The first Sunday of each month Hubby Tony and I help count money after the 9:00 Mass. Our group of six people (three couples) handles the collections from Saturday night and the first two Sunday services. A second group meets on Monday and takes care of the rest.
Everyone on the team has a job. Tony and I do the regular weekly envelopes Another couple counts the loose cash, and the third couple does the unusual envelopes and donations. Normally the job takes about an hour. I knew that the Triduum and Easter masses and services would bring in extra attendees and larger collections. However, we were all surprised by how much more. Instead of just one large plastic bank bag for each service there were two or three.
After a little complaining about the amount of work we'd have to do, we dove in and got started separating the loose cash from the envelopes and dividing the envelopes into piles by type. Tony and I sat across from each other at the long tale, grabbed our huge pile of envelopes, and started working.
Over the months I've developed a system that works for me. First I open each envelope and look to see if it contains cash or a check. Next, I write the amount on the outside of the envelope, then make piles of checks, check envelopes, cash, and cash envelopes. After all envelopes are emptied, I use an adding machine to run tapes on each pile, then compare the tapes of the cash and check envelopes with the tapes of the actual cash and checks. They should match. However, I usually make a mistake somewhere and have to go back and figure out where.
Today I knew everyone had plans for the day and I didn't want to be the one to hold things up. My pile of checks was three times as high as it would be on a normal Sunday. With trepidation I started entering amounts into the adding machine. When I reached the end of the pile of checks I struck a balance, then started doing the same thing with the stack of envelopes. The closer I got to the bottom the more nervous I got. After I entered the last amount I closed my eyes, said a quick prayer, and hit the enter key.
THE AMOUNTS MATCHED! It was an Easter miracle.
Even though my pile of cash was also much larger than normal I wasn't too concerned about balancing it. Sure enough, it also worked the first time. Gleefully I filled out my form and handed it over to the person who was putting the figures into the computer.