Posted: 02 Nov 2006 @ 00:00
Eight million churchgoers in the US are now said to make their weekly and
occasional offerings using credit cards.
ParishPay, an electronic system, allows payment to be made to churches
online, ensuring what The New York Times describes as "a steady stream
of revenue, even when summer vacations or winter snowstorms keep people away".
The scheme's slogan is "Making it Easier to Give". It promises to provide
parishes with "the tools and infrastructure needed to contend with sporadic
dips in giving, a more technology-savvy parish membership, and more financial
challenges in keeping our parishes strong and vibrant".
Individual Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Lutheran, and Episcopal churches have
embraced the system, and reports say enrolled parishioners give 60-75 per cent
more. But the Southern Baptists and some other churches reject it, saying they
do not want people to incur debt through credit cards.