Electronic Donations - Current Status

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dvan
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Electronic Donations - Current Status

Postby dvan » Fri Jan 15, 2010 5:42 pm

With the beginning of the new year, I have given thought to switching to electronic donations for tithing, fast offering, etc. My monthly tithing & contributions payment is literally the only check I usually write each month.

Undoubtedly, the advantages of e-payments and their increased security are well-known to this group. I don't know how many stories I have heard over the years about bishops or their counselors finding tithing envelopes in an old suit coat, etc. When I was bishop, no Sunday went by without a group self-pat-down with my counselors to see if we had any envelopes left.

The impression I received from my prior investigations of this topics was that e-pay was possible, but discouraged, primarily by making the forms, etc., necessary to start the process extremely obscure.

What's the current status/recommendation/attitude toward e-pay for tithing and contributions?

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:56 pm

dvan wrote:The impression I received from my prior investigations of this topics was that e-pay was possible, but discouraged, primarily by making the forms, etc., necessary to start the process extremely obscure.

What's the current status/recommendation/attitude toward e-pay for tithing and contributions?


The Church Donations Department is not set up to receive electronic BillPayments for the convenience of members. However, BillPay to your ward is possible (a paper check will be generated by the bill payment service). See Donations by bill payment service for issues to consider if your ward allows it and you choose that option.

dvan
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Electronid Donatons - Current Status

Postby dvan » Sat Jan 16, 2010 6:08 pm

Alan_Brown wrote:The Church Donations Department is not set up to receive electronic BillPayments for the convenience of members.


Are electronic donations in the development pipeline?

In addition to my own personal convenience, I'm thinking about how much tithing is collectively sitting on desks/dressers/etc. of the members in developed countries, waiting to be hand-delivered to a member of the bishopric. The Church goes to great lengths to make certain that deposits of these funds in local banks are transferred to Salt Lake as soon as possible, but I think e-payments have the potential to speed donations to an even greater extent.

I"m not trying to cause problems, just interested since so many commercial organizations are set to receive electronic payments.

drewy
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Postby drewy » Sun Jan 17, 2010 3:40 am

Sounds like we are pretty lucky in Australia. We have had electronic donations available for around 5 years. The clerk/bishopric do not have to do anything and the donations appear automagically on the monthly repoort.

The bishopric now receive very little money on a sunday. It's a great system.

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Postby jdlessley » Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:09 am

dvan wrote:Are electronic donations in the development pipeline?
What do you mean by this? Electronic donations are now possible and have been for quite some time. Alan_Brown's statement is a result of other discussions on the same topic and the response from Church headquarters that they prefer that electronic donations not be used as a regular or routine method of making donations since they are not set up to process large number of electronic donations. This would create a problem for the Church.
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Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

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Postby RossEvans » Sun Jan 17, 2010 11:12 am

jdlessley wrote:What do you mean by this? Electronic donations are now possible and have been for quite some time. Alan_Brown's statement is a result of other discussions on the same topic and the response from Church headquarters that they prefer that electronic donations not be used as a regular or routine method of making donations since they are not set up to process large number of electronic donations. This would create a problem for the Church.



I think dvan was asking if anyone knows of a project to solve those problems. I don't, but perhaps it is on someone's whiteboard.

dvan
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Electronic Donations - Current Status

Postby dvan » Mon Jan 18, 2010 12:57 am

jdlessley wrote:What do you mean by this? Electronic donations are now possible and have been for quite some time. Alan_Brown's statement is a result of other discussions on the same topic and the response from Church headquarters that they prefer that electronic donations not be used as a regular or routine method of making donations since they are not set up to process large number of electronic donations. This would create a problem for the Church.


I looked into electronic donations some time ago and got copies of the necessary forms, but pulled back from signing up because it all seemed a bit patched together and I had the sense that this method was not being encouraged by the Church.

I know someone who has been doing electronic donations and reports no problems, but I didn't want to push forward if it's not the way that Church headquarters necessarily desires to receive such funds, which is apparently the case.

I do admit some curiosity about why this wouldn't be something that the Church would encourage for the security and cash-flow reasons I mentioned earlier. A wider use of epay would also shorten Sundays in the clerk's office for the financial clerk and a bishop's counselor, leaving them free to rest or undertake other good service that doesn't lend itself to automation.

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Postby russellhltn » Mon Jan 18, 2010 1:22 am

dvan wrote:I do admit some curiosity about why this wouldn't be something that the Church would encourage for the security and cash-flow reasons I mentioned earlier.


It's something decided well above the pay grade of anyone who comes to the forums. I've never heard an explanation, but I do wonder if the cost and/or cost structure of the process has something to do with it.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

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Postby RossEvans » Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:16 am

RussellHltn wrote:It's something decided well above the pay grade of anyone who comes to the forums. I've never heard an explanation, but I do wonder if the cost and/or cost structure of the process has something to do with it.


Assuming that the benefits are well understood, I would guess this is a matter of priorities, because I also would guess these problems are solvable with effort. Many organizations, including the Church, are not constrained by a shortage of good new ideas, but by a shortage of resources or dependence on legacy systems.

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marianomarini
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Postby marianomarini » Mon Jan 18, 2010 10:38 am

As I said somewhere in this forum, in Italy is possible to pay donations electronicaly.
I suppose that they use a software to read the ammount for each fond from field "causale" (I don't know how is it in English, maybe "scope"?) of deposit bill.
Example.
DE 12.5 DI 3.0
This mean: 12,5 of Thithing (DEcima in Italian) and 3.0 of Fast Offering (DIgiuno in Italian).
La vita è una lezione interminabile di umiltà (Anonimo).
Life is a endless lesson of humility (Anonimous).


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