The single biggest question related to this topic has always been “Should the Pastor know much people give?”
I’m not really here to answer this one way or the other.
That being said, I submit we are asking the wrong question. The question should be, “What should the Pastor know about giving in his church?“
7 Things The Pastor Should Know About Giving
1. When someone has given to the ministry for the first time. It’s not really important that he knows the amount, just that someone chose to give. A personal note from the pastor to the person who gave goes a long way. Always thank those who gave for the first time.
2. When someone stops giving to the ministry. This is a ministry or shepherding opportunity. Did they lose a job, is there a serious health issue going on or some other family crisis? Sometimes you’ll find that they are simply upset about something inside the church. Either way, this is an opportunity to minister and to clear up any unresolved concerns they may have.
3. When someone has significantly decreased their giving to the church. Again, it’s a ministry opportunity.
4. When someone has significantly increased their giving to the church. This could also include large one-time gifts. Use this as an opportunity to thank them as appropriate.
In 1-4, the pastor needs names. Whether he needs to know amounts is up to him and church leadership.
5. Pastor needs to know whether or not his staff is tithing. He will definitely need to know the amounts in this case. How can you challenge the church to tithe when your staff is not leading the way? Now, I’m not saying beat them over the head or fire them if they’re not tithing, but minister to them. Find out what is going on in their lives. If they are being willfully disobedient, then that’s another matter.
6. Pastor needs to know whether or not those being considered for a leadership position are giving consistently/generously. Whether he knows the amount or not is up to him, but he needs to know they’re supporting the Lord’s work with their finances. Someone is going to have to look at that person’s giving record to make a determination. See this post on my thoughts on Evaluating a Candidate for Leadership.
7. Pastor needs to know who his Financial Leaders are. These people are being obedient to God’s Word and have bought into the vision of the church. Pastor wants to make sure these people are in a Small Group and involved in a Ministry. Often, financial leaders want to serve and they make great ministry leaders, they just need someone to ask. Finally, he needs to know and develop relationships with those who have the gift of giving. They really do want to know how they can help.
There’s one more thing Pastor needs to know about his church giving and it’s what I call the Church Giving Profile.