Frequently asked questions
Why can’t my parish offer Direct Debit?
Direct Debiting is a highly regulated system, and is only offered by Banks to large businesses/organisations who are considered to have the necessary internal control systems required to process significantly high numbers of Direct Debits.
How can we use the Parish Landing or HomePage within the PGS website?
Each Parish has a dedicated Parish Homepage within PGS's website. This is designed to provide people interested in giving to your Parish assurance that they are about to donate to the correct Parish. It is also designed to help your parish be found within search results and most importantly it acts as the starting point of the simple 3 step giving process. The website address of this page, or the unique QR code on it, can be used as a reference to give to potential donors within Parish literature and information.
What is a QR Code and what would Parish's use it for?
A QR Code is an optical barcode that contains a unique website destination address. In our case, each Parish has a dedicated PGS homepage within the PGS's website and the QR codes are different for each Parish and linked to each Parish's homepage. The QR codes can be embedded onto communication materials such as leaflets, posters and emails to provide readers with a quick link to where donations to your Parish can be made from.
What is the Direct Debit Guarantee?
Donors are protected by the Direct Debit Guarantee, which makes it a very safe system. More information is available at www.directdebit.co.uk or www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk (search for ‘direct debit’).
What happens at the Offertory?
When donors join PGS, they can use PGS tokens to place on the plate or in the collection bag at the Offertory. The PGS tokens enable us to participate in the Offertory.
How can donors join PGS?
Once your parish has registered, donors can start supporting your church by donating online, completing a paper form or signing up via our telephone service. Find your parish here.
What measure of inflation is used?
The PGS applies the most recently published January RPI on the anniversary of our donations through the PGS. This increase is only applied to those of us who have ‘opted in’.
What is the anonymous option?
All information is treated as confidential. However, some donors may wish to remain anonymous to the parish and their church, which means only the amount of the gift will be shared on the parish statement. We encourage donors to remain known to their parish so that you may thank them and avoid mistakenly approaching them in the future about supporting the church.
Can our donors choose the day the gift is collected?
Unfortunately not. To enable PGS to run cost effectively and efficiently, one date had to be chosen for all donations. The 1st of the month is an appropriate point in the month based on 1 Corinthians 16:2 (NIV): ‘On the first day of each week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made.’
How often will PGS contact its donors?
Once registered (via online, phone or paper form), donors will receive an initial letter confirming their details and welcoming them to the scheme. All those who have requested to inflate their giving annually will then receive a letter one month preceding the anniversary of their first gift informing them of their soon-to-be inflated gift (with the option to vary it). There is no further communication from the PGS Team to its donors unless there is a genuine administrative reason. It is important that the relationship remains with the donor and the parish.
The donation claimed through the Parish Giving Scheme, will be passed back to your Parish by 10th of the month. Gift Aid will be sent separately once PGS has received it from HMRC; however you will still have to claim Gift Aid for other donations received by your Parish.
If you are having difficulties with claiming Gift Aid please look on the Parishes Resources Website.
If one of your donors becomes eligible to claim Gift Aid after starting their donation through the Parish Giving Scheme they will need to complete a Gift Aid declaration.