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Jesus never took up an offering, do you think churches would fare better to leave the plate in one place for tithes rather than pass it around for everyone to observe?

I have always thought charitable giving should be done anonymously, but passing a public plate kinda makes it obvious to everyone around the church who is giving what, or givingat all, especially when it comes to cash.


Asked by jewjewbee at 7:54 AM on Aug. 27, 2010 in Religious Debate

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Answers (18)
  • There are principles that help with this issue.
    1- Let each one do just as he has resolved in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor 9:7)
    2- You received free, give free (Matt 10:8)
    3-Hence when you go making gifts of mercy, do not blow a trumpet ahead of you, just as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be glorified by men. Truly I say to YOU, They are having their reward in full. But you, when making gifts of mercy, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, that your gifts of mercy may be in secret; then your Father who is looking on in secret will repay you.(Matt 6:2-4)
    4- On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income. (1 Corinthians 16:2)
    To be continued...)

    Answer by 69humblepie at 9:28 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • A huge 'Amen,' sister!! I wonder where 'passing the plate' everr started. It sure wasn't by our Lord! You got it right, sister. But even with having to go forward and placing whatever gift one is giving into the box, everyone sees who gives and who doesn't, or who CAN give, and who CANNOT, which brings it down to public display and gives opportunity for those present to entertain thoughts that may not be true at all regarding those who do not give for thier own personal reasons. Jesus would never have us judge others regarding giving, or anythhg else! We are to judge ourselves and we won't be judged. Passing the plate has become a 'who's who' in the churches to a great degree. It's a very personal issue between the Lord and the givers, or the none-givers, not for anyone else to judge. The Lord knows the hearts, looks upon the hearts of His own and is not a hard task Master!

    IWriting a check infront of others is wrong!

    Answer by Smiles4U430 at 8:29 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • AT our church there is a white box with a lock on it that sits in the hallway where offerings and prayer request cards ect are put into. I like it that way - no one passing the plate and watching. There are a select few people who take turns doing the counting every week - and yes they keep track of what from who for tax reasons - but the pastor is not given that info. IT's all private.

    Answer by mommymeg03 at 9:15 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • (continued...) At my spiritual home, our voluntary donation boxes are located discreetly in the back of the auditorium area and in the lobby. Whoever wishes to make a contribution may do so based on their ability and desire. There is never anything passed around. I remember going to church with my mom’s aunt as a child. I the plate came to me and since I didn’t have anything to put in, I passed it to the next person. My aunt frowned at me and whispered “put something in!” I was completely embarrassed. She ended up giving me some change to put in. But the point is it was not her business nor place to do that. I’ve heard of some local churches that check W2 forms. Why? Is that even legal?

    Answer by 69humblepie at 9:29 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • We dont pass a plate around. We have three boxes placed in front. two for tithe and one for building fund. We DO not hype tithing but we do let people know its there especially if their are new people. Other than that we teach that tithe is an act of worship. People go up anytime during worship or after service and place it in there.
    It like it this way it is less invasive too!

    Answer by Shaneagle777 at 11:37 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • passing it around does make you feel some pressure to add something or look like a jerk.

    Answer by Zoeyis at 7:57 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • in uganda, they put the plate up in the front and everyone would watch as someone walked up there to add to it... with the plate going around, you can add the money discreetly. but, i never feel pressured to add to the plate.

    Answer by gracefulsky at 8:02 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • I'm not sure. At the church I grew up in, every person would have their own set of envelopes to put in the basket and the envelopes had a number on them which was assigned to you so even if you put cash in the envelope they would still know who it was coming from. Then at the end of each year, the church would send a letter to everyone letting you know exactly how much you contributed since they could tell by your number. Right after I was confirmed I wasn't working yet but I still had a set of envelopes since I was technically a full member. So at the end of the year I got a letter saying I hadn't given anything and a whole schpiel about how I should be donating to the church and blah blah blah. It was kind of frustrating because I really didn't have any money to give.

    Sorry that got a little off track, but for me the church would still know where the money is coming from so to me it wouldn't really make a difference.

    Answer by cjsjellybean at 8:45 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • Our church doesn't pass it ... there is a box at the back of the church where people can tithe on their own.

    Answer by Gal51 at 9:17 AM on Aug. 27, 2010

  • I think the offering plate was designed to guilt people into giving, or giving more. Why else would you pass around a public plate? Boxes are much more convenient for everyone. I think it's important for people to financially support their places of worship, if they are able to afford it. I don't think they should be bullied into it by being publicly humiliated if they cannot.

    Answer by Scuba at 10:24 AM on Aug. 27, 2010