This appeared in 1975; I was 23 at the time. I don't remember this article and if I had been born in 1975 would the 36-year-old I'd be today be motivated for any reason to research it.
*** w75 11/1 p. 651 Insight on the News ***Insight on the News “Pray Now, Pay Later
The phrase “pray now, pay later” appeared in a headline of the Philadelphia “Inquirer” in reporting on a church experiment due to go into effect shortly. A group of ten U.S. religions, including some major Lutheran, Episcopal, Methodist and Baptist denominations, have decided to try church collections by credit card. The experiment, sponsored by the National Council of Churches, will encourage participating church members to authorize credit-card transfers of a specified contribution to their church each month. The idea, a Council spokesman says, is that “this will provide the local church with regular income whether or not the local congregation is in attendance,” especially in “off-seasons,” like summer vacation time. The report on the experiment says that those joining the program will be “giving unto business what belongs to business—a profit.” How so? “Participating banks will charge 65 cents a transaction, and the credit card companies will rake off 3 percent of every donation.” Obviously someone benefits, but how much spiritual benefit is the modern churchgoer getting?
What about this Awake item from 2003. Let's take the position that an 18-year-old might have read it so born in 1985. Would anyone 18 and older remember this?
*** g03 8/8 p. 29 Watching the World ***Plastic Card Donations“
A growing number of Canadian churches” are adopting “modern banking practices, introducing bank cards and credit cards as convenient ways for parishioners to make collection-plate donations,” says the VancouverSun newspaper. Debit machines have been placed in church halls along with “donation envelopes with options for automatic account withdrawal and credit card payment.” Individuals simply swipe their card, key in the amount they wish to donate, and then put a copy of the receipt in the collection plate. As one pastor stated: “A cashless society is where society is going. Why not the church?” A church treasurer joked: “You get air-miles on your card, plus you go to heaven for donations. Just think of it as double reward points.”
Is this the reason the WTS is going to cards? Do people fear mugging if they carry cash to the conventions/assemblies/KHs?
*** g90 6/22 p. 28 Watching the World ***NO
Customers entering the showrooms of a furniture factory in Johannesburg, South Africa, are met with the sign: “We do not accept cash. Cheques or credit cards only.” According to TheStar, a newspaper in Johannesburg, the owner believes that the handling of cash attracts muggers and robbers, and he has decided to have neither cash in the safe nor money transported to the bank. Thus, all business is done by check or credit card only. The employees also receive their weekly wage by check. “They were uneasy every time a stranger walked in,” says the owner about his employees, “but are now more relaxed since the no-cash policy.”
So how is it now that the WTS is putting such credit/debit machines in KHs and Assembly Halls and can look jws in the face...of course, new light.