Using the Giving Screen

The Giving Screen allows you to enter contributions for a variety of categories as well as track pledge campaigns and giving.

Giving Dates

To enter or edit contributions, click on an existing date in the white box click "Add a Giving Batch Date" option. A calendar will open up. Select the new giving date and click on "Add Selected Date."

If you enter the wrong date, you can change it to the correct date by double-clicking the item in the list.

Entering contributions

Once the date has been created or selected, you can enter or edit contributions on the right side of the screen. To enter a new Contributor, you can type the person's envelope number (if your ministry uses envelope numbers), or the first few letters of the name into the "Contributor Name" field.

Then highlight and select the name you want to add. In order for names to show up in this field, they must already be entered on the People Screen. To add names not already in the ChurchTrac database, type their name into this field and press enter. It will prompt you to add them to the database.

In ChurchTrac, each contribution must be assigned to an individual. When you have a contribution from a nameless donor, it still needs to be assigned to an individual when entering the amount of the donation on the contribution screen. To record anonymous contributions like this, you must first create a fictitious "person" on the People screen. This person can be named "Unknown Person" or "Offering Plate" or whatever you wish. Just be sure to give this person both a first and last name (like "Unknown" and "Person")

Enter the amount, and then choose a category (or fund) for the contribution for tracking purposes. Verify if the contribution is tax deductible or not (the default setting for the tax deductible status is designated when the category is created).

Contributions that are marked as deductible will appear on the individual's contribution statement for tax purposes. You also have the option of entering a note in the memo field. The text that you type into the memo field will also appear on the individual's contribution statement. You can use this feature to specify what a particular donation was for, to record check numbers, etc.

If an individual has given a contribution that is intended to be split among two (or more) categories, you will simply click the white ( ) to add multiple categories.

For example, if John writes a $250.00 check and intends that $200.00 be used as a budget offering and $50.00 for the building fund, you'll have to enter this contribution separately.

Enter the first amount and select the appropriate category. Then click the white ( ) and enter the second amount and the appropriate category. There is no limit to the number of contribution entries a single individual can have for a certain date. Once you have completed the entries for a given name, click on "Add this Contribution."

To edit a contribution, click on the appropriate donation, then click Edit below. To delete a contribution, click on the delete button.

Entering Non-Cash contributions

In the U.S., the IRS rules state that the donor determines the value of a non-cash contribution. For this reason, we recommend that you enter non-cash donations on the Giving screen with an amount of Zero, then add a short memo to describe the item that was donated. Alternatively, you may wish to give the donor a letter on church letterhead acknowledging the gift.

Giving summary

A running total of the amount given for a particular date will appear at the bottom of the screen.

Add or Edit categories

Click on the "Categories" button on the toolbar to create new giving categories or to edit existing ones.

To add a new giving category, click on the "Create New Category" button. Follow that up by entering the name into the "New Category Name" field and click "Ok." Then select the tax deductible status for contributions assigned to that category. This will show up as the default on the Contributions Entry screen each time the category is selected; however, it can be changed as needed when each contribution is entered.

Editing categories are done just as easily. Click on the category that you desire to edit from the list, and make the necessary changes on the right.

Important Tax Rule: Any "contribution" in which the contributor receives something in return should not be marked as tax deductible. For example, if a person "purchases" a t-shirt, church dinner, or pays for their child to attend youth camp, the deductible box should be unchecked because the IRS does not consider these items to be contributions for tax purposes. If a person donates $1000.00 to be used toward youth camp, and receives nothing in return for this contribution, then that contribution would be considered deductible. If you have any questions regarding the deductibility of contributions, you should ask an accountant or tax specialist.