A church in Augusta, Ga., has reportedly begun using ATMs as a way for its parishioners to tithe. The effort, says Pastor Marty Baker of Stevens Creek Community Church, is simply a way to adapt to a credit-card-happy society in which plastic is overtaking paper as a form of payment. Proponents of the "Giving Kiosks" say such a use of technology is a way to boost donations using modern tools while adjusting to an age when churchgoers are more likely to have credit and debit cards in their pockets than cash.
Those who aren't thrilled about the idea worry that it promotes debt, even as faiths urge against spending beyond means. And the idea of using such technology at a place of worship strikes some as insensitive and out of context.
What do you think? Think you'd ever purchase one for your congregation?
As the much-beloved hymn says, "the times they are a-changin.'" OK, I'm kidding. Those words are not a hymn, but a song by Bob Dylan. But the point is on target: the times are always changing. Some of us of a certain age have trouble with computers; we are "cyber-challenged," the phrase goes.