I am one of the crazy guys who actually LOVES taking up special offerings at church. I understand that giving must come from the heart, but I also believe that you have to teach students to give and you can have a fun time doing it! Here are some of my principles for taking up a creative offering:
1) CAUSE DRIVEN
The number one ingredient to a successful offering is being very clear and transparent for the reason that you’re taking up the offering. I am always very open about the purpose of the offering and I have learned that people will give if they truly know the purpose. If it’s a big offering, have pictures of the items you are raising money for.
Competition always creates a great offering! This can be done in many ways of the following ways: 1) The “oldie but goodie” guys against girls. 2) During your youth week it could be students versus the staff. 3) In a church auditorium if there are say 4 sections of seats, I will select a student from each section, give them a bucket and let them represent their section. We will then have a competition of sections to see who can bring up the most money.
I always make sure there is a reward for who gives the most. At camp it can be as easy as whatever group gives the most gets to stay out 30 minutes later, gets to sit on the platform, or come into the auditorium 30 minutes early.
Try to make the offering as simple as possible so that everyone in the room can understand the guidelines.
Yes, this is fun and exciting, but it is still a Christian discipline. Even though it’s a fun atmosphere it is also very important that you always clearly lay out the biblical mandate for giving.