Church Income


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When you think about the potential for profit in the Christian church, the numbers can be quite staggering. 75% of the American population is Christian, and the bible and churches teach that individuals should tithe 10% of their total income to the church. If you estimate that 200 million individuals (66% of American population) tithe to the church one hundred dollars per year (that’s a meager 1% of a relatively small 10,000 dollar per year income), the total income for the Christian church in the united states alone would be 30 billion dollars per year. Imagine how much they are making if people give the full %10. The question to ask is how much of that money is going toward building churches, promoting and advertising those churches, paying preachers and employees, promoting political campaigns, and managing internal affairs, and how much of it is actually supporting the greater good of society? I can’t seem to find any real records or statistics on this 🙁

Speaking of Tithing, I have a question: since the United States is a Christian nation, (or at least that’s what many Christians want us to believe) and the Christian religion states that we should tithe %10 of our income to the greater good, doesn’t it make sense that the United States should be tithing %10 of its gross national product to the greater good of the world? Why does it seem like the most devoted Christians in the US are the ones who are most opposed to foreign aid? Doesn’t that seem kinda backward?

7 thoughts on “Church Income”

  1. As a finance guy, I’m a little weary of your statistics. You say that the church has an insane gross income, but gross income is a very poor indication of the financials of a church. Churches need to service their costs, like electricity and building expenses, and of course staff. I am interested in knowing the net income of the average church, which like you I cannot find, which is very frustrating.

    1. Yeah, that’s a good point, and I’m weary of them too since they’re not based on any real data.
      The building expenses thing is also a big issue for me that I’ve never mentioned. Same issue I have with public education: they build these buildings and buy supplies, but then are only used 180 days a year for half the day. Churches are even worse. Churches only seem to be active on Sundays and sit vacant most of the rest of the week. They hold meetings and stuff during the week, but often those meetings could have just as easily been done in someone’s living room (or in an unused public school room), saving all those building expenses.

  2. Here’s a question for you. How much tax revenue would be generated at the local, state and federal levels if the tax-exemption for churches was eliminated?

    1. Hey

      Just wondering if you got anywhere with this question elsewhere. I’ve been trying to find some statistics about this but there doesn’t seem to be anything reliable out there- only things like “up to $1000 per family”.
      It would be really interesting to compare the tax revenue from all religious institutions that the government could have if the exemption was revoked, with things like the research and development budget (mars missions, quantum information, medicine etc.).

      1. Very interesting indeed. It seems like someone would have done some real research on this somewhere, but I don’t know where to look.

  3. Sory I’m medson chengula from tumaini University Iringa, Studing theological study (BD) I would like to ask you question and my question is _ Why Most of African church have low income? and what are the ways of Increasing income in the church? Especially Tanzania. Reply through my email. Thanks a lot.

    1. The best way would be for them to embrace logic and reject faith and spirits. Once you start thinking logically, it’s not hard to look at real-world cause-and-effect to figure out how to reach your goals.

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