Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Jesus Wants Your PIN. (Part II)

Jesus Wants Your PIN. :

    I have to admit, I find it somewhat flattering that a celebrity preacher would go through all the fuss of creating an AOL Journal so as to address my concerns regarding the use of "tithing kiosks."

    Anyway, Mr. Baker, the problem I have is best stated in the Times article here:

The Bakers charge between $2,000 and $5,000 for the kiosks, which come in a variety of configurations. They also collect a monthly subscription fee of up to $49.95 for licensing and support. And a card-processing company gets 1.9% of each transaction; a small cut of that fee goes to SecureGive.
    I find this to be somewhat interesting in that these machines not only give to the church, but they also give to you.  In short, you are using Christian charity for your own personal gain. 

    Now, in your journal, you come close to answering this concern, yet you skirt the issue by saying:
On the first glance, an ATM for Jesus seems to be a way of "ill-gotten" gain, but it's not.  The giving kiosks at Stevens Creek Church is a simple way that our members serve Christ and His Church.  Giving must be a heart issue.  It's not about the machine ... it's about what God can do through ordinary people like you and me.
    Wrong.  It IS most certainly about the machines, and has very little to do with God.  When someone gives to the church from the heart, shouldn't 100% of that "gift" given in Jesus' name go TO the church?  Are your parishioners aware that a percentage of the money they are giving to the church is being funneled directly into your pockets and the pockets of those charging a processing fee? 


  1. This is awful...  Stuff like this makes me fume!!  I wonder what the ATM's look like.  I'm afraid to actually..  Is there a picture of Jesus with dollar bills in his hand or what?  I don't trust "celebrity preachers."  They are too wealthy..  Jesus walked among the poor--he didn't drive a Lexus SUV.  Julie

  2. I'm walking into this midstream so I dont have all the facts but for one, I dont beleive in churches that have ATM machines inside. I believe at a sub sonccious level it makes light of what a church organization is supposed to be about...It even bugs me when people pray to God to want a monetary blessing...outside of our basic needs, God isnt all about money...BUT...Kiosks are spendy..my ex has about 100 of them in his ATM business and the price is reasonable...if the organization whose selling these is profiting, I dont have a problem with that...thats business..everyone from the banks down the line profit and lots of folks from different beleifs work in corporations..
    .as far as giving back to God, heck how many marketing ads do we see through out the year where if you charge on your Mastercard and etc., they will donate a percent to Breast Cancer, or research of some kind...SO, if someone wants to use a Kiosk which donates a portion to the church so be it...outside of the few wealthy preachers living high off the hog(which I disagree with)...there is still good things that churches do...giving to the poor, homeless and abroad..I see it all day long at the shelters or in third world nations.....So, not sure what the problem is here..I will go back and read the article and see what the controversy is....

  3. I doubt that they realize where the money goes at all... sad.

    be well,

  4. There is something about the evil genius of it all that I somewhat admire...I'm suprised the catholics didn't come up with it first, too busy covering up other things to be innovative I guess.

    However when you need money at 3am for whatever depraved activity demands cash at that hour, you might think twice about the debauchery if the son of God was looking at you. Maybe you should give to the church instead of going to the nudie bar.

    Just my thoughts, random as they can be...
    If anything "Jesus ATM" is an awesome Halloween costume idea.

    Happy Trick or Treating!!!

  5. Securegive.com talks about how the company was founded by pastor Mark but never mentions where those profits go. The website also targets all "non-profits," not just churches (they mention hospitals and alma maters). It's a pretty slick little site:

    "With ministry-related payments and charitable giving on the rise, and as many as half of American adults carrying a credit or debit card, can you afford not to offer credit and debit card donation options to your members and contributors?" There you go, pastor Mark--put the fear into those plate passing dinosaurs.

    My biggest gripe with all this ATM Debit card use is that no one carries cash any longer and the fine art of the pickpocket is falling by the wayside. Doggone it. How am I gonna learn my boy a trade now?

  6. Ok, it is late over here, & I am only getting loser 25 year old trick or treaters. You don't suppose that Jesus ATM takes king size Snickers do you? ~Mary

  7. I got two emails from Mr. Baker this morning...did anyone else have the pleasure?