Frequently Asked Questions
Can contributions be directed to specific funds within the church?
Yes. We have several specific funds set up in the system. Some examples include: Operating Fund, Missions, and Capital Improvement. You can specify exactly how much money you want to donate to each fund, and you can change those selections at any time.
May I give with my credit card?
Yes! Many people enjoy earning rewards points for donations made with their debit or credit cards. However, please be aware that St. Lorenz is charged a transaction fee (typically about 3%) for debit and credit card donations. Perhaps you can consider checking the “Help offset the processing fee” when giving with a credit or debit card to help cover these charges.
From what types of bank accounts may I give?
You may have funds transferred from checking or savings accounts. Once you authorize the transfer, your specified contribution is electronically transferred from the designated account to St. Lorenz Church’s bank account.
Who do I talk to if I have more questions about SimplyGiving®?
SimplyGiving® is administered by Vanco Services, LLC, an outside vendor that Thrivent Financial for Lutherans has contracted with to provide administrative services. Feel free to call Leah Ebmeyer, the church office manager, at (989) 652-0769 or email her at email@example.com with any questions.
If I don’t have a canceled check, how can I prove I made my contribution?
St. Lorenz will include your automatic gifts on your contribution statements for tax purposes. Also, your bank statement gives you a list of electronic transfers.
Is anyone else using SimplyGiving®?
Yes. Hundreds of churches, schools, and non-profit organizations utilize SimplyGiving® for their online donations.
Do you have to be a member of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans to participate in the Simply Giving® program?
No. This program is available to anyone who wishes to make a donation to St. Lorenz Lutheran Church.
Are there any fees involved with the program?
There are no fees charged to individuals making donations. For savings and checking account donations, St. Lorenz pays a small transaction fee. However, St. Lorenz gets charged an additional transaction fee (typically about 3%) for debit and credit card donations. Debit and credit card donations are welcome and many people enjoy earning rewards points on their credit cards when donating in this way. Perhaps you can consider checking the “Help offset the processing fee” when giving with a credit or debit card to help cover these charges.
May I change my information or account, make a temporary stop payment, or change the amount that is being withdrawn from my account?
Yes. You can suspend, change, or stop withdrawals any time you like. You simply log in to the website and make the changes yourself. Any changes you make are effective immediately.
I like to place my offering in the collection plate as an act of worship. Doesn’t Simply Giving® prevent me from doing this?
You may always give during a worship service even if you are participating in SimplyGiving®. Also in the near future, your weekly envelope will have a box to check “I give electronically.” Until then you may simply write this wording on your envelope.
What if I try Simply Giving® and then decide to cancel?
You can cancel your authorization at any time by simply logging in to the website and discontinuing your donations. Any cancellations take place immediately.
How does the SimplyGiving® program work?
Your offerings are transferred electronically from your bank or credit union account. They are deposited directly into the St. Lorenz Church account. As a result, your contributions cannot be lost, stolen, forgotten or mis-counted.
If I do not write checks, how will I keep my checkbook balance straight?
Since your contribution is made on a pre-established date each month, you simply record it in your check register on the appropriate date. All contributions will be clearly listed on the monthly checking or savings account statement you receive from your financial institution.
How often can funds be withdrawn electronically from my account?
As often as you like. Typically, donors give weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly. However, the frequency of your donations is completely up to you. Additionally, with the SimplyGiving program, you can log in to the website at any time to change your donation amounts or frequency of donations, make special one-time donations, or stop your donations altogether. With SimplyGiving online, you are in complete control. If the donation date falls on a weekend or holiday, the funds will be withdrawn on the next business day.