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As tithing drops, churches keeping more money for internal needs

from State Journal-Register

Tithing to U.S. Protestant churches as a percentage of income is at its lowest level in at least 41 years, according to a recent report, and churches are keeping a greater share of those donations for their own needs. Parishioners gave about 2.38 percent of their income to their church, according to “The State of Church Giving through 2009,” a new report released last month by Empty Tomb Inc., a Christian research agency in Champaign. Just over 2 percent of income went toward congregational finances, such as operating costs and building expenses. Only 0.34 percent of parishioner income went to what Empty Tomb calls “benevolences,” such as charities and seminary training beyond the four walls of the church. more


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