Facebook, Twitter, and blogging have led a new generation of humanity to find a new, digital way of embracing community: transparency. And now, Barack Obama has said that this transparency will spread to the government, with the creation of will be a site that will allow people to view how government from Obama's stimulus plan money is being spent. You can see the announcement here. So here's the question: is your church willing to be this transparent? Could your church have its budget listed on it's website? Would you church leaders have the courage to use a site like to track it's spending - and then make each and every penny available to be seen by it's members? One of the most shocking things to me in my church life was when I learned that our pastor had to go without a paycheck for a few weeks because our giving was below the budget we had planned. I learned this a year or more after the fact; it hurt me, because if I had known, I wonder if I would have been able to eat out one less meal and give a few more dollars above my regular tithe. Would your church benefit from being transparent? Would your community see the struggle of planning a church budget, and realize how important their contributions are? Or would the community rebel against the budget, and decide that the pastor doesn't need an assistant or such an extensive book collection? As we continue to allow technology interface with our transparency, can the church be a leading example of how to communicate and work through the needs of the questionable economic climate? Please discuss: what technologies could churches use to help make their budget more transparent, without giving away access to any confidential information (salaries, account numbers, passwords, etc)?
Read More