UK society has changed considerably over the last 100 years. One thing that is clear is that people don’t get paid on Friday in cash anymore. People tend to spend money in a paperless fashion only getting cash out of the bank when they need to. I can’t remember the last time I had cash in my pocket at a church service. Passing the plate is no longer an appropriate thing to be doing.
More importantly, people are becoming more willing to offer themselves to God in a variety of different manners. This means that an offering someone makes could comprise of many things – from volunteer work, to charitable giving or a monthly standing order. As part of the worship of the church there should be a way in which someone can offer these things during a worship gathering. How about placing a little bowl of wooden crosses or glass beads so that people can perform the conscious worship act of making offering. That way when it is brought up and the prayers is made it will include everyone in the congregation who is included not just those who throw a pound in every week.
Perhaps then we can encourage and foster a sense of giving within our communities rather than a sense of financial taking.