Pastor's Corner June 10 2018

The correct answer to last week's skill-testing question is $19.15. Congratulations to R&D for the highest couple score!

I apologize in advance; I was warned but didn't listen. I am falling into the 'donation method' quagmire all the way to rock bottom. Important points to underscore: 1) The parish has no preference on your donation method, 2) Please use whatever method is more convenient for you, 3) All methods have costs associated with them—which is okay, 4) One method's cost may be more than off-set by other factors.

Cost offsets: Some have asked, for instance, why we send the donation envelops monthly and not annually. The answer is simple: studies have proven the monthly package serves as a reminder and therefore elicits higher total donations. This higher total more than off-sets the postage. Wouldn't it be better to lower the postage costs? Yes, when we all become angels, no more reminders will be necessary.

Are we promoting online giving? Yes, only in this sense: we have it, its new, its easy, its flexible, its safe and there are some interesting advantages for both of us. From the parish's perspective, a friend of the parish can send a donation just as easily from across the country as from across town.

Key: Having consistency without losing flexibility is key. For those who use a method which is consistent and flexible, please keep doing what you are doing. For those who desire greater consistency, online giving may be right for you. If you try, you may like it. Go to stjosephrichmond.org and click DONATE, then click WeShare and investigate freely.

Costs: What are the costs involved in all the methods of giving? Our current negotiated fees:

1. Cash: Manual labor for counting, depositing, and recording. (Bank fees exist for high volume deposits, typically we are not close to this threshold.)

2. Credit: 3.5% plus $0.15 per transaction.

3. ACH: 1%, plus $.15 per transaction.

4. Check and/or Bill Pay: some manual labor. (Bank fees: $0.50 each, after 500 per month—typically we only reach this threshold at Easter.)

5. Offertory envelopes: about $1 per family per month.

The parish spent a total of $620 last month gathering and processing $37,500 in donations. The processing cost is, therefore, less than 2%. What do we get for that fee? A lot—none of the gifts were lost, stolen, embezzled, or misattributed. Deo Gratias! Whew. Thank you for your tremendous patience. I sincerely hope that I never have to talk about these things again.

ACS-VANCO: How do I cancel my account with ACS? A reminder that the ACS-VANCO online giving vehicle—still available on the website—will be deactivated after June 30th. Please stop all recurring donations and delete payment information. The parish's account will shut down when the last transaction is processed.

Parking Lot: We are still actively investigating solutions and getting bids in preparation for a paving project in the fall this year. Since we want to do it right, we're looking at solutions to several problems (i.e. drainage, electricity) at the same time. In the meantime, please use caution when traversing the rough patches in the lot.

Please pray for a fruitful retreat and safe return, as I am on retreat this week in sunny Nebraska.

May God reward your generosity.

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