Online Giving Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the benefit of Online Giving?
Online giving will simplify your contributions by allowing you to set up contributions ahead of time and by decreasing the number of checks you write to Pender. These days, most people appreciate the ability to make a financial contribution even when they're not able to give in person. Many people also appreciate the ability to plan their giving and set it up so that they don’t have to think about it every Sunday as they are running out the door to attend worship service. This option also helps the church by ensuring consistent donations throughout the year, particularly in the usually lower-attended summer months.
Q: How do I start?
Click on 'GIVE NOW' at the bottom of this page, or on the home page, and you will be taken to a log in screen. If you have not done so before, you will need to set up an account. The process is simple, just follow the prompts. When asked for email address, use the same one that Pender has in its database. Don’t know the address we have? Use the same email address that receives mass emails from Pender.
Q: Are there other benifits to setting up an account?
Yes! Once you set up an account, you will be able to view your complete giving history for the current and past years, view your pledge information for the current year, access your own Pender profile (name, address, email address, etc.), send a request to the church office to change any of that information and access an online directory of other Pender people. The account is useful for these other reasons even if you don't use it for online giving.
Q: Will I be able to use credit cards?
No, not at this time. Pender's Online Giving is being done by a direct debit to a bank account - using ACH - Automated Clearing House. This is for 2 reasons; credit cards charge higher fees than ACH; and we are reluctant to ask our congregation to potentially incur debt.
Q: What financial information will be used?
You will be asked to enter your bank account's routing and account numbers which can be found across the bottom of your checks.
Q: Is my financial information secure?
Absolutely! We have partnered with ServiceU an internet payment processor, similar to Pay Pal. Your banking information does not go through our data base - it is gathered, stored and processed at ServiceU. In an attempt to combat the increase in online payment fraud, major credit cards & financial institutions have jointly published standards for securing data. To achieve compliance, service providers must adhere to stringent requirements and go through rigorous audits. Because ServiceU exceeds these stringent requirements, you can be sure your data is secure.
Q: How long will it take for the funds to be withdrawn from my checking account?
It usually takes 3 - 4 business days from the date you specify.
Q: Can I try out the Online Giving service by giving one time?
Yes. You may try Online Giving at any time for one time only or you can set up a recurring donation schedule.
Q: Do I have to go to the web site each time I want to contribute?
You can go to the web site each and every time you want to make a contribution. But an easier way is to set up a recurring payment schedule. Just click the “Recurring” box, and then choose the frequency you want: weekly, every 2 weeks, monthly, or every 3 months. You can choose the number of payments or give an ending date for a specific recurring contribution amount.
Q: Can I change a recurring gift once I sign up for one?
Yes. You are completely in control of your giving. You can delete a scheduled contribution, or you can change it. The best way to change a recurring gift is to delete it and re-enter it as a new contribution. On the 'Scheduled Giving Summary' page, there is a red circle with a white minus sign beside the scheduled contribution. Click on it to deactivate that gift.
Q: Can I give to multiple funds?
Yes. Online donations can be made to most of the funds we have, including Unified Budget, Faith Promise, Church Mortgage Reduction, Altar Fund, etc. You will select the fund from a drop down menu. If you don't see the fund you want, give to Miscellaneous Offering and type the description into the optional memo box.
Q: How can I keep a record of the amount I have contributed?
Your complete giving summary - both online and in the offering plate - for the current and previous year are shown in the "My Giving History" section of your account once you create the account. Also, your bank statement and will include an itemized list of automatic gifts given from your account.
Q: Why don't all my online contributions show up in 'My Giving History'?
All contributions will show up on the statement once they are posted to your account by the Financial Secretary. This normally occurs weekly after the Sunday's offerings are posted.
Q: How do I participate in the offering during the worship service if I give online?
If you wish, you can use your envelope or one of the pew envelopes and mark on it “I Gave Online” & place it in the offering plate.
Q: How do I update my information?
If you’ve moved, changed your phone number or e-mail address, you can update your record by clicking “My Complete Profile” and then clicking on the pencil icon or the “edit” button. This will create a change request that will be reviewed by the office. Once the change is approved, the database will be updated.
Q: Is my contact information freely available on the Internet? Will I be found by someone doing a "Google" search?
No, your information is very secure and only available to other church attendees who have logged in & created an account.
Q: Won’t this open me up to spam?
No. Since your data is only available to the people of the church, spammers will not be able to access your information.
Q: What information can other church attendees see about me?
By default, church attendees can see your name, your home address, phone number and email address (i.e. any information published in the printed directory).
Q: Can I limit what information is shown?
Absolutely! By logging on and then clicking “My Profile > My Personal Preferences” you can select exactly what you are sharing with other church attendees.
Q: Is my giving history private?
Definitely. Only you can see your giving history and only when you have logged in. The server is tested daily to make sure that it is safe from hackers and is protected by 128-bit encryption.
Q: How often is the information refreshed?
We update the information at least once a week , after the Financial Secretary posts all contributions from the previous Sunday.
Q: Why don’t my contributions look right in My Giving History?
Contributions from Sunday are typically available online by Tuesday of any given week. If you are missing recent gifts, they most likely have not posted yet. If you have other questions, please call at 703-278-8023 and ask to speak to Eva Caldrone.
Q: Who do I talk to if I have more questions?
You can call the church office at (703) 278-8023 and ask to speak with Debbie McKamey or Eva Caldrone. Or you can email them by clicking on their names: Debbie or Eva