Online Giving FAQ

What is Online Giving?

Online Giving is a direct payment program whereby your contribution is debited automatically from your checking or credit card account into your church’s bank account.

What are the advantages of Online Giving?

It makes it easy to fulfill stewardship commitments, even when you can’t attend church. You never have to bring cash or checks to church.

Online Giving is safe and secure.  Since implementing St. Gabriel’s Electronic Contributions System in 2008 there has never been any type of invalid illegal access attempt.  Online Giving includes the same security that your bank or credit union uses and will continue to be 100% security standard compliant.

Donating electronically online helps the parish save time and money and allows for more accurate revenue and expense budgeting as well as more accurate end-of-year contribution statements to you.  Online giving offers parishioners with the most accurate data and the least vulnerability.

What forms of payment are accepted?
  • Electronic Checks (eCheck) from your personal checking account.
  • Credit cards (American Express, Discover, Master Card, and VISA)
  • Personal bank Checking Account (eCheck Card), Debit Card, or ATM Card.
How are my contributions automatically deducted from my account?

Once you complete the online registration form, the contribution amount you specify will automatically be transferred from your bank account to the church’s bank account.

When will my contribution be deducted from my account?

Your electronic contribution will be debited on the date you specify on the donation form.

What frequency can I make donations?

Donations can be made on a one-time basis, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, twice per month, quarterly, or annually.

You can also add, modify or delete any scheduled donation from any place with an internet connection or you can contact the church office and ask a staff member to assist you, but only if the staff manages your online giving account.

If I do not write checks, how do I keep my checkbook balance straight?

Since your contribution is made at a pre-established time, you simply record it in your check register on the appropriate date. Electronic contributions are recorded for you on your bank statement as well as your online reports.

When creating your Online Giving account, make sure to use the same email address that the Parish Office have for your family registration.  This is important to accurately record your donations for end of year purposes.  The email will also be used for you to receive an email from each donation when they are made.

Also remember that one donation method used in Online Giving is eCheck.  It is your personal checking account.  This payment method requires you to enter your bank’s routing number and your checking account number.  No screens or reports in ParishSOFT Online Giving ever display your eCheck or credit card information including or Debit / ATM cards

ALL of your tax deductible donations will appear on your end-of-year contribution statement issued by the parish, provided that your total tax-deductible donations to the parish for the year are $100 or more.

Without a canceled check, how can I prove I made my contribution?

Your bank or credit card statements and the Online Giving system both provide reports that document your online giving transactions. Additionally, St. Gabriel’s church management system (ParishSOFTFamily Suite) tracks ALL donations: online as well as donations made using contribution envelopes.  The ParishSOFT Family Suite is used by the parish in generating your annual contributions statement.

Can I put different amounts in offerings and have all of them withdrawn at different times

You can set up to contribute to different offerings at different times; HOWEVER you will have to do each one separately. You will receive a receipt for each one.

What if I change bank accounts?

Login and update your account information.

Is Online Giving risky?

It’s less risky than writing checks or bringing cash to church. Electronic contributions cannot be lost, stolen or destroyed and have an extremely high rate of accuracy.

Is ParishSOFT Online Giving Safe & Secure?

ParishSOFT Online Giving meets the highest banking-level security standards set forth by the Payment Card Industry (PCI) to ensure safe and confidential transactions.

In fact, your banking information is encrypted in the system and is not accessible to any other users or administrators of the ParishSOFT Online Giving  system. When you manage your own account information, your church never needs to handle checks or worry about looking up documents containing your account information. And you’ll always be certain that your gifts are direct-deposited into your parish’s account.

A safe and secure application is always our highest priority in selecting an online contribution system.

Your family’s details in our church management system (ParishSOFT Family Suite) as well as the ParishSOFT Online Giving are not ever stored onsite at St. Gabriel’s.  All systems and data are continually backed up in Michigan and in Toronto.

If you ever perceive any problem or have a question about ParishSOFTOnline Giving do not hesitate to call the church office.

What is the best way to track my donations for my annual tax return?

Most donations made to the Parish are “tax deductible” in accordance with IRS regulations.  Any amounts paid to the parish for which you received a product or service are usually not “tax deductible.”  At St. Gabriel’s some non-tax deductibles might include Religious Education materials, Religious Educations registrations, gown/robe rentals, field trips or merchandise (such as St. Gabriel sweatshirts).

How to insure an accurate end-of-year contribution statement from the parish:

  • Tracking financial data in the parish is extremely important and receives the highest level of security possible. Therefore, the parish staff is constantly evaluating information and vulnerability threats.
  • Use our Online Giving system because you specify your donations, it is not likely that you will experience any inaccuracies on your end-of-year contribution statement.  This donation method is the least vulnerable.
  • Use your St. Gabriel’s Contribution Envelopes.  The contribution envelope supplier sends all appropriate envelopes six times per year.  Each envelope amount is entered into our church management system each week.  If you do not currently receive contribution envelopes and would like to, simply call the church office.  Likewise, if you are using Online Giving and currently receiving contribution envelopes, you may want to discontinue receiving contribution envelopes, simply call the parish office. This donation contribution method is the second least vulnerable.

The St. Gabriel’s donation process is (for all contribution envelopes):

  • Envelopes received or placed in a collection basket or received by US mail, the church staff completes the donation process.
  • The envelopes are opened and funds counted by our Sunday Counters group.
  • If the parishioner did not write the amount of the contribution on the front of the envelope, the counters do.
  • Finally, the Envelope Team inputs the individual donations into the church management system and destroys all envelopes by shredding them.

All of these steps are non-issues when Online Giving is used.

  • The most vulnerable donations in terms of accurate donation tracking is placing loose checks in a collection basket.  The same multi-step process as for envelopes is used, but the Counters must first complete a special “loose check sheet” detailing the parishioner name, the donation fund (Sunday Offering, Haiti, Debt Reduction and any other second / special collection), and the amount of the donation.
What if I try Online Giving and don’t like it?

You are free to cancel your authorized donations at any time. Just login and cancel your authorization by deleting your accounts and donation dates.

Or if you need help, just call the church office at (508) 603-1430.

How do I sign up for Online Giving?

Complete the online registration form and select the donations and the amount you would like to donate along with your credit or debit card information. It’s that easy! Click here to start.

For those who would like to have a staff member from the parish office set up the online giving for them, please print and fill in the Online Giving Authorization Form.  Please call the Parish Office at (508) 603-1430 to arrange an appointment with a staff member to set up your account.

Please call the Parish Office if you have additional questions at (508) 603-1430.

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