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One Dollar at a Time

Church plants reap benefits of congregation’s giving program.
Destination Church in Hopewell, Virginia, encourages generosity and faithful giving through its Dollar Club program, which currently generates $10,000 to $15,000 a month for distribution to bless people in crises, the foster care system, educational programs, or other ministry projects.

Earlier this year, Destination Church’s leadership decided to use Dollar Club funds to dole out $1,000 to each of the 21 church planting projects represented at a Church Multiplication Network (CMN) Launch training event in Richmond.

Destination Church lead pastor Bryan W. Briggs, a member of the CMN Lead Team, says the Dollar Club started with the idea that funds received through the club would be used to do for one what church leaders wished could be done for everybody. Attendees of the church, which has 3,000 adherents, give at least $1 a month to join the club.

When the program began in 2017, it generated around $800 a month in giving. Each time the staff gifted the money, members made a video of the event so everyone who gave could see the impact and participate in the celebration.

The recent gift to 21 church planting projects reflects the catalyst of growth within the program. Briggs, 43, says the program evolved from outreach days of doing for one into the monthly Do for One Dollar Club when Destination Church, a six-year old church plant at the time, committed to purchase a building.

The move required a $1.5 million renovation project. Briggs already had signed contracts to begin the work on the building when the contractor informed him that the original quote needed to be increased by an additional $500,000. A day later, a bank representative called to say that although the church had been preapproved for a loan to cover about half of the expenses, the financial institution had decided not to provide financing. The news proved stressful to Briggs.

“We were in a season of prayer and fasting, and I felt God saying, I brought you this building to teach the church how to give. If you do a building campaign, the giving will stop when the building is done.

Instead of undertaking a building campaign, Briggs felt led to teach the biblical principles of giving through tithes, offering, and Spirit-led giving.

The church instituted three levels of giving. Entry level giving begins at the Dollar Club, which gives new donors an opportunity to see the impact of teamwork and what God can do with a $1 donation. The second level of giving includes regular tithes and offerings. The third level, which Briggs calls Legacy, provides for programs such as missions.

“Our miracle story was that within 10 months, we paid cash for everything we had to do for that building,” Briggs says.

Because Briggs understands the financial strain of beginning a church, giving $21,000 to help 21 church plants begin in 2021 seemed like a natural step to the Destination Church leadership.

“The ‘I can’t believe they did this’ nature of the Dollar Club speaks to the generous spirit of both Destination Church and Bryan and Kelly Briggs,” says Jeffery Portmann, Church Multiplication director. “Some may think a check for $1,000 is a relatively small thing in the scope of raising thousands of dollars for a church plant, but that gift was significant to each planter.”

Rebecca Burtram

Rebecca Burtram is an Assemblies of God pastor in Charlottesville, Virginia, a pastor's wife, mother to three, and an English teacher. She is the author of Our Broken Hallelujahs, and she blogs at rebeccaburtram.com.