I think charitable work should get a tax break. To this end, we have 501(c)(3)
organizations (charities) that receive tax-favored status. As individuals, we
receive tax deductions for contributions to these charitable organizations.
But, anyone who works for one of these organizations does so in the same way
that they would in any taxable organization. That is the way the clergy of a
church should be treated -- at the very least. That is if, of course, the
church in question can be shown as providing charitable works. I am not
convinced that the primary function of churches is charitable work.
As Charles Dickens once said "that what such people miscall their religion,
is a vent for their bad humours and arrogance." People of the cloth or not,
we all have our bad humours and arrogance. Such behavior is not isolated to the
religiously affiliated, but is a curse of the entire human race.
It would be a non issue if the ministers were living in average housing. But,
when some of these "people of the cloth" live in tax exempt luxury,
their greed and selfishness ruin it for everyone.
Here says:"I am positive anti-religious people will not be
satisfied until all income and assets of all formal religions are taxable and
the churches are treated as any Wall Street corporation."---If churches are going to act like mega-wall Street corporations, they
should be treated like wall street corporations.
@David - I believe you have misunderstood the nature of this case. This case
has no bearing on LDS missionaries housing or the general tax exempt status of
churches. Since LDS missionaries are not paid clergy this decision has no
bearing on them or their housing.In faith traditions with paid
clergy, clergy persons often receive two types of income - a salary and housing
or a housing allowance. Many churches own parsonages, their ministers live in
them rent free. If they don't own a parsonage, churches often pay a
housing allowance. Both a rent free parsonage and a housing allowance are forms
of income but the value of this housing or housing allowance has been tax exempt
but the clergy person's salary was taxable. A comparable
example is an employee who drives a company car. Personal miles driven on the
company care are considered a form of taxable income and the employee must pay
taxes on the value of that mileage (commuting from home to work is considered
personal use). Should clergy persons receive a tax break no other employee
"I wonder if the LDS Church receives a tax exemption for the rental units
used to house missionaries."Missionaries do some good
humanitarian work. Feeding and clothing the poor is one thing. Tax breaks to
spread a religion in the US and around the world is NOT grounds for tax
exemption.Lets get rid of ALL tax breaks, religious or not.
I find it interesting that the US is now trying to eliminate its basis and
connection to religion while the current President of China has publicly
indicated that many of the woes that impact China might be fixed by a greater
focus on religious freedom in that country. Wonder which one is "right"?
Why should they be exempt? We aren't. As long as they are making an
income, pay up
I am positive anti-religious people will not be satisfied until all income and
assets of all formal religions are taxable and the churches are treated as any
Wall Street corporation.I am also certain they will not be happy
till all people everywhere, religious or not, will be forced to do things that
violate their conscience in the name of political correctness.I am
also convinced they won't be happy till formal religion no longer exists.
But then what kind of world would we have? That would be truly and utterly
hopeless. But fortunately we live in the end of times, when the
Savior's coming is near. His Church is moving forward at greater strides
And how are the religious zealots going to continue to try and justify such
religious favoritism as this unconstitutional tax exemption?The
hegemony of religion MUST end in this world!
Government is actively, aggressively searching for ways to increase revenue to
the treasury. More and more tax exemptions will be eliminated.I
wonder if the LDS Church receives a tax exemption for the rental units used to
house missionaries. If this tax exemption goes away its effects will be
far-reaching.I hope the courts and the government will recognize the
immeasurable good that religious groups and non-profits perform for others that
government simply cannot match. It would be a mistake to begin taxing religious