourselves to God, primarily in the offering of bread and wine. Money isn’t meaningless, but it serves as a symbol of our lives. The prayers and praise offered at the Offertory remain the principle liturgical act for the people.

    Besides, as a choir member, stuck up in a balcony at the back, the mechanics of getting the checks into the basket were always a pain. 🙂

  3. Henry Greville says:

    I agree with #2 above. What God requires from us – our hearts and minds and bodies in service – and what the physical Church institution requires to operate are not at all the same. God hardly needs money, but church congregations certainly have bills to pay and salaries to pay their employees, whether ordained or lay, just as do all other not-for-profit organizations.