I sat with the Executive Meeting of one of my churches last night and said that we had to do something about finances. (Again - this isn't new, but the problem isn't going away.) I proposed a fund-raising scheme and they were keen and I put pressure on them to set the example in giving to this.
But some of them really, really don't have the money. The census data for 2011 shows that this part of Mitchell's Plain has a monthly average income per household of R5000. That should mean that we receive an average tithe of R500 per member (or member-household). I just don't see that happening! Partly because we don't have every member of the household coming to church and partly because I think we have the lower part of the income structure in our congregation.
But I can't tighten the screws on them like this.
And they will insist on making a donation to the church district mission fund because the circuit tightens the screws on them.
So we are falling behind every month. Plus extra requirements.
But I feel like the Pharisees demanding the widow's mite - even if she gave it freely. The worst is, we are not the poorest circuit or society. How is the church ever going to make an impact in South Africa like this? We need a new model.