Start A Tax or Start A Church…

I have to confess: I’m a little jealous of the business model of churches.  I know, they got in early so they got the really plum model, the one all businesses have been trying to re-create ever since.  Still, they’ve got it pretty sweet…

People voluntarily stop by the retail outlets (aka, “church”) once a week to make another payment on the installment plan in an effort to acquire a “product” the church never has to actually produce (immortality).

How much does their product cost?  They never say, at least not in absolute terms but 10% seems to be the going rate.  Now, that’s 10% of the gross, not the net and don’t cheat!  (God will know.  He knows everything…)

Man, what a great racket…

Even better, it’s common for churches to try and get their front-line employees to take a vow of poverty.  Just imagine owning a business in which the employees ask you to pay them as little as possible.  Think of what that does for the bottom line.


Still, I don’t think it’s “business model envy” that leads me to the position that it’s time Americans reconsider our stance on taxing churches.  Now, I’m only talking about property tax, here.  Churches like to pretend they use the donations collected to do “good works” around the world.  But they keep a lot of that money.

I’m ok with letting churches write-off what they don’t keep, that is, whatever actually gets used for “good works”.  It’s not the attack on religion it may seem.  It’s more like “holding them accountable”.  If you collect money on the premise that you’re going to do “good works” and then buy a shiny golden calf…er…cross with Jesus hanging on it (or any other kind of idol…) well, you’ve sort of collected money under false pretenses, haven’t you?

The state could use the money the churches are hoarding and even JESUS said, “Grant unto Caesar that which is Caesars”…

…failing that, I’d like to announce the formation of my brand new church, The Church of Universal Understanding!  The “understanding” of course, is that you send the Church of Universal Understanding – me – money.  I’ll use it for “good works”.  Well, most of it.  Ok a lot of it.  Well, some, for sure.  Er…define “good works”.

Don’t I need someplace to minister to my flock?  Shouldn’t it be someplace that glorifies the Lord?  I mean, you can’t ask the Holy Father to sit his Holy Butt on an unheated toilet seat, can you?  More, I’ve heard He really gets into a “smiting” mood if He’s asked to wash His Holy Hands under anything less than solid gold fixtures.

So, please…keep sending those tax-free donations.  The very moment my new, 32,000 square foot Palace-that-Glorifies-the-Lord-but-I-get-to-live-in  is complete, we can get some really “good works” done…

One thought on “Start A Tax or Start A Church…

  1. You are absolutely right. We started a church in September of 2009 and we do get a lot of tax breaks and it has shown me how that can easily be abused. I don’t know how you would measure “good works” as you pointed out in your blog it seem rather ambiguous. Nevertheless, when churches are “pimping” out their facility / staff they have seemed to drift from the original intention.


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