Friday, February 23, 2024

Church of England rolls out contactless donation machines across Lancashire

Key Links — St George's Preston

Churches across Lancashire are welcoming new digital technology that allows parishoners to donate in a 21st century way.

It means that instead of digging around in your pocket or purse for the collection, giving is now as easy as tapping a payment card.

In the new scheme, managed locally by Church of England Diocesan Stewardship Resourcing Officers Stephanie Rankin and Christy Sawyer, the contactless giving devices have been snapped up at a discounted rate by 60 parishes.

It's hoped that it will drive up much-needed donations to the Church of England.

"Rush of applications"

“The contactless scheme was advertised to incumbents, treasurers, churchwardens, church council Secretaries, Lay Ministers and many others in our parishes during October and November last year; resulting in a rush of applications," said Stephanie.

“An assortment of devices were available and, based on the allocation made by the National Church, 38 of our churches have received the more portable 'CollecTin More' devices; 19 got the larger 'Payaz Giving Stations' and three which met different criteria received GWD contactless donation stations.”

This rollout in Blackburn Diocese is part of the National Church’s investment into giving over the last few years which has enabled all dioceses to provide a number of devices heavily subsidised by the Church Commissioners.

Stephanie and Christy worked with parishes to encourage them to apply and prepare them to receive their devices. 

Earlier this week dozens of parish representatives came to the Diocesan Offices on the edge of Blackburn over two days to pick up their new devices and to be shown how to set up and use them.

Christy said: “The thinking behind this major push on giving in a modern way is simple. Though regular giving is crucial for supporting the ministry in our parishes, we also need to enable those who are not part of planned giving schemes to give to support local ministry and mission. As fewer people now carry cash, contactless giving provides a convenient method for people to make donations and more churches will now have access to this technology."