U.S. churches are costing tax payers $71 billion a year

That’s $71 billion that could go towards helping people. Instead, it’s going into church coffers.

A 2015 study says that tax exempt churches in the United States are costing its citizens $71 billion each year in tax breaks.

According to the Secular Policy Institute, religious groups receive $35.3 billions in federal income tax subsidies and $26.2 billion in property tax credits. They also enjoy $6.1 billion in state income tax, $1.2 billion of parsonage and $2.2 billion in faith-based initiative subsidies.

SPI reports that if “religious organizations (ie. churches, synagogues, mosques, etc.) were taxed like for-profit agencies, it was found that this could generate upwards of $71 billion per year in tax revenue.”

“…even if churches were merely held to the standards of other non-profit agencies, this could generate $16.75 billion in tax revenue per year.The report estimate for the total subsides enjoyed by religious organizations, but they do not account for tax credits like sales taxes, local sales and income taxes volunteer labor subsidy, and donor-tax exemptions.”

Many Americans believe religious organizations require these heavy tax breaks for use in their charitable works. However, researchers at Secular Humanism report that many popular churches are in fact using far less of their funds compared to non-profits.

The Mormon Church, for example, spends roughly .7% of its annual income on charity. Their study of 271 congregations found an average of 71% of revenues going to ‘operating expenses’…Compare this to the American Red Cross, which uses 92.1% of revenues for physical assistance and just 7.9% on operating expenses. The authors also note that Wal-Mart, for instance, gives about $1.75 billion in food aid to charities each year, or twenty-eight times all of the money allotted for charity by the United Methodist Church and almost double what the LDS Church has given in the last twenty-five years.

While some churches actually participate in charitable works, they do not perform half as much humanitarian aid as a true none-profit organization.

According to Patheos, “churches should be entitled to the same tax breaks as other charitable groups, as long as they are held to the same standard, and not given the free pass to tax free status they currently enjoy.”

Featured image via Wikipedia



  1. Avatar


    December 21, 2015 at 6:11 am

    You need to talk as poles to apples. Universities and hospitals have much higher operating expenses and cost much more in list revenue.
    The United Methodist Church offers you 100% of your mission donation to go to mission. Odd that you compare the low percent that Walmart gives to charity compared to a church with way lesser income and higher percentage of charity.
    Even tough a church has little tax they do end up paying some tax, which is more than America’s largest corporations pay.
    In summary, your data is fuzzy.

  2. Avatar

    Kevin Conway

    December 21, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Children are being raped by a lot of these people. Your excuses are fuzzy.

  3. Avatar


    December 21, 2015 at 7:23 am

    You neglect to speak of the Prosperity Churches where ministers make millions of dollars a year. You fail to mention Mega Churches worth billions. Your thinking is quite fuzzy.

  4. Avatar


    December 21, 2015 at 7:29 am

    A bit more then fuzzy, more like Trumps hair.

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    December 21, 2015 at 7:32 am

    Should those tax breaks include the 65 million for a pastors private jet?

  6. Avatar

    Brooklyn Culture Jammers

    December 21, 2015 at 8:43 am

    The churches that I have been involved with over the past 25 years are not profit centers for anybody. They’re involved in mission. Whether that means outreach for the homeless, soup kitchens for those in need, counseling or other deeds worth doing, they are accountable to their parishioners and are not wasting money on arena seats or lavish buildings. The Joel Osteens of the world are not even a rounding error. There’s also a case to be made that if you want to argue against political activism by churches, you have to start by admitting that there wouldn’t have been an Underground Railroad or an abolition movement without religious activists working out of churches, nor would there have been a civil rights movement. the tax haul from eliminating church exemptions would probably not cover all the services that many congregations would drop. And if you’re going to call out non-profit statuses and the people who have them despite politics, why aren’t you starting with the NRA? Or the NFL or a host of other ‘non-profit’ groups that are also gaming the system?

  7. Avatar

    Jeffrey Lee

    December 21, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    Churches were formed for one reason only, to control people. Anyone with a bit of intelligence knows this. I bet you think Christmas is Jesus’ birthday too.

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  9. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 21, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    Critics here definitely lack an understanding of church life. Don’t know which is most entertaining? Certainly the one that assumes pastors with jets are a norm. Perhaps it is the idea that mega churches are the norm or that child abuser sneak through church filters more than they do anywhere else.
    However, Jeffrey Lee, your conspiracy theory is worthy of a trophy. So glad the world lacks your “intelligence.”

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    Scott jacobs

    December 21, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    What a great investment into the spiritual health and good works of our churches!

  11. Avatar

    Leonard Sica

    December 21, 2015 at 5:43 pm

    Bravo !! Haha !!

  12. Avatar

    Leonard Sica

    December 21, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    haha !! Well said

  13. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 21, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    It is a great investment, Scott. It is sort of like education. It only seems like a bad investment to those who refuse to use it.

  14. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 21, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    Kevin, can I presume that you are against education? The number of predators in education is no different than those in religion. Further, can we assume that you are against youth sports, medicine….
    The issue is that those who are against religion don’t base anything on facts.

  15. Avatar

    Guy Courtney

    December 21, 2015 at 7:58 pm

    What is wrong with holding them accountable for their write-offs? The author isn’t saying that the breaks should be taken away. He’s just saying they should not get a free pass on everything.

  16. Avatar

    Zach Buligard

    December 22, 2015 at 12:06 am

    These critical comments lack a bit of intelligence. I mean, if you’re going to bash it, at least try buddy!!

  17. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 12:28 am

    Very good point. I live in France where we all pay what americans might see as crippling taxes. But my doctor sees me almost without wait and I have a far better chance of survival if i get cancer. My education and my childrens is all free even after university. People are respected a lot more here no matter what their job. I think the USA should stop seeing taxes as a communist threat and take some responsibilty for social care on a national and global level. Good social care is possible and far more effective without political or religious affiliation. I think both church and business in the USA need to pay up and shut up.

  18. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 4:04 am

    Churches have tax break but when owners of multi billions dollars company get tax breaks for doing nothing for the community that’s ok. They get tax break for the boats they buy house they buy money they make

  19. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 6:06 am

    The US operates under the “no taxation without representation” clause. If religion is to be taxed, religion *must* be represented. The tax break on religion therefore serves to maintain the separation of church and state.

    Unless you remove the no taxation without representation principle, you cannot tax religion.

    However, religion should not receive government funding at all.

    It should also be noted that similar rules apply to all tax-exempt organisations. Sure, there’s religion, but there’s also feminist and progressive organisations that operate on the same principle and receive government funding.

    You can make the point that anything tax-exempt will bring in tax money if it is taxed, but that’s not an argument for anything. My main point is that everyone, secularist or no, who is for the taxation of religion is by proxy for the destruction of the wall separating church and state.

  20. Avatar

    Donna Schiavone

    December 22, 2015 at 6:08 am

    I agree 100%. Can you help me move to France? I will learn French.

  21. Avatar

    Donna Schiavone

    December 22, 2015 at 6:11 am

    If you want this addressed there’s only one President – Bernie Sanders.

  22. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 6:36 am

    Another thing to consider is that a major part of the mission of the church is to provide spiritual care and feeding to its attendees. You could argue that the church services and programs they run are a form of charity…their operating budget is funding these things. Weekly services with practical life counseling, kids programs, AA meetings, etc. The value of morally based community centers around the country can’t be overstated.
    I agree that most churches need to do more charitable outreach and missions work, but that’s not the sole purpose of most churches.

  23. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Good facts

  24. Avatar

    sondra muench

    December 22, 2015 at 10:09 am

    The system France uses does not exist in the USA. For all the tax dollars US citizens and business pay, tax monies are improperly managed. It has nothing to do with churches not paying taxes. It has to do with how the government spends what they receive.

  25. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 10:59 am

    I…what? Your representation is it going to ballot. You clearly are misunderstanding the clause you’re standing behind.

  26. Avatar

    Mile Parent

    December 22, 2015 at 11:06 am

    Believing in Fairytales shouldn’t be tax deductible or mom taxable. I don’t want to subsidize anyone’s fantacy
    Deductions should be used only for true charitable uses.

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  28. Avatar

    Joe Warner

    December 22, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Permanent residents are taxed but not allowed to vote. I was told that it is not taxation without representation because anybody can address their senator or representative. The same with churches. Best to tax them. Especially if they act as political platforms.

  29. Avatar


    December 22, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    It it isn’t YOUR money, therefore you aren’t subsidizing the activities of the church.

  30. Avatar

    Steven Altsman

    December 22, 2015 at 3:44 pm

    That’s some unusual mental gymnastics to get to that conclusion: Warren Buffet costs me $41 billion because I am unable to rob him blind.

    The problem is not acquiring the revenue stream, the problem is the uncontrolled spending and shrinking value of the dollar.

  31. Avatar

    Common Sense

    December 22, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Please tell us what country ever succeeded under socialism?

  32. Avatar

    Joseph mahma

    December 22, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    The United States of America

  33. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 12:46 am

    I agree with you.

  34. Avatar

    Pat Zanger

    December 23, 2015 at 5:27 am

    Bernie Sanders is a self-described social democrat. Why are so many Americans so afraid of words ending in -ism? If what Sanders proposes was called “socialocracy” would you be open to looking at his platform? I’m an American who has lived in Canada and Belgium, two countries with universal health care and far healthier social safety nets than anything on offer (however begrudgingly) in the USA. Western Europe is FULL of social democracies and, financial crises notwithstanding, the quality of life in these countries continues to be good.

  35. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 5:47 am

    You clearly A) Don’t understand that Sanders is a democratic socialist, not a socialist. B) Don’t realize what democratic socialism is, or C) Don’t care to educate yourself, like most of the religious and/or right wing conservatives I’ve met.

    I’m betting on C myself.

  36. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 7:24 am

    Religion itself is not exactly full of facts. In fact, quite the opposite.

  37. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 10:22 am

    I agree with jopublick

  38. Avatar

    donald blowers

    December 23, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    Why do the religious nutters in my street wait till December 25 to be nice to people in need. Even then its fake and rather crappy.
    I dont get it.

  39. Avatar

    Thom Omytes

    December 23, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    I’m an American, I whole heartedly agree with you, and if I said this in a local bar they’d beat me to death and spit tobacco juice on me. This country is doomed, they’re just too busy watching the Kardashians and masturbating to their Donald Trump posters to know it. Got room for me, over there?

  40. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    We are subsidizing the churches in that the rest of us pay for all the government services these tax scofflaws enjoy without paying: police and fire departments; public schools; roads, bridges etc.; legislation; and everything else our state government provides paid for through real estate taxes.

  41. Avatar

    Dr Bill

    December 23, 2015 at 5:02 pm

    Hi Tom. Do you have any links to back up your surprising claim? perhaps you mean total number, not percentages? I am not at all confident we can actually know how many were involved in church predatory acts, as the organizations involved are adept at hiding and protecting the perpetrators.

  42. Avatar

    Dr Bill

    December 23, 2015 at 5:04 pm

    Hi Common Sense. How about “All of Europe”?

  43. Avatar

    Cleatis yokel

    December 23, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    Do you know that 100% those funds go to missions?? Has your church issued a report detailing how they spent all that money?! Has it been audited by independent auditors? I highly doubt it. Keep believing…

  44. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 23, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    Sorry to hear about how pathetic your religion is. Just don’t impose your failures on the rest of us, please.

  45. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    Been to the south lately/ever?

  46. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 7:31 pm

    It sounds like some of you need to re-read this statement: “Those churches should be entitled to the same tax breaks as other charitable groups, as long as they are held to the same standard, and not given the free pass to tax free status they currently enjoy.” IF your church is truly generous and truly gives back to the community, then they SHOULD continue to receive the tax breaks and subsidies, churches should NOT receive tax breaks simply because they are a church.

  47. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 7:34 pm


  48. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 8:36 pm

    You nailed it, thank you

  49. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 10:14 pm

    These fairy tale cults are annoying!

  50. Avatar

    Robert Smash-Antonio

    December 23, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Also to give people hope in a hopeless and brutal world that a privileged kid living a comfortable life in the first world could never imagine, but you are educated, you know that.

  51. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    Thanks for that perspective

  52. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 10:25 pm

    Why aren’t those other organizations being called out at the same level? I think it might be because of the common understanding that there is a separation of church and state in this country.

  53. Avatar

    Steven Peeke

    December 23, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    Wait….you think religion isn’t represented?

  54. Avatar

    sam r couch

    December 23, 2015 at 10:39 pm

    and I think you are right

  55. Avatar

    sam r couch

    December 23, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    Brooklyn I agree about the NRA and the NFL

  56. Avatar

    sam r couch

    December 23, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Common Sense you should change your internet name to “do some research”

  57. Avatar

    Neal Krug

    December 23, 2015 at 10:49 pm

    well said, We are in a time warp back to the 50″s. time will tell, if it is the 1950’s or the 1850’s

  58. Avatar

    Rock Southward

    December 23, 2015 at 11:01 pm ~ one man can change the world

  59. Avatar

    Sarah Hall

    December 23, 2015 at 11:02 pm

    Yeah, all the others that pay up get represented, ie they buy the government, why shouldn’t religion get it’s claws in equally with all the other juggernauts

  60. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 11:06 pm

    I completely agree.

  61. Avatar

    travis stone (@SUP3RTRAV)

    December 23, 2015 at 11:08 pm

    Well according to science God is not real. So there’s a fact for you.

  62. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 11:08 pm

    Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland

  63. Avatar

    Moe Tom

    December 23, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    And those who are part of a religion base everything on facts, “and on the 3rd day he rose from the dead.”

  64. Avatar

    Valerie Swan

    December 23, 2015 at 11:34 pm

    Sweden, Norway, Denmark, all of whom have a high standard of living.

  65. Avatar


    December 23, 2015 at 11:48 pm

    Christmas is a day set aside to recognize the birth of Jesus! If you had a bit of intelligence you would know this…..

  66. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 12:05 am

    At 19 I went to college with a view to becoming a minister/priest.What I saw of ‘money matters’ told me not to become a ‘paid minister’.So I became an unpaid Preacher for over 20 years.. I held just about every lay office including managing church and circuit finances.
    My conclusion to all these experiences (I am now 71) is very simple: if you want to know about any religion/denomination/cult then follow the money.
    A true disciple cannot follow 2 masters simultaneously,especially when one is concerned with the spiritual and the other the material.
    So now we really see what right wing evangelicals are all about and why they fight against Swedish Socialism’ where you can choose to ensure your tax money does NOT go to finance someone else’s money orientated ‘belief’ system.

  67. Avatar

    Mark Miller

    December 24, 2015 at 12:15 am

    Churches are no different than Walmart and should be taxed the same as any business. You can include temples and mosques in that equation too.

  68. Avatar

    Radiobob LeVangie

    December 24, 2015 at 12:38 am

    in 1972 a marine friend and I immigrated to Canada and saw all these same things in BC Canada, single payer health care, a house in the mountains cost $250.00 (a good one too), taxes $10,00 per year. I came back to US to fix things, please don’t tell me its not working, I have my whole life here invested…maybe you’d be more useful if you’d be involved (in the changes we are making) but if being in a nice place is an end all, then so be it, I’m happy enough being on beautiful coast Maine and still making a difference, but I know where there is an awesome place to hide out in,,,,BC

  69. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 12:52 am

    I’ve always thought it was crazy that religious institutions got huge tax breaks. It just seems like an obvious scam. I want to start a religion, tell people they need to give me 10% of their income, then not pay tax on it.

  70. Avatar

    Spence T

    December 24, 2015 at 1:18 am

    You’re more than welcome to visit a baptist church any day and you’ll realize quickly that nobody will try to control you or tell you to do anything. I personally promise you will be received with nothing but love no matter what you bring

  71. Avatar

    Vaughan Sinclair

    December 24, 2015 at 1:20 am

    Tom Moe! Bad bad, Tom Moe!

    You did not respond to the Children being Raped! Bad, Tom Moe!

    I will not be so gutless. Here is mine. To Kevin: Yes they are and it is
    horrific! While not all of them (the tax free fools) are rapists; One is Too Many. Give all your tax exempt cash to stop this!

    Tom Moe? when you pass a ‘Rape Relief’ centre, put what you have in an envelope, mark it donation, and walk out.
    -Vaughan Sinclair

  72. Avatar

    Norman Welch

    December 24, 2015 at 1:24 am

    God is Gay

  73. Avatar

    nelaco (@Nelaco)

    December 24, 2015 at 1:24 am

    Churches are like Goodwill Industries that supposedly are intended to help others but have ended up making rich group of ministers, leaders and executives under the umbrella of charity tax exempt companies. . For instance, Goodwill Industries made the last year 4 BILLION DOLLARS, totally exempt of taxes, but they only use a fraction of such amount for charity .….Honestly this Company must have lost its charitable status company long ago, from the time when a group of greedy unscrupulous individuals took over the company writing themselves obscene 7 digit salaries per year plus bonuses. While Goodwill and churches pay minimum wages to their employees, these ones are authorized to work part time only to avoid paying benefits.

  74. Avatar

    Christian Mathers

    December 24, 2015 at 1:31 am

    Conspiracy eh? Is there a bigger Conspiracy than Christianity?

  75. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 1:47 am

    This is a very valid point you have made, which I would wager many people haven’t considered

  76. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 1:52 am

    2016 is here and humanity still pours billions into imaginary friends …

  77. Avatar

    Amy Lynne Sweet

    December 24, 2015 at 1:53 am

    eliminate all non-profit tax exemptions. That figure could increase by 100 times.Just think how a community like LA or NY if they had a 5% increase in tax revenue

  78. Avatar

    E. Anne Wasson

    December 24, 2015 at 2:06 am

    Oh, pull—ezz! I don’t believe this was meant as a platform for the presidential campaign!

  79. Avatar

    Ryan Lee Gehris

    December 24, 2015 at 2:08 am

    I love you where have you been all my life? Oh yea France, when can I meet you?!:)

  80. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 2:15 am

    Heretic! !!!!!!! It’s Santa’s Birthday.

  81. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 2:41 am

    All that money – and absolutely nothing good comes of it.

  82. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 3:07 am

    “Those against religion dont base anything on facts”. You are killing me! And what is religion based on? The scientific method? Religion itself IS the best example of a something not based in facts!

  83. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 3:22 am

    They charge for all of those services you mentioned. Churches charge people for any use of the church, even marriages.

  84. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 3:57 am

    yup his article is liberal crap

  85. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 4:07 am

    That’s right! When you don’t like the truth, stick your head in the sand, insult others and blame everyone else. What a miserable life you must have. Hope it gets better for you!

  86. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 4:30 am

    The LDS church does not charge its members for the use of church buildings, nor does it pay for its clergy. They will reimburse expenses incurred by its members when they purchase things for the church/activity but it doesn’t pay for time, that is all volunteer. As for charitable giving, members pay tithes which cover operating expenses for their own branch/wards/stakes, it also goes to fund activities, etc. Members can also donate more to help directly fund those in need in their own wards through fast offerings and mission funds. There is also a fairly efficient system in which members can receive food subsidies and access to assistance for paying living expenses when one is down on their luck. This article really as a hit piece against The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints…and not a well researched crititique, I might add.

  87. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 5:26 am

    i agree france has it right on this

  88. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 5:27 am

    First I must say “All religions are stupid ” Religion is used as a force of evil in this world and that we give them tax breaks is an outrage.

  89. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 5:33 am

    Missions – going to other countries, bringing diseases that have wiped out cultures, forced people to convert to Christianity on threat of death, bringing bibles when people are in crisis and need food and shelter. I could go on, but you get the idea.

  90. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 5:35 am

    I completely agree with you. Thanks for your comment.

  91. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 5:53 am

    You only have to look at the palatial estates of many of these “prosperity ministers ” to see there is something innately wrong but then again “if you believe in God your troubles will fade and you will be rewarded with that promotion. .you will come into money..your financial security is set if only you believe…and if prosperity doesn’t come home to roost well keep praying and giving tithe and who knows maybe you too can live in a multimillion dollar compound paid for by people who believe god’s riches are silver and gold. All this tax free because they are God’s missionaries. Prosperity religion ? “

  92. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:01 am

    Would have love to seen the percentages of the Catholic Church but perhaps that data is not obtainable.

    Religious institutions want a lot of say in our government but don’t pay taxes.

  93. Avatar

    Kristian Toimil

    December 24, 2015 at 6:02 am

    To those who doubt Tom’s claim, I can affirm them, as I had to go through training to work with children in my non-profit activities. I, too, was surprised to find that priests/ministers do not make up the largest group numerically or percentage wise. Dads are the main group (in fact 75% of abuse comes from a family member), followed by teachers and coaches. I don’t have the statistics to show that priests/ministers commit less abuse than other professions (I also don’t have the statistics to show that priests/ministers DO commit more abuse than other professions).

  94. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:07 am

    Spot on! Civilization isn’t free and wealth does not trickle down. A tree does not grow from the leaves down. Neither does an economy.

  95. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:18 am

    The biggest issue is that Churches are not allowed to enjoy these tax exempt privileges if they get involved in politics, so any church which actively promotes voting for certain individuals or a party violates this and should then be taxed. Too many churches are violating this and not being penalized!!

  96. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:35 am

    My name is Joe. Point well made. I Concur.

  97. Avatar

    Brooklyn Culture Jammers

    December 24, 2015 at 6:48 am

    boothv, the laws governing nonprofits and politics are routinely gamed. The churches supporting the Civil Rights movement could advocate for civil rights, but they couldn’t say ‘support our rights by voting for x’. The NRA is skirting the law routinely, but they can say that they’re just providing information to their membership.

  98. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:51 am

    It becomes so easy to get superficial and think that science is about facts and religion is about faith. In reality, they are both fact and faith based. Religion takes a look at existence and says, “this all requires a source. The most likely original source would be an infinite source with huge amounts of energy.” Science takes this leap of faith beyond our comfort level of logic and says, “Somehow nothing made nothing create everything. It is our belief even though it is scientifically impossible.”
    Who is basing fact and who is trying to manipulate myth?

  99. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:51 am

    And these missions do what exactly? With so many going to third world countries I would expect to see more progress. Ministering is one thing, helping is another.

  100. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:52 am


  101. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 6:56 am


  102. Avatar

    Jodie Fleck Ervin

    December 24, 2015 at 7:01 am

    The cost is much higher when you add the cost of preventing them from victimizing everyone with their notions of virtue. Re: Kim Davis

  103. Avatar

    Uwe Schnellmann

    December 24, 2015 at 7:03 am

    Well,well My dear “Common Sense” you should use the meaning of your name lol.If you equate social Democracy with Communism than you are right,but not informed You are telling us that Canada and all European Democracies Are not succeeding? They are Social Democracies so they are Doomed as to your uneducated opinion.You make me sad

  104. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 7:10 am

    I have seen a lot of posts about taxes in Europe. I lived in Germany for five years. Be fortunate you do not live there. If you claim a religious preference you are taxed for that faith.

    What people do not understand the money collected in churches goes for the upkeep of the buildings, paying the utility bills, and the salaries of the pastors, etc. There are multiple things these tax exempt organizations do for the poor in the communities. Our church collected blankets in November to assist people who are homeless. One of the churches in our local area has a food pantry which gives, not sells the food to people in need. Donations to church organizations are not always monetary. They come in forms of food, clothing, etc.

    As far as pastors having personal jets, you’re thinking of pastors such as Jerry Falwell or the Jim and Tammy Baker’s of the world. Those who claimed the money was going to a good cause, when in reality it goes in their pockets.

    I totally agree if the churches are taxed, then we will no longer have a separation of church and state. Everyone just needs to back-up and realize this nation was based on religious principles by our founding Fathers. Whether it is viewed as right or wrong at this point. It ‘s just so sad how far our country has gone when people with religious beliefs are targeted as bad. We have never turned assistance away regardless of religious preference or lack thereof.

    Have any of you considered that faith is not nor has it ever been based on tangible proof.

  105. Avatar

    Kristian Toimil

    December 24, 2015 at 7:39 am

    What is your concept of progress? Having a TV and shopping malls? We consider those in the Third World backwards, but sometimes I think we’re the ones who have it wrong

  106. Avatar

    Kristian Toimil

    December 24, 2015 at 7:50 am

    Catholic Relief Services is one of the largest (if not the largest) Catholic charity in the world. 92.1% of its donations go directly to its programs

  107. Avatar

    David Opsahl

    December 24, 2015 at 7:57 am

    Governments were formed for one reason only, to control people.
    I’ll take a church over a government. Especially since the “donations” government requests are enforced by force.

  108. Avatar

    terry jordan

    December 24, 2015 at 7:58 am

    The U.S. government/military industrial complex spends close to 60% of our taxes like Spartans, on the military, even when the military doesn’t ask for it. Our health? 5%, energy, 3%, education 6%…and on & on.

  109. Avatar

    B Smith

    December 24, 2015 at 8:08 am

    Very well said!

  110. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 8:17 am

    But yeah you don’t even live in the U.S. so…. grain of salt…

  111. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 8:26 am

    I agree with joepublick

  112. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 8:30 am

    Good summary of mockery some of these ingenuine actions that cost the meager a lot.

  113. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 8:38 am

    Big problem here is how no one has a problem with the government taking more tax money. The U.S. government is the largest tax exempt charity in the world. What percentage of their revenue goes to overhead?

  114. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:01 am

    The article refers to mega-churches who, quite frankly, are ruining the chances for smaller churches’ success due to their greed. Hmmm…where have I heard this before??

  115. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:04 am

    Totally agree

  116. Avatar

    Linda Huff

    December 24, 2015 at 9:05 am

    So many people will just read the headlines and run with it as if it were truth, simply by printing it….I agree with you…statistics can be manipulated to say anything you want them to…..

  117. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:20 am

    Some of us have never sat down and actually read the constitution, I get so sick of religitards crying about this is a Christian Nation and what our founding fathers believed… The word Jesus is not mentioned once, Article 6 paragraph 3 dismisses all religions as relevant to running a country, and John Adams (Treaty of Tripoli 1796) was quoted as saying “the United States is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion, so there you have it… They knew that religion would be more of a problem than a solution and here we are today with Muslim fueled terror and hate, Christians shooting up abortion clinics and the Southern Creed, God, Guns and the Bible…. $65 Million dollar jets, lavish mansions and televangelists filling super bowl stadiums and keeping all the receipts to tell thousands what Jesus really means… It’s all a scam, follow the money… It’s time to put taxes on these damn places of worship, you want to hear a message from Jesus, that will cost you an additional 10%…. Chuck it up or burn in hell… @ #godless

  118. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:35 am

    100% to go on mission? You mean preach to other people? That is not charitable work. Charitable work is feeding the hungry not preaching.

  119. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:40 am

    You can keep your socialists ways in France

  120. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:41 am

    Bologna…..hogwash. It’s about damn time churches get taxed ! With all the money that churches collect in total….poverty can be wiped out . But most churches are greedy !
    The Vatican is filthy rich….the money they have alone can wipe out poverty. It’s disgusting how they live in mansions and drive limos when there are homeless people and children living in poverty.

  121. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:53 am

    I have read every post on this and I’m sitting here in great sadness. Many like Mary in the last post are the ones hitting it on the head. But to see the constant bashing of religion is sad. Hate speech and demeaning someones ideas or beliefs, which I’ve read multiple times in these threads, really shows were we are as a nation. Pathetic people. We were looked at as the greatest nation, with its abundance of opportunities, and yes that also includes religion. It isn’t until recently that we have deminished in some regards to that idea. It is not because of religious parties being taxed that’s for sure. Remember this country was founded on that religious belief, no matter what that be. Taxing an entity that is supposed to be a place of safe haven is NOT going to solve the debt of this country. It will only lead to hate of religion, which is so clearly evident in this post and following threads. Pinning a countries corrupt and irresponsible spending on a religious group is now starting a bigger problem. Believe we have seen this happen before. Hitler ring a bell? religious or not we have to lloki at the nation and how do WE fix it collectively. Many have missed the point and showed true hate and hate leads to a path that is hard to come back from.

  122. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 9:57 am

    I’m all for churches and Religion. But they do need to pay their fair share of taxes or compensate with charity work.

  123. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Love love love this.

  124. Avatar

    Bill Smith

    December 24, 2015 at 10:34 am

    Like any other non-profit or even mega company, you should jumble all churches into this category. Yes there are some church pastors and churches who take full advantage of their parishioners and tax free laws. But millions of other churches that don’t. Just like not all non-profits give all of their proceeds to charity. A lot don’t.
    Also for those that have not please click the link of the resources they used. Use your own judgement on the credibility of the source.

  125. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 10:35 am

    If you remove the tax exempt status of charities many protestant churches especially would close. Catholic and LDS would survive financially, but many others would not. And the comparison to the Red Cross is apples and oranges. The Red Cross takes money and give it out immediately with barely any infrastructure. Churches maintain thousands of buildings, temples, church activities, and pastor salaries (except LDS do not have pastor salaries). They do what they can with leftover money, but helping the people physically is a secondary goal of churches, spiritual help is the primary goal.
    And the .7 LDS church comment is bogus, it does not include welfare and local community help.

  126. Avatar

    Bill smith

    December 24, 2015 at 10:37 am

    Do you also believe all gays are flamboyant? All blacks are criminals? All Jews are bad?

  127. Avatar

    Mark Hansen

    December 24, 2015 at 10:52 am

    yessssss !!

  128. Avatar

    Richard Crooks

    December 24, 2015 at 10:53 am

    Church’s should be taxed like everything else. They are nothing but Corporations in disguise.

  129. Avatar

    Thomas Miller

    December 24, 2015 at 11:18 am

    Need to be a lot of changes here in the US. The last company I worked for fired me after I got injured on the job. I now make 35% less at my new job and pay 25% more for worse insurance trying to keep my wife with cancer alive.

  130. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 11:39 am

    I personally don’t think any churches should voluntarily sacrifice their freedom of political speech under a 501 c3 just to save paying some tax money. One the other hand, no one on the Left is complaining about confiscating billions from American taxpayers and giving it away to BP and Exxon in the form of carbon trade that they sell back to themselves.

  131. Avatar

    Mark Mesker

    December 24, 2015 at 11:46 am

    Please….. All of you move to France, where you can be happy and post about how wonderful it is to live there. You all need to leave this terrible country that you currently live in,as for me… I will stay here and suffer, the American way!

  132. Avatar

    Russell Howard

    December 24, 2015 at 11:54 am

    The parishioners @ my family’s little church can barely pay the operating expenses: some weeks we’re in the red & others the black. I believe I’ve heard that the priest’s salary is pretty pathetic too, & Orthodox Christian priests (Eastern Orthodoxy is the 2nd largest Christian denomination in the world, but Americans don’t really seem to know that) are usually married w/ kids too. Additionally, our little Parish has the benefit of operating a small nursery school, but even having this in our favor still doesn’t keep us safe from our precarious financial position. Definitely think that taxing all churches would close our doors forever. I know that there are a lot of evangelical Protestant mega churches in other parts of the country (I’m on LI in NY), and i’m sure they’d be able to afford it, but there are a hell of a lot of little churches like my family’s that wouldn’t be able to. Are the people that want our gov’t to start taxing houses of worship ready to start closing churches like mine?

  133. Avatar

    Kevin Plamondon

    December 24, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Feel the Bern!! Bernie Sanders 2016!!!!

  134. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 12:55 pm

    well when a minister can afford his own million dollar jet and has a house worth 4.5 million and has a rolls royce to be chauffered in then yes its time to start taking thge church and minister with that kind of money

  135. Avatar

    DK KN

    December 24, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    The american red Cross spends nearly 20% of the money that it raises on more fundraising…..and another 40% on salaries so that 91% is just a lie….they still haven’t been honest about how they spent the $500 million they raised for Haiti because Haiti said they hardly received helped compared to the religious organizations who showed up.

  136. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 1:48 pm

    This group would tax its Mother’s dying breath.
    Who else owes you money???
    If we have not collected it in the history of the US they did not cost you anything.
    It was never collected so it was never available to be costing the tax payer.
    Instead of this kind of thought process how about we plug up the many ways that taxpayers hard earned cash manages to get redirected or outright disappears from the books.
    Or collect them from the Deadbeats that continue in our representation who unabashedly admit that they have not paid their taxes in years, you know who I mean.

  137. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    I believe that is the unstated intent.

    If we do not start standing up for our beliefs they ability to practice our Religion as we thought was protected will be gone shortly.
    The Devil always finds ways to make the most ludicrous suggestions seem logical.
    Pray for people in power to have clear minds and the ability to see the Devil at work.

  138. Avatar

    Carola Sury

    December 24, 2015 at 2:10 pm

    Tom Moe….I have a degree in criminology…and we studied the sexual abuse cases and murder of Aboriginal peoples that occurred under colonialization and christianization and I can tell you that no other organization outside of the Catholic and Anglican churches owes more in compensation to their victims of sexual and physical abuse at the hands of their pedophile priests than any other organization on this planet. The U.N. demanded that the Vatican pay the victims of sexual abuse the compensation that is owed to them calling them “crimes against humanity” and still they refuse to pay up. I do know that the Anglican churches in Vancouver sold many of their schools, churches and land to pay the compensation owing to their victims of abuse after they won a settlement in the hundreds of millions of dollars. So when you say “child molesters sneak through church filters more than they do anywhere else” that is just a load of rot. When you come up with any other organization other than the Catholic and Anglican churches owing more in compensation to their victims of sexual and physical abuse (and murder) please post it…because I’d sure like to know what those organizations are.

  139. Avatar

    Carola Sury

    December 24, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    They didn’t have to ‘sneak through church filters’ they hid behind god while committing their evil atrocious acts.

  140. Avatar

    Gary Karczewski

    December 24, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    I have been to France , Italy and Germany and I know this , no one is begging in the streets , Labor in Germany has a seat on the Board of directors in corporate . People get 6 weeks paid vacation . They said they work to live we live to work , hard to disagree .

  141. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 2:48 pm

    Rachel, can we presume you have no clue what mission is?
    You choose the mission. If it is evangelism, homeless shelters, disaster relief, it doesn’t matter. 100% goes to that mission.
    I’m sure that you can find fault with that but you really should understand the topic before you bash.

  142. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    Except that is politics and not religion. Her job is a government job that she is failing to perform. Are you thinking that if she became an atheist she would suddenly support gay marriage?

  143. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 3:00 pm

    Except that is a political position. She is taking a political position that is in conflict with her job. It is not like she would change her fear of homosexuality if she were to suddenly become atheist.

  144. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    Too bad your concept of missions is over a century old.

  145. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    It would be different if the religion bashing actually was thought out. Instead, it is an effort of finding the bizarre offender and making it to be the normal. Sadly, these people think it is ok to do this.

  146. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Yep cause all churches are alike. Makes sense to me unless I start thinking.

  147. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    December 24, 2015 at 3:19 pm

    Other than it isn’t a conspiracy you are right. Evidence please? In order for you to be right you would have to show how people did not choose religion on their own. Good luck with that.

  148. Avatar

    Aubrey Young

    December 24, 2015 at 3:44 pm

    Too busy building War Machines, bombs and bullets and not letting Big banks fail and then there is Wall Street for the Rich! Churches are for poor people and many very rich pastors who are spreading the word of a fictitious book!

  149. Avatar

    Marcus Words

    December 24, 2015 at 4:57 pm

    As an American, I agree completely.

  150. Avatar

    Bennie Guardell

    December 24, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    Your god is Mammon.

  151. Avatar

    Paul Wieland

    December 24, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    Thank you for voicing what I feel…

  152. Avatar

    Matt Buckshaw

    December 24, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    You say poverty can be wiped out? For how long? Should we give every family living in poverty enough money to live comfortably? Why would anyone work if they could live off the government and just do whatever they wanted all day? I have lived very poor and recently started a business where I am making very good money. I look back now after all my struggles and know I would never have gotten where I am today if it was not for the pain I went through. Everybody sees pain as a bad thing but it is a great motivator. If it wasn’t for rain you wouldn’t appreciate sunshine so much. As for the minister’s making millions? Jesus said the path to heaven for a rich man is narrow and the path to heaven for a wide man is wide. Something along those lines. There are good pastors and bad pastors. Any pastor that makes millions of dollars a year is going to have some issues when judgment day comes. Also I think the things on the graph that are red mean they are taxed like the pastors salary. Pastors are not exempt from taxes.

  153. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    Everything is backwards – the government first steals from Peter (citizens) to pay Paul – via tax credits! The world is one big ponzy scheme and everyone accepts it. All this would be a non issue if people were righteous and not vote for the best ‘mafia’ politician to steal for them!!

  154. Avatar

    Justin Darnell

    December 24, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    “One man’s Hurst is another man’s limo . “

  155. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    Jeff, you can’t lump all churches in that category. None of the churches are forcing you to be a member and it’s very clear none of the churches are controling you. One exception is Islam. Radical Islam is all about forcing conversion and control.

    The actual date of Jesus’s birthday is not clearly known but December 25th is as good as any day to celebrate it.

  156. Avatar


    December 24, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    Interesting this article takes the Mormon church as it’s prime example. The problem is they only bring up examples of tithing money which is used directly for the continued operations of the church. It isn’t meant to be used for charities. Hence why I can see the author is pointing out that only “0.7%” is going towards charities. There is a completely separate fund for that called fast offerings. The church brings in millions to this fund every year and 100% of it is used for charitable causes. Full time employees that work the warehouses, farms, ranches that produce the charitable supplies aren’t even paid with this money. The tithing money is used for salaries. Sounds to me like this author is picking and choosing facts and taking them out of context

  157. Avatar

    Dr ML Williams

    December 24, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    Sorta like pointing at an NBA player and claiming all ministers and churches are like that. Has everyone actually looked at the numbers for the average church and Pastors? Most Pastors are bivocational because they are not paid anything near enough to live on. The most I ever made as a full time Pastor was $21k a year with a doctorate degree and without full benefits. Oh, and guess where the money is cut from when people decrease their donations at Christmas time by an average of 50% to buy gifts and there is not enough to cover expenses like utilities? Most Pastors know the answer, the church cuts their pay.

    Likewise, if you are a NONprofit, it means you operate without making profits. Unless of course you are a labor union, then you can give tens of millions of your profits to democrat political campaigns and claim you are still a NONprofit. FYI, you do not pay income taxes in any business if you make ZERO profits. If it cost a for profit company 100 million dollars to earn 100 million dollars, your profit was zero so you had zero income to tax (A simple tax fact that too many tax law ignorant people don’t have a clue about.) Here’s an idea, how about an audit of the Federal government or the Fed? You will find 10 times more money being wasted easily. The average local run program that was federalized takes 5 dollars in local tax revenues to Washington spends 2 dollars to administer it and regulated it and sends back 3 dollars in funding with strings attached and burdensome regulations to the locals.

    Most full time Pastors work 60+ hours per week. They are often on call 24 hours a day. Their nights, weekends, and even holidays are never off. If a member of your congregation dies, you can count on at least 3+ days of round the clock care consoling the family, planning, assisting with funeral arrangements, and conducting the services. That is why thousands leave the pastorate yearly, because they learn it is a calling for little pay, not a career. Am I complaining? No way, because while the pay and benefits are minimal compared to other occupations, seeing lives changed for good is the best pay I have ever made. And besides, the retirement plan is out of this world.

  158. Avatar

    Kevin Ross

    December 24, 2015 at 9:24 pm

    You’re belief is fuzzy and cute. Church accomplishes perverted conversion by hanging food and shelter in front of the despaired. Wal-Mart looks like a liberal compaired to these criminals/Christians.

  159. Avatar

    Luna Lucifera

    December 24, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    As someone who was homeless for months, I dare anyone who agrees with this article to have the guts to depend completely on charities for their food for just one month, and then come back and reread this article. The charities can be either secular or faith based–whatever you can find. I garuntee once you do, you’ll come back fully disagreeing with this article’s “facts” on just how much aid churches give.

    Don’t sit here and argue it with me–it’ll only make you look like you don’t want to do it on the grounds that, deep down, you’re fully aware of the help they provide. Actually go out and do it. Live off of soup kitchens and food drives for a month. Then come back, and reassert honestly that this article’s right. You won’t be able to do it! Garunteed!

  160. Avatar


    December 25, 2015 at 1:58 am

    Wow! I have never seen a group of misinformed individuals as I do in reading some of these posts. As the financial officer for a small, rural church I find it hard to believe that you are lumping us all together. We certainly do not have our pastors living in mansions, flying in jets, or riding around in limos. Our church barely gets by on what we have, but we proudly do the Lord’s work in our community. If any of you care to get down off of your holy than thou throne come to our church & I’d be happy to prove it to you.

    Also am I the only one that finds it hard to believe that the Secular Policy Institute would come up with such off the wall numbers. They can crunch numbers a 100 different ways to Sunday until they come up with something that back’s their agenda. Hardly an objective organization.

  161. Avatar


    December 25, 2015 at 3:04 am

    On Christmas, you post this?
    This is the time of the year where atheists me a secularists come out in droves to attack the faithful…

    So you think that the government should profit from religion? That it should have an interest in religion? That it should have an incentive to support various religions for its gain? That it should have a cut of God’s tribute?

    Firstly, the government doesn’t “lose” money. It’s not the government’s money to loose. To properly phrase this nonsense, better say that the government has a further opportunity to fleece the masses.

    Then we get to the theological fact that the faithful would be paying tithes to a secular Godless entity. They would be idoltry. Giving to man what belongs to God.
    Taking God’s tribute and applying it to an entity that funds wars and abortion.

    It’s a stupid, Godless proposition posed by black hearted atheists unwittingly doing satan’s work. Attacking the children of God.

    Funny, no one complains when the government PAYS for the raising of mosques and supports public satanic masses though.
    But a Christian’s tithe?
    Attests and satanists are drooling for a cut.

  162. Avatar


    December 25, 2015 at 5:59 am

    And if you cut into the social services churches provide its going to cost us even more!

  163. Avatar


    December 25, 2015 at 6:38 am

    Jopublick – and prople here are afraid of Bernie Sanders, smh

  164. Avatar

    Colin Swan

    December 25, 2015 at 12:54 pm

    Germany under the Nazi’s. Apart from the hatred of jews it wasn’t a bad system. Only one to get out of the depression on its own

  165. Avatar


    December 25, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    Thank you for putting it so succinctly! For some reason, people in the US have difficulty seeing the light.

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  167. Avatar


    December 26, 2015 at 4:36 am

    Check out the U.N. Record of human rights violations around the world. Peace keepers have been accused of far worse crimes, including child rape and others repeatedly. Holding them out as an example of virtue is almost laughable.

  168. Avatar


    December 27, 2015 at 12:46 am

    Get over yourself, mate. You’re not fooling anyone. The gig is up. Time to walk in Jesus’s footsteps and stop sinning. “Give all of your belongings to the poor.”

  169. Avatar

    Vinman Wolverine

    December 27, 2015 at 3:45 am

    @Kit9 money that is given voluntarily…

  170. Avatar

    Bryan Westbrook

    December 27, 2015 at 11:47 am

    That’s what is commonly known as bullshit.

  171. Avatar


    December 27, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    Cut out private health insurance paid by taxpayers, to our politicians, get rid of our largest tax increase in history, obamacare, and keep islamic terrorists out of US and our country would be in a better state.

  172. Avatar


    December 27, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    Why would anyone want to increase taxes on any person or organization in order to continue to support the existence of a corrupt government? People labor under the very false impression that our government would actually do something productive with the money they get from churches when in fact it only provides more money to be wasted on porkbarrel programs and transfers money into the pockets of politicians and their banker cronies. We need to reduce the tax burden on everyone, not increase it on groups we selectively disagree with.

  173. Avatar

    Kelly Dowhower

    December 29, 2015 at 1:56 pm

    Let’s give it a go and see just what happens. And like the article said–you DID read the article, did you not–that compared to the Red Cross, and even Walmart, the church’s provide chump change, CHUMP!

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  175. Avatar


    January 4, 2016 at 9:30 pm

    black hearted atheists unwittingly doing satan’s work? No that would be Christians. They’ve been doing it since the beginning of religion. People in glass houses should not throw stones especially when the glass is so thin.

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  177. Avatar

    Paul Evans

    January 8, 2016 at 8:47 am

    and how much are unwanted catholic pregnancies costing welfare because condoms are banned?

  178. Avatar

    Paul Evans

    January 8, 2016 at 9:08 am

    Not true about tax spending ….property taxes are distributed differently than others, they are municipal and go to the operations of the city they are in. they are also based on the relative value of that property to others around it soif a church is all blinged up and is conspicuously wealthy, then its tax rate would be proportionally higher. that would keep the churches humble and help direct you donations where they outwardly to the needy and not inwardly to adorn the walls of its cathedrals.

    also a law governing the church’s taxes could stipulate that the money be used only for charitable services.

  179. Avatar

    Tom Moe

    January 8, 2016 at 5:21 pm

    Seriously, Paul. You are reaching beyond reality. People have a right to choose birth control or not without your approval.

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  181. Avatar

    Jesse Cox

    March 19, 2016 at 4:28 pm

    So rephrasing the title to what you’re actually saying: U.S. churches should have to pay $71 billion a year in taxes. They’re not costing us anything as they’re pretty much considered charities.

  182. Avatar

    Laurie Tudela

    March 20, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    you didn t read the article. He is using examples like the Mormon church who bring in billions of dollars of a year and only spend a small amount on charity. the rest pays for people’s lifestyles. Religious organizations whether be small or large SHOULD be held to the same standards as a 501c. It’s ridiculous the amount that some of them bring in and they DONT give back.

  183. Avatar

    Lorelei Kawchuk

    March 20, 2016 at 7:40 pm

    I’m seeing what was written in the article & Laurie’s comment in regards to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I’m sorry, but many such as her obviously do NOT have a clue about the Church & all of God’s work, which they do with the Tithing which is received! Actually, the same goes for the person who wrote the article, too!
    We do NOT broadcast all of the charitable & Lord’s work, which is done by the Lord’s Church! Much more of the Lord’s work is done than many may realize!
    The day will come when multitudes will be grateful for all of the work which the LDS Church does perform with its donations! Sad that many will NOT realize it until after they have passed from this mortal life to beyond the grave!

  184. Avatar

    Lorelei Kawchuk

    March 20, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    The person who wrote this article needs to learn about the important work that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints does! They obviously don’t have a clue how much of God’s work is done by the Church! There will come a day when they will come to realize, bbut the sad thing for them mmay be that they will probably not acknowledge all of it until they have passed from this mortal life to the place beyond the grave!
    They should do some real research into what is done with the Lord’s tithing before they continue to throw stones at the LDS Church!

  185. Avatar

    Steve Jones

    March 21, 2016 at 8:06 am

    Christians have been seving for centuries. And you post shows your lack of knowledge. Haven’t you ever heard of Protestantism? You know, the group of Christians that broke ties with the Catholic Church 500 years ago? Stop lumping us together and get your facts straight. Additionally, the main role of the church is to share the gospe,l not be just another charity. We do charitable act but not to sustain us but to be a light in a dark world, hence this website.

  186. Avatar


    March 21, 2016 at 11:19 am

    No possibility that this group has a bias against religion. Churches do such good work. Meanwhile, the NFL remains nonprofit. Yeah, the church is such a problem? lol

  187. Avatar

    Steve Hahny

    March 22, 2016 at 9:31 am

    I think you should check wit the LDS church before assuming anything, this article is purely coming from Satan and his cronies.

  188. Avatar


    March 22, 2016 at 12:01 pm

    Churches need to start paying taxes like everybody else, they nned to to that now, they cant keeping living off everyone.

  189. Avatar


    March 22, 2016 at 1:49 pm

    Easy solution: if you want to believe Bronze Age fairytales, do it on your own dime. If it’s important to you, you find the means (maybe your invisible friend can loan it to you). Either way, the rest of us shouldn’t need to pay for your anachronistic hobby.

  190. Avatar

    Zehner Hoffman

    March 23, 2016 at 7:04 am

    Fascinating how the left always believes money that is not theirs ought to go to government for redistribution.

  191. Avatar

    Pray To Dog

    March 23, 2016 at 2:09 pm

    ….and the NFL. Unless 75% of their earnings are going to help the community outside of their organization, they should be paying taxes….meanwhile all of us unpaid volunteers should be able to write off all the volunteer hours we put in…SMH.

  192. Avatar


    August 13, 2016 at 7:08 pm

    That is ss wrong as you can get

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  195. Avatar


    August 21, 2016 at 12:16 pm

    Since when is “not robbing an organization” equivalent to “subsidizing an organization”?

  196. Pingback: U.S. Religious Organizations Are Now Costing Taxpayers $71 Billion a Year

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  199. Avatar


    April 18, 2017 at 6:46 am

    I tried attending a Baptist church a few years ago. They give you a book of payment tickets, much like the book you get for a car payment. You tear out each coupon on Sunday with your payment. Your name is prominently displayed on his ticket and it is placed face up so the others can see what you gave. They require you to donate 10% of your income as a tithe. So if your income is $60K, they want $6K . There are ATM’s in the lobby if you don’t carry cash. And the congregation is informed if you gave less. And you are called out in front of everybody….In the meantime, the pastor lives in a mansion, filled with expensive stuff, beautiful furniture, etc,, drives a Benz and his lovely wife has a Lexus. Needless to say, I only went there about 6 times. Politics reign supreme in there, the old heads get together and do what they wish, up to and concluding firing the preacher. A preacher walked up to me to ask if I had a “church” home. I said yes my church is Bedside Baptist.

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    Really? This bogus report still going? First off, churches are the only places where giving is entirely your choice. Second, I don’t know what church you attended Beverly, but that sure isn’t like any church I ever know. Third, you can’t measure tax based upon potential. In that case we are losing billions based upon the potential of taxing breathing. Fourth, churches are one group of non profits. The CEO of a nearby hospital is making $4 million a year. The average church doesn’t have an income of the average person. It is beyond logic to imply that they could be paying their staff more than they take in.

  202. Pingback: U.S. churches are now costing taxpayers $71 billion a year – Barnhard Blog

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  204. Pingback: The Importance of Studying Church | Speaking the Truth in Love

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    June 27, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    It’s about time: actually past time to tax them; the majority of them are major, corporate businesses after all. Look at the structures they build and the money they take in; then look at the parishioners and congregation members and the poor and the starving…

  220. Pingback: If you want to add an extra $71 billion to the economy, start taxing churches – DeadState | Barbary Alan's Newsfeed

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  226. Pingback: If you want to add an extra $71 billion to the economy, start taxing churches | It's Lit BRO

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    Bob Kutz

    April 17, 2018 at 2:47 pm

    Or . . . for an alternative viewpoint; the Government is costing Churches about a trillion dollars a years.

    You see, the government has no business favoring the religion of human secularism.

    The government, as constituted, has no business taking money from one person for the purpose of giving it to someone else who is in need. There is no possible way to make that right.

    That is the business of the Church. If you are an atheist or an agnostic, you cannot make the claim that government gets to play the role of benefactor. I don’t even know where a real atheist would get a strong sense of the difference between right and wrong.

    In short; the government needs to extricate itself from charitable works, which are clearly outside the prerogative of providing justice and a common defense.

    Then, with all the money people don’t have to give to their government, the Churches will have substantially more revenue with which to help the needy.


  231. Avatar

    Jeff Dwyer

    October 23, 2018 at 5:28 pm

    Trump and his racist thugs claim to worry about the cost of immigrants. But then shysters like Osteen steal $70 billion a year from American citizens, several times the cost of helping immigrants get started. And immigrants inevitably get jobs, start businesses, and pay taxes, unlike this crook and the rest of the evangelical shysters, who provide nothing for America.

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    November 3, 2018 at 10:57 pm

    Absolutely correct.

    In addition, the regulation of ALL so-called “non profit” organizations should be tightened. As it stands, a NPO is a license to print salary and benefits for the administrators,that is a “license to steal”. Should you ask, I am a tax lawyer.

  233. Avatar


    March 31, 2019 at 4:23 am

    I believe mega and prosperity gospel churches should be taxed. Mainstream churches aren’t really thriving these days.

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    Jonny Chepe

    April 1, 2019 at 2:14 pm

    Anyone that believes sending $71 billion to the government for redistribution to help the needy makes sense is a fkcking moron. Besides, the Secular Policy Institute is an atheist organization. What possible agenda could they have against churches?

  235. Avatar

    Alicia C Simpson

    August 18, 2019 at 9:23 am

    This article is almost completely false. A few very large congregations would end up paying a considerable amount in taxes, but the huge majority of congregations would not pay much of anything in taxes if they lost their charity status.

    First, unlike other charities, if churches were merely held to the standards of other non-profit agencies they would not pay much in taxes anyway. Paying pastors and maintaining buildings, which are the major expenditures would still qualify as giving to charity because of the huge number of functions the pastor and buildings support.

    There are only two taxes that churches don’t pay: property taxes and sales taxes. In terms of property tax, it is true that if the property were taxed it would generate considerable income, however 90% of all churches in the US would not be able to pay it and would be forced to close. Since most people who considered buying the property would not really want to have a church-like building, they would deduct the cost of tearing the building down from the purchase price. Municipalities would never be able to collect the property tax from the sale.
    As for sales tax, any estimate is almost certainly off by about 1/3rd since this is the value of the good purchased by churches that are paid by congregants without getting the sales tax waved.

    The real amount that states and municipalities are losing is closer to $7.1 billion than 71 billion and they would lose that much from people who support churches.

    In any event, the Supreme Court has ruled that the power to tax is the power to control, therefore, according to their ruling, taxing churches would be a violation of the 1st amendment of the constitution of the United States.

    So this whole article and my response is moot.

  236. Avatar

    Alicia C Simpson

    August 18, 2019 at 9:26 am

    All employees of all churches have to pay federal income tax. Losing their charity status would not bring very much additional revenue to the Federal government, certainly no where near what the article suggests. At the federal level you are just talking about corporate income taxes. Well most churches do not make any taxable income at all.

    The article is based on false assumptions.

    Note: I have worded as a bookkeeper/accountant for churches and have a degree in business administration/accounting.

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    In Fiscal Year 2016, the most recent year for which a complete set of data is available, SNAP: Assisted approximately 44 million beneficiaries. Cost $71 billion, or 2 percent of the federal budget. Averaged $124 per month (or $31 per week) per person in benefits.

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