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Switch to Forum Live View Should Church Property Accumulation Be Taxed?
3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 3:33PM #1
Esdraelon
Posts: 5,236
It has been said that the Vatican has accumulated a vast amount of property and other holdings in the United States in excess of $800 Billion, sic, no one knows exactly how much.

'Bishops' of huge 'mega-churches' are showing off their fleet s of Rolls and other exotic automobiles.

All tax free.

All things considered, if the church cannot show that its temporal holdings are not furthering the purpose of the church, should these holdings be taxed?
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:16PM #2
Ed.W
Posts: 9,442

Oct 25, 2011 -- 3:33PM, Esdraelon wrote:

It has been said that the Vatican has accumulated a vast amount of property and other holdings in the United States in excess of $800 Billion, sic, no one knows exactly how much.

'Bishops' of huge 'mega-churches' are showing off their fleet s of Rolls and other exotic automobiles.

All tax free.

All things considered, if the church cannot show that its temporal holdings are not furthering the purpose of the church, should these holdings be taxed?




So you want to take away a church's 501(c)3 status once they get enough money to covet?


Are there other charities you'd like to see paying taxes?


How do you know that the preacher didn't buy the rolls with his salary, which was taxed?


Maybe you should have gone to divinity school.

‘Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.’ --Lao Tzu
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:33PM #3
tfvespasianus
Posts: 2,089
Contained within the remark  regarding 501(c)(3) status is an interesting point. Briefly, part of the  aforementioned code stipulates that 501(c)(3) institutions are prohibited from direct  involvement in political campaigns.

 

So, removing said status  (and I don't think churches would be in favor of this so it would have to be  done by somebody else) might have... unintended consequences which many might  find unpalatable as well.

 

That being said, there is a  separate, but related controversy in my neck of the woods. In Chicago,  not-for-profit institutions (about half of which in this case are religious  institutions) do receive water and sewage services for free. There are currently  efforts to re-evaluate this deal because there is about $17M at stake. So,  there's that...
Ubi solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant - Tacitus
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:43PM #4
Ed.W
Posts: 9,442

Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:33PM, tfvespasianus wrote:


Contained within the remark  regarding 501(c)(3) status is an interesting point. Briefly, part of the  aforementioned code stipulates that 501(c)(3) institutions are prohibited from direct  involvement in political campaigns.

 

So, removing said status  (and I don't think churches would be in favor of this so it would have to be  done by somebody else) might have... unintended consequences which many might  find unpalatable as well.

 

That being said, there is a  separate, but related controversy in my neck of the woods. In Chicago,  not-for-profit institutions (about half of which in this case are religious  institutions) do receive water and sewage services for free. There are currently  efforts to re-evaluate this deal because there is about $17M at stake. So,  there's that...




Very true about the campaigning.


On the free water and sewerage, that sounds like a local sweetheart deal.  Our water is provided by a private company, they are not even quasi government.


The sewerage service is provided by the city.  If I were you guys I'd delete that freebie and send them a bill for water and sewer. 

‘Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.’ --Lao Tzu
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:48PM #5
Esdraelon
Posts: 5,236

 


Oct 25, 2011 -- 3:33PM, Esdraelon wrote:

It has been said that the Vatican has accumulated a vast amount of property and other holdings in the United States in excess of $800 Billion, sic, no one knows exactly how much.

'Bishops' of huge 'mega-churches' are showing off their fleet s of Rolls and other exotic automobiles.

All tax free.

All things considered, if the church cannot show that its temporal holdings are not furthering the purpose of the church, should these holdings be taxed?




Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

So you want to take away a church's 501(c)3 status once they get enough money to covet?



The mega-churches are obviously exploiting the status. $800 billion in land and property holdings is doing exactly what to serve the furtherance of the dictates of Jesus Christ?


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

Are there other charities you'd like to see paying taxes?



Charities and churches are a breed apart, however, some charities are there for the furtherance of the principals......if you want to look at a charity, look at how much actually goes to 'charity' as opposed to 'administration'............


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

How do you know that the preacher didn't buy the rolls with his salary, which was taxed?


I don't know that, but if he did....makes my point..............but actually, he did NOT buy the rolls, the church gave it to him as a 'gift'...it's actually on the church books as church property...


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

Maybe you should have gone to divinity school.



To learn What regards 501(c)3 status?


 

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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:51PM #6
tfvespasianus
Posts: 2,089

Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:43PM, Ed.W wrote:


If I were you guys I'd delete that freebie and send them a bill for water and sewer. 




That would be my personal  preference as well. However, there is a politician here that, and this is my  interpretation, doesn't want to see Catholic institutions receive said bill.  He's being a fly in the ointment about the whole deal.

 

Whether he is 'devout',  wants to curry favor, or whatever, it matters little to me.
Ubi solitudinem faciunt pacem appellant - Tacitus
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:55PM #7
Esdraelon
Posts: 5,236

Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:33PM, tfvespasianus wrote:


Contained within the remark  regarding 501(c)(3) status is an interesting point. Briefly, part of the  aforementioned code stipulates that 501(c)(3) institutions are prohibited from direct  involvement in political campaigns.

  

So, removing said status  (and I don't think churches would be in favor of this so it would have to be  done by somebody else) might have... unintended consequences which many might  find unpalatable as well.

 

That being said, there is a  separate, but related controversy in my neck of the woods. In Chicago,  not-for-profit institutions (about half of which in this case are religious  institutions) do receive water and sewage services for free. There are currently  efforts to re-evaluate this deal because there is about $17M at stake. So,  there's that...




The basis of the question was to muse whether those institutions who ABUSE the status should not be taxed.


 

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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:58PM #8
Esdraelon
Posts: 5,236

Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:51PM, tfvespasianus wrote:


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:43PM, Ed.W wrote:


If I were you guys I'd delete that freebie and send them a bill for water and sewer. 




That would be my personal  preference as well. However, there is a politician here that, and this is my  interpretation, doesn't want to see Catholic institutions receive said bill.  He's being a fly in the ointment about the whole deal.

 

Whether he is 'devout',  wants to curry favor, or whatever, it matters little to me.




Could be a fly, but at the same time, the church IS powerful politically and most politicians tread carefully, with good reason, where that 501(c)3 status is involved.


The question is should certain practices in relation to that status be regulated (taxed).

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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 5:59PM #9
Ed.W
Posts: 9,442

Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:48PM, Esdraelon wrote:


 


Oct 25, 2011 -- 3:33PM, Esdraelon wrote:

It has been said that the Vatican has accumulated a vast amount of property and other holdings in the United States in excess of $800 Billion, sic, no one knows exactly how much.

'Bishops' of huge 'mega-churches' are showing off their fleet s of Rolls and other exotic automobiles.

All tax free.

All things considered, if the church cannot show that its temporal holdings are not furthering the purpose of the church, should these holdings be taxed?




Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

So you want to take away a church's 501(c)3 status once they get enough money to covet?



The mega-churches are obviously exploiting the status. $800 billion in land and property holdings is doing exactly what to serve the furtherance of the dictates of Jesus Christ?


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

Are there other charities you'd like to see paying taxes?



Charities and churches are a breed apart, however, some charities are there for the furtherance of the principals......if you want to look at a charity, look at how much actually goes to 'charity' as opposed to 'administration'............


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

How do you know that the preacher didn't buy the rolls with his salary, which was taxed?


I don't know that, but if he did....makes my point..............but actually, he did NOT buy the rolls, the church gave it to him as a 'gift'...it's actually on the church books as church property...


Oct 25, 2011 -- 5:16PM, Ed.W wrote:

Maybe you should have gone to divinity school.



To learn What regards 501(c)3 status?


 




I think all they would need to show is that the holdings are not for any personal use rather than show that they are furthering a gospel message.  But I'm not a CPA.


If a church doesn't mind paying a pastor a million dollars a year, then so be it.  If he wants to buy or lease a rolls then so be it.


I get mileage deductions for my business and the government doesn't care whether it gets 10 or 30 mpg.


 

‘Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.’ --Lao Tzu
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3 years ago  ::  Oct 25, 2011 - 6:06PM #10
Hoppy393
Posts: 2,757

Oct 25, 2011 -- 3:33PM, Esdraelon wrote:

It has been said that the Vatican has accumulated a vast amount of property and other holdings in the United States in excess of $800 Billion, sic, no one knows exactly how much.

'Bishops' of huge 'mega-churches' are showing off their fleet s of Rolls and other exotic automobiles.

All tax free.

All things considered, if the church cannot show that its temporal holdings are not furthering the purpose of the church, should these holdings be taxed?


I think it would be difficult to properly evaluate.  A fleet of Rolls Royces is one thing, but a fleet of church vans or shuttles is another.  Is it a cafe or a fellowship hall with coffee?  Rectories are becoming increasingly rare, but how would they be classified? 

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