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Home > Research Library > The Business of Giving > Accepting Gifts > Pledges

Pledges

Many churches ask their members to sign pledge cards not only to encourage generosity but also to plan the churchís annual budget. Some church leaders argue that making a promise to give in the future will hold people accountable in their giving. Meanwhile, others believe the pledge system removes spontaneity from Christian giving. The following articles and papers highlight various views on the use of pledge cards in churches today.


Articles and Papers

Pledge Cards: Pilot Program Starts in Los Angeles Church
Worldwide News. September 17, 1996.
A congregation of the Worldwide Church of God, as an effort to stimulate stewardship responsibility to God in its members, adopted a pledge card system. In this brief write-up of the events occurring through this change, several church members highlight some of the advantages they saw in using pledge cards.

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Promise Trackers: How to Ease the Task of Recording Pledges and Contributions
Nick B. Nicholau. Your Church, January/February 2001.
Contributions are the financial lifeblood of a church. So a major duty of pastors and church business managers is to look for ways to help people increase financial stewardship without alienating them. Some churches help their people make financial commitments by asking them to pledge what they'll give to a building campaign, missionary causes, or even to ongoing ministry expenses. To account for pledges and contributions as well as help to project cash flow, many churches have found church-management software useful. Today, relatively few churches track pledges for annual giving. However, some churches ask members to complete annual pledge cards to help determine their operating budget. In addition to exploring the advantages and disadvantages of using such software, this article reviews common objections to tracking pledges.

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