Summer for many churches is a time when youth and children’s ministry hits the gas pedal and adult ministry eases up to a slower pace. People take vacations. Since school is out for a few weeks, the pace of life slows down just a little. This affects churches in many different ways.
The weeks between the school year can also be a scary time when it comes to church funding. As peoples’ participation habits change, few have the discipline of giving when they are not present in Worship. There was a day when you might expect church members to mail in their offering or drop it by the church office if they knew they wouldn’t be in town, but those days are over.
From a budgeting standpoint, summer is problematic in that giving typically slumps while expenses soar for things like church camp and Vacation Bible School. This can be a double-blow to the church budget and create a crisis, if left unattended.
So what can you do to prepare for the summer slump? Here are five suggestions:
- Incur expenses for summer activities before giving drops off, which is usually mid to late June.
- Promote the use of electronic communication to stay connected when not present.
- Offer online event registration for events so people can sign up even if they aren’t present due to traveling or changes in personal schedules.
- Highlight online giving, especially reoccurring gifts via credit/debit cards and bank drafts (ACH transactions), to keep giving consistent whether or not the member is present.
- Encourage the pastor to record a short weekly video to share stories of impact and life change and to remind members that ministry takes place even when they are not present.
How does your church prepare for summer giving?