First United Methodist Church
Thursday, July 25, 2024

Electronic Giving

It has been said that 75 years ago, 95% of church offerings were received in cash and only 5% of the offerings were received by check. Today, society is going through another financial transition as more and more people handle their finances electronically. Some estimates indicate the 60% of the people in the U.S. (and the percentage has been growing every year) handle at least part of their financial lives through electronic transactions (i.e. paychecks deposited electronically into their bank account or paying utility, mortgage, car, insurance or monthly bills) on-line through electronic fund transfer (EFT) or through their bank’s website. 

Electronic Giving Options at First UMC
What is “Electronic Giving” and how will this service be provided?
First United Methodist Church is now offering “electronic giving.” This gives our parishioners two other options: paying through your own banks “Bill Pay” feature or paying via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) instead of the traditional envelope system. 
You can give to the church “electronically” through your own bank’s “Bill Pay” feature:
Here’s how to get started with “Bill Pay”:
1. Log onto your bank’s web site and into your account through your computer or mobile device. All the data you send and receive is encrypted so you can be assured of protecting all of your information..
2. Set up your payee. To set up the church as a payee, you’ll need our name and address (First United Methodist Church, 1915 Nebraska St., Sioux City, IA 51104) and your account number.
3. Schedule your payment. Tell your bank the amount you want to pay, and when you want the money to be taken out of your account.
4. Your payment is sent. Your bank deducts the money from your account and sends it to the church, exactly as you instructed. If you choose, your bank will send you an email confirming that the payment has been sent.
You can give to the church through an Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT):
You (the parishioner) authorizes the church to receive funds directly from your bank account. You decide the frequency (weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly) and the dollar amount to be transferred. First United Methodist Church has entered into an agreement with Security National Bank, Sioux City, to provide the EFT giving services.
Please note: This same process (EFT) is used by the Social Security Administration to send payments to social security recipients.
Do I have to participate in Electronic Giving?
No, you do not. You can still give through a check or cash. We are offering “Bill Pay” or EFT as another option that people can use in supporting God’s work through First UMC.
What is the cost to the parishioner?
There is no cost to you; however, your bank may charge a fee for insufficient funds should this occur.
Will the parishioner still receive a statement of contributions?
Yes, quarterly statements will continue be processed and mailed as they are now.
I have decided to become part of the “Electronic Funds Transfer” (EFT) program. How will I know when my donations will start being transferred to the church?
It may take up to two weeks for us to process an “Authorization Form”. Once this is done, there is a lag time of two business days before a transaction can occur.
            We will send you a notification when to expect the transfers to begin.
Not all church funds are included on the “Authorization Form” (such as Missions), may parishioners still give to these?
If a fund is not set up electronically, please continue to contribute via check or cash.
How do parishioners sign up for “Electronic Funds Transfer”?
The Authorization Forms for Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) are located on the table in the church office and also by clicking on "Click to Begin" logo at the top of this page. Either mail in the completed form, put it in the offering plate, or drop it in the designated box in the church office. 
Please note: The Financial Secretary will continue to ensure confidentiality of each parishioner’s information.
How does a parishioner discontinue EFT or make a change?
The same Authorization Forms in which you sign up are used to make changes or to discontinue Electronic Fund Transfers. Once again, remember that it may take up to two weeks to make the change, and notification will be sent.
What if I have more questions? Please call our Financial Secretary, Mary Vondrak, at (712) 258-0119.