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Why are American Churches Getting a $71 Billion Tax Break Each Year?

The home in the photo is the $1.75 million mansion of the Reverend Randy White, the former head pastor of Without Walls International Church in Tampa, Florida. While some people may be bothered by the fact that there are pastors who live in multimillion dollar homes, this is old news to most.

But here is what should bother you about these expensive homes: You are helping to pay for them! You pay for them indirectly, the same way local, state, and federal governments in the United States subsidize religion—to the tune of about $71 billion every year.

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Why are churches tax-exempt and not treated like the private clubs that they are?

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Why are corporations getting Trillions in tax breaks

and why are they getting subsidies on top of billions in earnings?

Like GE that paid ZERO in Taxes yet was one of the biggest earners.

Before you start picking on churches which is a tine percentage of what wall street and the corporations get. Why don't we go after the ones that get the most for nothing!

Why the church doesn't pay taxes according to Jesus...

Matthew 17:24
When they had come to Capernaum,those who received the temple tax came to Peter and said, “Does your Teacher not pay the temple tax?”

25 He said, “Yes.”

And when he had come into the house, Jesus anticipated him, saying, “What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take customs or taxes, from their sons or from strangers?”

26 Peter said to Him, “From strangers.”

Jesus said to him, “Then the sons are free."

27 Nevertheless, lest we offend them, go to the sea, cast in a hook, and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth, you will find a piece of money: take that and give it to them for Me and you.”

So, the question is if the "sons of the kings of the earth" (NOT the King of Heaven) do not pay the tax, then what does that make the church?

This post reveals your prejudice

Against churches. Churches receive the same tax breaks as all other 501c3 charitable or non-profit organizations.

Also, clubs like the republican party or cub scouts also qualify as tax exempt. So what's your problem again?

Ron Paul - Intellectual hero

The last time I attended church,

I asked the preacher if his small church pays taxes. He said yes. The reason as I understood it is so he can be free to talk politics from the pulpit. I think churches who have tax exempt status are not allowed to engage in political speech. If they do, they lose it.

The "Church" is a form of

The "Church" is a form of government, even as defined in Black's law dictionary. It is not possible for a preacher to give a sermon of the Bible without engaging in political speech, unless of course he turns his interpretation of the Bible into stories of mystery and magic, miracles and mayhem....if the preacher preaches the intent of the Bible, he MUST engage in political speech. The Church, His Church, is a form of government, it is a body politic.

"Ehhh, What's ups Doc?" B.Bunny "Scwewy Wabbit!"E. Fudd
People's Awareness Coalition: Deprogramming Sequence

If any group of people get a tax break

let 'em. There should be no income tax, so if religious organizations get them, let them have them. I'm not religious, but I don't care if any group of people are tax-free. It's just a step towards everybody being tax-free.


Everyone knows that everyones money REALLY belongs to the state and how dare anyone not be looted for the state-church. Save your envy for the nonelected bankster crats fleecing us who pay zero taxes and tax exempt "foundations" that conspire against us and contribute to our enslavement. These churches receive VOLUNTARY, already taxed contributions and fulfill the spiritual needs of their members. Your state worship is showing, "secular" is a myth, it's ALL religion.


Some of you guys are funny! Paul people are the best at studying the facts but some didn't on this one. So many think the pastors don't pay taxes. Pastors and all employees of the church pay taxes like everyone else on their income. It is the church and the expenses to run it that are not taxed. Just say the church brings in 10k in a month and the pastors salary is 2k. He is taxed on that and the 8k may go to the building/loan payment, programs for children, helping the needy, utility bills, etc...the 8k isn't taxed. If the pastor is living high on the hog it's because the people are giving it and his salary is very high, but he is taxed on it.

The church itself is considered a non-profit organization like many other things are. Even a satanic church gets the same tax exemption! Look up the list of non-profit organizations there are, the churches are only one of hundreds.

True churches pre-date the constitution and are non-taxable,

not tax-exempt. Only Government 501c3 corporations are tax-exempt as they are creatures of the state, thus have to follow state rules. True churches are not 501c3 and are not under state jurisdiction.
People are confused about what a church is. 99% of those buildings you see in your town are non-profit businesses not churches.

A church can be misguided

on its relationship to the state and still be a true church.

The church itself is tax exempt...

...because it is not a business, it's a non-profit organization. HOWEVER, those who receive a wage/salary like the pastor and others do pay the same taxes as everyone else. Whomever decides these salaries on the extravagant living some pastors have is wrong. The people who continue to give the church their hard earned money are deceived and are being cheated. I saw this in the past. Some people become so weirded out by these "men of God" that they have even given their cars to them. The people that are giving to the church are the ones making the "false pastors" rich.

Churches are not only getting tax breaks...

but some of them are getting government money. The best way to stop the bleeding heart clergy from preaching social justice (Communism) is to tax the hell out of them.

Minnesota Mary

Liberty......= "tax the hell out of them"

wow... I guess all clergy are "comunists" and must be enslaved...

I guess thats Liberty ehh?


Corporation XYZ manufactures

Corporation XYZ manufactures and sells widgets. XYZ last year, after expenses, lost $2. Corporation XYZ will pay $0 in taxes because for the tax year they were NON PROFITABLE. In the years that XYZ makes a profit they will lose their NON PROFITABLE STATUS and be liable for taxes.

"Ehhh, What's ups Doc?" B.Bunny "Scwewy Wabbit!"E. Fudd
People's Awareness Coalition: Deprogramming Sequence

The Libert Movement FAILS When We Aren't Consistant


The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence[note 1] and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.

Not one person has answered the question as to why Churches have special tax exemptions when taxes "shall be uniform throughout the United States".

Never mind the what the First Amendment says.

How many churches paid

import duties and that sort of thing? None. Even if the amount of those duties were uniform, churches still didn't pay tariffs because they didn't import goods.

Those who receive a wage/salary...

...in the church, such as the pastors, pay the same taxes everyone else does. It is the people who are giving to the church being ripped off. The church building itself isn't taxed.

Yeah, we wouldn't want a little thing like FREEDOM getting in

the way, especially if it concerned the FIRST amendment.

Galatians 5:1
It is for FREEDOM that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.


All taxation is unethically premised upon anti-voluntary coercion and should be abolished

This isn't hard

Low or no taxes = a good thing.

This question...

...is for the founders.

Charles Jackson
http://MathIsChristian.wordpress.com Also, read Ron Paul's original staff economist Gary North at http://teapartyeconomist.com/

Good start now if we could

Good start now if we could just get rid of the rest of the taxes for everyone...

Any "church" that is registered

with the government to receive a tax exemption is subject to government. The pastors who head these churches and live like kings off the donations and tithes of there ignorant followers are not ministers of truth and are crooked to the core. But I don't agree that WE are helping to fund these apostles of filthy lucre by there tax exempt status. To me a tax exemption is not a subsidy. And although the "church" may be tax exempt the so called pastors do have to pay income tax on their salary.


I was trying to think of how to respond to this and your response was the newest one. I need not go any further.

I am a Christian and this has always been a huge problem for me. It seems to me you're right. If any church has any conflict of interest, they are disqualified. If they accept some special status from the government, it only proves that they will fall into line and be good vehicles for government-approved doctrine (rhetoric). It will compromise their message. Professional pastors are already compromised by their job insecurity. So I agree, crooked to the core. Well said.

*edit* Btw, I don't think the churches should be taxed, or the pastors. I don't think anyone should be taxed on income or donations. I guess my point is that I'd prefer to be blameless and be subject to the same taxes as anyone else for conscience sake.

John F

The pastors and all...

who do work in the church and receive a paycheck pay the same taxes as everyone else. It is the people giving to the church that are being ripped off if the pastor receives a huge salary to afford living in luxury. Many are deceived in thinking the more they give, the more God will give them back. They are told this message over and over. I've seen some give their cars to the pastors in the past. Where I go now is not like that.

Bad article

Two things:

1) There is no way that a lack of taxation could be defined as a "subsidy". Letting a person or organization keep their own money has no effect on others. Calling it a "subsidy" shows the bankrupt liberal thinking: everything belongs to the State, and what you get to keep is a "subsidy". Balderdash!

2) A person could react two ways when presented with the situation where another person is not taxed while they themselves are taxed:

a) "It's not fair! Since I pay taxes, that other person should pay taxes too!"

b) "It's great that a person isn't paying taxes. Now, let's get to work lowering MY taxes!"

A freedom-loving person always picks b.


Many of these churches use their tax free situation to hoard cash and purchase property, etc. They have an unfair advantage. They help subvert the concept of a free market. Many also use their churches as a political pulpit.


freetoroam - I didn't know hoarding cash and purchasing property were crimes. And, oh my gosh! They exercise their freedom of speech and conscience by speaking about political issues in front of their assemblies!

This means they must be taxed! (whiny voice)It's not faaair!!

Your way of thinking does not increase liberty. It only shows envy and leads to everyone being equally taxed at a high rate. There's always going to be some group that thinks that somebody else is getting a better deal than them. And rather than trying to get the same good deal, envy drives them to apply their own bad deal onto the other group. Very destructive thinking.

It has NOTHING to do with "envy"! LOL!

Not quite sure why you like to beat that dead horse.

They are private clubs and Nothing more.

But I'm just envious I guess! LOL

It isn't a private club. You can go anytime you want.

Churches are there for those who don't have any money too. Stop being a flaming bigot.

Galatians 5:1
It is for FREEDOM that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.