Threat Cannot Make the Church Relent. . .
By Pastor Peters - Posted at Pastoral Meanderings:
There are those who suggest that the threat of losing a tax exemption is a great power. I contend that it is only the power we grant it. Tax exemption is not a bad thing but I wonder if we have grown so attached to it that churches would be willing to surrender anything and everything in order to maintain their favored tax status. The reality is that tax exemption saves us some bucks, to be sure, but it also has contributed to an entitlement that is not healthy. Because we can, we as churches tend to build all kinds of ancillary structures not directly related to our worship of worship, education, and mercy. Because we can, we have bloated properties that are used little or used by things that have no direct connection to our purpose. So we go looking for ways to preserve our status as landlords, renting out facilities for income because we need desperately need the funds. Perhaps if our properties actually cost us more, we would be more reticent about expanding our facilities and find ways to do what we are called to do without such expensive campuses (excluding, of course, the space used for the liturgy).