Giving Tips for Churches Amidst COVID-19

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.” 

 —Peter Drucker, Father of Management Thinking

The Christian stewards who love your church or ministry want to know that you are OK because they want you to continue to do what you do. They want to know how they can help. Take heart that during times of crisis, all of us evaluate our priorities and do all that we can for those ministries that are top of the list. Most importantly, God was not surprised by this coronavirus—and He is not intimidated by it!

America has a deep, solid FOOTING in philanthropy. Philanthropy is philo—love of the brotherly kind, and Anthropos—mankind. Philanthropists are “lovers of mankind.” Who should be better at this than followers of Jesus?

Biblical principles of stewardship are our FOUNDATION. All resources flow from God who created them. God has entrusted His resources to stewards who have management control. Christian stewards use God’s resources to provide for themselves, their dependents, and others who they can help—and do it in ways that bring glory to God.

Time-proven development/fundraising strategies and tools make up our FRAMEWORK. Just a few elements of a lasting framework are:

1. Clear, concise, and compelling communication—Consider this outline:

  • The mission is still relevant (before, during, and after COVID-19)
  • How we do the mission is different—but not less life-impacting (operations, programs, outreach—all different but still vital and still ongoing)
  • Your involvement is still vital
    • Pray—specifically and often
    • Promote—volunteer (as possible), encourage, invite, lend your credibility
    • Provide—as you are able (same, reduced, increased) continue to invest/give

2. Effective methods of communication delivery

  • Print—anything that can be read (multiple media)
  • Public—limited now to virtual gatherings
  • Personal—face-to-face (highly limited), letters, notes, texts, emails, phone calls, video calls

3. Target communication (as best you can) to your primary recipient segments

  • Print—to all audience segments
  • Public—to all audience segments and to sub-segments (as possible with targeted messaging)
  • Personal—to key segments of those most highly invested (via time, talent, and treasure)

4. Best practices of communicating opportunities to invest (give) to the work

  • First ask, “Are you OK?” (Be sensitive to the impact of the crisis on their personal finances.)
  • Then, if appropriate, lay out the opportunity and costs, make further information available to those with specific questions, then make sure it is easy to respond with a gift (online, text, mail, drop box, pickup).

Watch for further practical strategies and tools from CDF Capital Foundation.