For 22 years, Francina Bland has been an enthusiastic member of Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral in Austell, Georgia. She’s seen a lot of change in that time. And the past seven years have been especially meaningful as she stepped into the position of Financial Administrator. She found herself on the front line of serving her church family. In her role, Francina educates callers with questions and concerns about online giving, even as she extends a personal touch that communicates the church’s commitment to “family.”
Growing the Family
In 1991, the congregation started by Bishop Dale C. Bronner shared space with another church. After outgrowing meeting spaces, again and again, it finally moved into its own 4000-plus cathedral in 2004. Today, the church’s membership is approximately 10,000 with another 1,500+ online “family members” tuning in and giving weekly from around the globe.
Changing Technology, Reaping Benefits
A year into joining the church staff, ACS Technologies introduced solutions to the congregation’s pressing need for secure and versatile online giving. Her role shifted with the changing technology. “It became my job to ask the question, ‘How can I make you feel more comfortable?’” But before long, Francina says it became clear that eGiving would be an instrument of blessing that extended the “family” care bishop Bonner had envisioned from the beginning.
Among her top picks of the benefits of eGiving is the automation of giving that reduces the workload and frees her up to learn new tools and useful skills for the job. For new and wary online givers, Francina is only too happy to discuss the biblical basis for tithing, as well as to explain the secure nature of eGiving, which is available 24/7 and allows givers to easily check their giving history and download statements. She’s also quick to mention the benefit of no longer “passing the basket” on Sundays, which many felt disrupted the flow of worship.
Answering Questions, Making Connections
If you really want to see Francina light up, just ask her how this seemingly “impersonal” solution actually presents daily opportunities for ministry.
“I receive lots of calls, people want to talk about what’s on their hearts. Sometimes that means they have questions about the whys and how of “sowing” into this church. Other times people are just lonely and want to share a need or let us pray for them. Then there are many who want to talk about how this church has changed their lives.” – Francina Bland, Financial Administrator
One particular story stands out to her to this day. “I stopped hearing from an online viewer that called like clockwork,” Francina shares. “I knew his son had been very ill.” Francina says. She didn’t call the man right away, she waited for the Lord’s leading. A week later, she phoned the man who shared that he had buried his son the prior week. A human connection made through the church’s online giving feature became the door to encouragement and healing.
At Word of Faith Family Worship Cathedral, online giving is opening conversations that honor God while informing and uplifting people. Quite unexpectedly, this technical solution is one more way this large church body nurtures its family in changing times.
To find out more about Word of Faith Family Cathedral, please visit here.
To find out more about Online Giving with Realm, please visit here.