Three missionaries – Fred Schaeffer, Mark Tronson and David Smethhurst
At last the big banks have come to the party and fixing a long standing issue where it takes days to see money transferred from one bank (read a mission society) to another bank (read a missionary's bank account).
News.com recent article explains how the problem is being fixed so such transfers happen immediately (almost at once).
This is the question: In the age of the instant everything, why does the money I transfer electronically disappear from my account immediately, but take up to five business days to reach its destination?
That is a long time for missionaries to wait for much needed funds when transferred from their mission societies.
Giftings from many ordinary people and churches come into missionary societies ear marked for missionaries they support, or some times direct deposits from their private bank accounts to missionary's accounts.
Can you imagine any company paying wages and salaries by direct bank transfers payments and saying – sorry employees, there will be a five day wait til you can access your legally earned monies. There would be a national outcry.
What if the politicians were face with this dilemma for their financial entitlements – they'd in the Parliament making new laws - faster than - as the late football coach Jack Gibson said of the speed of his top footballer - he was so quick he'd be in bed before the light went out - when he switched off the light at the door.
Yet missionaries for years have had to put up with this horrible and unethical delay.
Logos Hope – a missionary service
News.com Carin Pickworth asks: Are the financial institutions of Australia stocking their staff kitchens with Krispy Kreme or sending their executives on round-the-world trips with the interest they’re skimming from my sluggish transactions?
Australian Payment Clearing Association (APCA) CEO Leila Fourie has been faced with suspicion like mine more than once, but she is here to reassure us all. “Financial institutions give the payer the benefit of any interest until the nominated payment date and the payee gets the benefit from that date,” Ms Fourie said.
Apparently APCA imposes its own rules upon banks for payment clearing and the voluntary e-payments code and legal obligations must also be abided by, but at the end of the day, each financial institution operates within its own Terms and Conditions.
“The rules for clearing most payment instruments in Australia, including direct debits and direct credits, are governed by our organisation,” she said.
The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) told news.com.au the CBA make up to six transfers between the Big Four banks each weekday trying to get payments cleared as quickly as possible for anxious people like me, says Carin Pickworth.
Missions accountant Shirlene Bennett with missionary Delma Tronson
The good news is all of this fuss could soon go away instantly if the RBA delivers on its New Payments Policy (NPP) this year which promises “real time payments”. In 2014, 12 Authorised Deposit Taking Institutions committed to funding the operation of the NPP.
In their own words; “The NPP is being developed via industry collaboration to enable households, businesses and government agencies to make simply-addressed payments, with near real-time funds availability to the recipient, on a 24/7 basis.”
Carin Pickworth - I admit, my life is ruled by my mobile banking, mobile shopping, mobile gaming, mobile socialising, mobile memory-capturing mobile phone that is pretty much permanently connected to my head, hand, hip.
Moreover Carin says - “My baby boomer father will lament that my generation (Y) “expects everything yesterday”.
For missionaries it isn't yesterday that's the issue, it's that a transfer today means today.
Baptism in the Jordon - missionaries Mark Tronson baptising Lucille Bartholomeusz
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html