Does text and online giving make tithing impersonal?

Does digital giving detract from worship?

Swipe, click, scroll: sometimes everything we do feels like it’s mediated by a screen. At times, life can quickly grow mechanic, detached, or impersonal. In a world where we pay bills, book flights, and buy groceries online, should we give that way too?

It's a question that's often followed up by more questions, like: 

  1. Does text and online giving detract from the intimate experience of worship?
  2. How do we take advancements in technology and use them to advance the Church?
  3. How do we keep giving personal in a digital world?

We think that, as with a lot of things, the intention behind something will inform its function—technology is no different.

Some technologies are personal. That might seem like a laughable oxymoronpersonal technologybut what if it were true?  

Designed with intention, Smart Giving keeps giving personal

We designed Smart Giving with intention, an intention to preserve the sacredness of worship because giving isn't a transaction. Unlike other services, when it comes time to tithe, you won’t be asked to add “missions” or the “building fund” to your cart and proceed to “checkout.” You'll navigate with a few taps on the thing you keep closest for longest: your phone.     

Here’s what one Smart Giver, who was worried about text and online giving being too impersonal, realized:  
...Giving online for me is too much like paying a bill. I put in my information, I set my amount to be paid each month and then walk away. It’s forgotten. Sure, the church gets my offering, but I no longer have a connection to it. For me, it becomes an obligation rather than an act of worship. This past Sunday, I tried out text giving just for fun. But something unexpected happened. As I was putting in the phone number, creating a new contact, and adding my debit card info, I experienced a sense of joy and satisfaction. Was the church still getting charged a fee for this? Yes. So, why was this different? It’s because texting is personal. I text all the time with the people that God has brought into my life. We share joy, sorrow, and need with the click of a keyboard. As I sent off my giving text into digital space, I was thanking the Lord for the finances He had given me. I was worshipping Him for His continued love and provision for me. It was personal.
Rather than making giving impersonal, Smart Giving actually kept the relationship between the giver, God, and the gift intact--allowing us to interact with our church in the same way we interact with almost every other thing, on our phones. If you're interested in seeing Smart Giving in action, watch the demos below.

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We unleash generosity by empowering churches with inspirational, actionable content and Give.Church—a text, in-app, and online giving solution designed to engage new givers.