I’m a Mormon, So…

I’m a Mormon, so I pay tithing.

The Bible indicates that God’s people followed the law of tithing anciently; through modern prophets, God restored this law once again to bless His children. To fulfill this commandment, Church members give one-tenth of their income to the Lord through His Church. These funds are used to build up the Church and further the work of the Lord throughout the world.

One of the blessings of membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the privilege of paying tithing. This privilege is a double blessing. By paying tithing, Church members show their gratitude to God for their blessings and their resolve to trust in the Lord rather than in material things. They also help further the work of the Lord in the earth, blessing others of God’s children with the opportunity to learn of Him and grow in the gospel.

LDS Gospel Topics, “Tithing

Tithing toward the LDS Church is understood to be 10% of one’s income; often termed increase. This amount is given to a member of one’s bishopric who then processes it through the executive secretary. The funds are ultimately processed at LDS Church headquarters and its usage is determined by a “council… comprised of the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and the Presiding Bishopric” (“Tithing“).

Tithing funds are always used for the Lord’s purposes—to build and maintain temples and meetinghouses, to sustain missionary work, to educate Church members, and to carry on the work of the Lord throughout the world.

LDS Gospel Topics, “Tithing

In these modern times, tithing may also be paid with direct deposit.

Payment of a full tithe is one requirement members must meet in order to be considered for a temple recommend -meaning, the ability to attend one of the sacred temples of the LDS church. Temples are different than meetinghouses and have specific, eternal ordinances performed therein.

Besides discussing tithing at a temple recommend interview; every year, families meet with their bishop for Tithing Declaration. Recent news release terms this as “primarily a learning experience — especially for children and youth — and an opportunity for Latter-day Saints to declare their tithing faithfulness” (LDS Newsroom).

©LDS Media Library

Some members take the 10% of one’s increase rule very seriously and donate from the gross amount earned from a paycheck. Most seem to opt for 10% of what’s deposited after taxes. Those without specific income may choose service activities, or supporting youth or ward activities as needed (in the past, early LDS Church members would literally give their bishop part of a herd of cattle or measure of flour, etc.). Tithing is between you, the Lord, and your bishop.

©LDS Media Library

©2022 Chel Owens

……

We Mormons are officially members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and are to drop any name but that. Since many recognize the nickname of ‘Mormon’ and it works with the alliteration so well, however, I will use the term.

My other note is that I will keep to official doctrinal practices. I will add my own application of them, especially in response to comments.

My final note is that I LOVE discussing anything I write. Don’t be rude, obviously, but any and all queries or responses are welcome.

My final note beyond the final note is that I do not seek to convert anyone. I am motivated by forming connections, answering curiosity, and straightening pictures. So, you’re safe.

46 thoughts on “I’m a Mormon, So…

  1. RuthScribbles November 7, 2022 / 10:19 am

    What about folks who exist paycheck to paycheck through no fault of their own?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:35 pm

      Great question! We are encouraged to pay tithing first, savings next, fixed costs after that, and then look where we can spend more frugally in the areas that follow.

      The LDS Church has manuals, classes, etc. on money management.

      Whether here or there or in-between, members can speak with their bishop if they need assistance. The bishop encourages asking family first and then he will assist with what’s needed -with prayer and resources like The Bishop’s Storehouse (free groceries) and job placement programs (like, at Deseret Industries, the LDS Church’s Goodwill store).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. robbiesinspiration November 7, 2022 / 11:00 am

    Hi Chel, tithes are common in a lot of Christian churches. It was certainly a part of being Catholic and my sister pays tithes to her church which is a more modern one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:36 pm

      I’ve heard of collections and voluntary donations. Are those others ones that say a certain amount, like the 10%?

      Like

  3. Nope, Not Pam November 7, 2022 / 12:10 pm

    The Vatican is the richest country on earth. It doesn’t require all the money it obtains in my opinion and I doubt it filters through to those in need. So I wonder if this makes it a business rather than a faith. And I too wonder about the expense of living. It’s going up rapidly, what happens if you simply can’t afford to loose that much income.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:39 pm

      I’m just answering these, but see what I said to Ruth. We are very much encouraged to live within our means and still save for future expenses.

      If one looks over everything, speaks with his/her bishop about it, and still can’t make things work; the bishop is authorized to help with free groceries from The Storehouse or financial support thanks to Fast Offerings or with job training opportunities.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Lesleykluchin November 7, 2022 / 12:13 pm

    I know a lot of churches require this. In my faith faith, Judaism we don’t. The Old Testament refers to tithe in regards to a percentage of food so poor communities would not starve, and in Sunday School, there was always a Tsedaka.box. (A charity box) to give to the poor. But I never paid anything to the Temple. However, since education is key in my faith, most Temples have schools attached. If those schools are built or expanded members are given an opportunity to donate to the education fund. But it is not required.
    I never had to pay or was asked to pay anything to go to worship or take part in religious events.

    If I wanted to send my children to the nursery program,or elementary program then like most pre schools or regular private schools, there is a charge but that pays for qualified certified teachers, not for the Temple. Trust me, When it comes to education Jews require even preschool teachers to have their masters in early childhood education. I know this because I taught in a Hebrew Day School when my oldest was little and I was required not only to be certified in early childhood education and elementary education but also to have a masters in early childhood ).

    Any donations were a choice. PLUS, rather than giving to the Temple, the temple gave to me a scholarship when I was a divorced single mother and wanted my child to go to the preschool. So giving a percentage to a religious institution is rather foreign to me. I don’t really get that concept.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lesleykluchin November 7, 2022 / 2:24 pm

      Chelsea I didn’t mean to sound like I was putting down any of the faiths who require a percentage of their income. I was Just stating that I don’t fully understand the concept. I’d rather give that money directly to the poor or whatever foundations help those in need. However, I am currently recovering from surgery and am on pain medication and therefore if I came across in any way that might hurt your feelings I did not mean to offend you. Any faith that brings comfort to its participants is fine with me. I think faith can be a beautiful thing. I just like to give charity directly to where I know it’s personally needed. For instance, I buy turkeys and food supplies and give directly to families in crises. My grandchildren and son go directly to their homes. That way you know those people get the meals.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:45 pm

        Oh, I wasn’t offended. I understood your point.

        Things are more open than people realize. Since it’s between you and G-d then you can certainly count personal, direct donations if you feel that meets your end of the covenant.

        Like

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:43 pm

      This sounds perfect. I love the community of faith helping in so many aspects and then being helped.

      Paying tithing is not required to attend services or participate -for one thing, it’s a private matter between you and the bishop and G-d. You can’t attend the temples -but, even then, if you truly feel you’re a full tithe payer, you can say such and receive a temple recommend.

      Like

      • Lesleykluchin November 8, 2022 / 1:18 pm

        Thanks for the information. I appreciate it. Faith comes naturally to me. Religion is more of a comforting tradition. But over the years I pick and choose how I want to participate G-d is always there. Religion can changes with the times or stagnates in a time period. Still the community aspect of it can often feel like a family.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. obbverse November 7, 2022 / 12:56 pm

    Better not put my ten percents worth in on this debate Chel.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Tippy Gnu November 7, 2022 / 2:31 pm

    I might be willing to go with 10% after taxes and basic living expenses. But I would scour the Bible for loopholes, to see what else I could get out of. And that would give me an incentive to study the Bible.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Tippy Gnu November 8, 2022 / 6:28 am

        I’m not sure. Something tells me I would not be invited to those sacred temples.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 7:43 am

          Ha ha. It’s more of a “go if *you* feel worthy” thing with the encouragement to strive for that goal.

          Liked by 1 person

  7. TanGental November 7, 2022 / 3:09 pm

    I suppose I self tithe. 10% of my income goes to charity. But to things like reducing our carbon outputs, clean air, eradication of disease, educating women and those excluded… not the promotion of any religion; that I cannot understand. But each to their own.

    Liked by 1 person

        • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 7:41 am

          😀 Sorry. I was offering some snark. I don’t literally see it that way.

          Like

          • TanGental November 8, 2022 / 7:50 am

            oops; the flat nature of WP fooled me; snark away! I’ll vote with the turkeys

            Liked by 1 person

  8. I also was raised to follow tithing. At one time it would help with the Pastor’s needs. Once a month there would also be a Special Sunday devoted to raising funds for Missionaires overseas.
    I do not tithe at the moment for I do not attend any local church.
    The concept of tithing is one that people seem to balk at. I believe it is because many televangelists have spoiled the true message of the Gospel. They see all the money that looks like it goes to the televangelists life style.
    My best friend is Mormon, I know beyond a shadow of doubt how the local missionairies serve the community without any renumeration! I do stand in awe of how they never grumble or complain. They serve anyone who asks for help, even when they are not members of the local congregation!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:49 pm

      I love having tithes -or ‘tithes’ as you described- go to the needs. The LDS Church is very clear that tithing doesn’t line a televangelist’s pockets or even pay for business investments; I appreciate the transparency.

      And yeah… service is a big thing. We’re a little obsessive about serving. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Matt November 7, 2022 / 3:50 pm

    Can’t afford a 10% of my income tithe nor an additional 10% for 401k…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 7, 2022 / 11:51 pm

      You’d be surprised. We have been blessed at many times for making the sacrifice. It usually doesn’t make sense on paper but works out anyway.

      Like

        • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 7:40 am

          Ah. Several times, literally with money when we needed it. Most times, with things like food at Thanksgiving or meals brought in or things on sale.

          Like

  10. petespringerauthor November 7, 2022 / 8:28 pm

    I’m not opposed to volunteering or giving money, but I think each church member should decide what they can afford. Some may be able to give 10% while others may not.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ian Kay November 8, 2022 / 5:35 am

      Invokes the story of the widow’s mite. Those who could afford more end up giving the least. Whereas everyone does their bit with a fixed levy of, say, 10%.

      Liked by 1 person

      • petespringerauthor November 8, 2022 / 7:44 pm

        I’m sure it varies from person to person. We’re the definition of the middle class. Some years we can afford to give more than others, and we do. Of course, it’s hard to generalize and assume others do the same.

        Liked by 2 people

  11. Annette Rochelle Aben November 8, 2022 / 4:53 am

    While there is no rule or a set amount for tithing in our church, each of us knows that our $$ keeps the edifice safe and sound and the church’s bills paid. Since we all love the place, we give generously or out $$ and our time.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 7:42 am

      It’s a great idea and I’m glad you have that support. ❤️

      Like

  12. newlylds November 8, 2022 / 8:30 am

    Hi! All Christian churches should teach tithing. I definitely heard about it in our Presbyterian church. The 10% is mentioned in the Old Testament and Jesus mentions tithing in the New Testament too. I copied this from beforethecross.com…”Abram gave a tenth in Genesis 14.
    Malachi 3:10 talks about how God validates the tithe and says to test Him in giving and that we’ll never “out give” God. Jesus in Matthew 23:23 corrects the Pharisees for how they were tithing and redirects them for what they should do with the tithe instead. By doing this, we can see it’s still clearly a New Testament principle, Jesus validates it, and makes sure the heart of generosity is present when tithing, not selfish motivations.” That being said, I now attend the LDS Church and tithing is much more serious there. The tithing settlement meeting makes me nervous! And I’m pretty sure it’s why my husband won’t join the LDS church. That and eternal marriage 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 1:52 pm

      I love that there are many areas in which the LDS Church is continuing on from past direction.

      Maybe your husband will come around. I figure we always have our agency, even in eternity. 😉

      Like

  13. Richmond Road November 8, 2022 / 12:51 pm

    I’m sure that you are aware, Chel, that there are quite a few questions about just what the LDS church does with these funds. I read recently that the LDS used to be thought of as a religion that dabbled in business but is now more like a business that dabbles in religion. Certainly the manipulation of tax advantages is a bit hard to stomach.
    I’m inclined to agree with others above, who believe that donations to church or charity (and let’s not get the two things confused) should be a matter of conscience and not dictated by formal arrangements.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Chel Owens November 8, 2022 / 1:53 pm

      Indeed I am. The official news releases from the LDS Church state that tithes are not used in business ventures, of which there are many. You could look up how much land they are acquiring, for example.

      Like

      • Richmond Road November 8, 2022 / 11:53 pm

        Well …. in this case such news releases would have to be questionable, considering the source, but that doesn’t mean they are not true. Nevertheless it does seem likely that, financially speaking, the church’s charitable works are grossly overstated. The same could be said for most ‘charitable’ organisations, though.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Chel Owens November 9, 2022 / 6:17 am

          One is right to be suspicious, I am sure. At this point, however, the LDS Church has enough money from other sources and investments that its covering solely the things they’ve outlined (churches, temples, upkeep of such, etc.) doesn’t sound overstated.

          Like

          • Richmond Road November 9, 2022 / 1:44 pm

            Fair enough. You’re certainly in a better position than me to know, Chel. But, gee …..10% of the wages of 16,000,000 members worldwide sounds like a tidy sum, and could certainly keep a lot of temples and churches in sparkling condition ….
            As for the level of charity work, to quote a newspaper here,

            ‘In public statements, the church has claimed its global giving through its charity arm, Utah-based Latter-day Saint Charities increased by $US1.35 billion between 2008 and 2020. The church says it funds programs through organisations such as the Red Cross, Water For People and the World Food Program.

            But an analysis of the Latter-day Saint Charities own accounts — which have never been released or reported previously — show it only provided $US177 million in total charitable support over the same period, a discrepancy of $US1.18 billion.’

            So, yes. One is a tad suspicious.

            Liked by 1 person

              • Richmond Road November 9, 2022 / 11:38 pm

                Yes. I’m a bit of a non-profit organisation myself (or disorganisation) but I can’t seem to get the tax breaks. Though, to be fair, having fallen onto the unemployment scrap heap I don’t pay a lot of tax. I should learn to look at the positives.

                Liked by 1 person

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