How do churches and temples make money?

@scheng1 (21568)
Singapore
December 21, 2011 12:07am CST
Have you ever wonder how do churches and temples make money? While the most common way is for donations, it is definitely not the only means they earn. I know that certain temples in Singapore keep ashes, and the families of the dead have to pay a certain sum to buy the best location, and they have to pay a yearly maintenance fee too. As for churches, some of them have kindergarten classes. Is there any other way that churches and temples can earn?
1 person likes this
7 responses
@nishant5n (1067)
• India
21 Dec 11
Dear Scheng1, hello; how are you? I can tell about temples....there are many ways to earn money apart from the "donation boxes," and they are as follows: 1. We offer coconuts, and many other things to our God, which are again sent to the shopkeepers nearby temples who purchase them at a low cost from the temple -- a kind of recycling. 2. They have special arrangements for "VIP visitors or "Bhaktas" for their worship which is, although, useless but still in practice. 3. They offer special rituals for any and all kinds of problem for which they charge "special" amount. 4. In some temples, there are ritual of offering oil to God. This oil is also recycled to the market which brings money to the temples. 5. There are some followers or "Bhaktas" who donate money or precious metals without telling their name. 6. Some temples have special arrangements like accommodation, canteen, etc. which has a higher price (but this is not very common practice). To sum up, temples are earning a great deal of money without paying any taxes, and the money the priest is earning is beyond our calculation at some places. In my native place, Mathura, UP, there is tender system to the the priest-ship of a temple. People use to bid to get it, and when they get it, the profit goes to their pocket...it's like a business there...
@scheng1 (21568)
• Singapore
21 Dec 11
Hi Nishant5n, very ocmprehensive lists of the ways the temples make money. I read some blog posts and come across a part where the visitors say they buy amulets from temples in Thailand. Apparently the Thai monks make amulets and sell to those who want. This is also a form of earning money for the temples. I think in some cases, the priests or monks also earn from performing rites for certain functions, such as burial or other special events. I think you are right in that the priests are making more tax free money that we usually think.
• United States
22 Dec 11
The temple that I go to have a shop that sell prayer cassettes, bookmarks, wallhangings and cds. My aunt bought some cassettes for her car so that she could hear prayers while driving and I have some wallhangings that have some prayers on it for my room. The temple charges a moderate amount for these items but since it's only to sustain themselves, we always want to buy something to help out.
• Indonesia
21 Dec 11
Every person who comes to church offerings. Each offering will be gathered into the church treasury. Cash is usually used for the expansion of religious activities and to be donated to orphanages and children can not afford to hire officers and the church is taken from the church treasury. I do not know for sure how the temple got the money, but it has certainly had enough funds to support their religious activities.
@cearn25 (3460)
• Philippines
21 Dec 11
I think they get earnings from the people who donates money or in kind to them. Everyday there are masses so they will never lose money. Every masses there is also money. They get it straight from donation.
@bubuth (1816)
• Philippines
21 Dec 11
Only one thing is coming in my mind,i think they get money from donations. Every mass many people is giving donation and this donation is very helpful to church. Church is also sending donation in kids that don't have enough budget for their education like my classmate. Church sending her check that she will give on school for her to enroll her self. Church also help a lot of orphanages.
@scheng1 (21568)
• Singapore
22 Dec 11
Hi Bubuth, definitely the church does not earn from donation alone. Over here, some churches have a Bible shop to sell Bibles and other religious literature. They also have kindergarten classes for the kids. The monthly fee is enough to pay for the salary of the teachers, and profits go to the church. I think the churches own many lands in many countries. The Catholic church is the richest of all. They have a collection of many rare and expensive paintings. Just sell one or two paintings and they can rake in a few million dollars for charity purpose.
@Voices (153)
• Singapore
21 Dec 11
The Churches in Singapore do collect money from their fellow mates. From what I know, it's 10% of their monthly salary. That's why churches are rich and are able to expand... 10% is a lot ... Temples make money mainly from donations. :]
• India
21 Dec 11
All religious places earn their living by selling religion. I know about temples, they thrive on: Daily donations and also hefty donations on auspicious occasions. Selling the daily prasad or offering to God to the followers Conducting special pujas for devotees against high sum of money Conducting marriages Conducting various other ceremonies which are more costly if conducted at home.
@scheng1 (21568)
• Singapore
22 Dec 11
Hi Sudiptacallingu, yes, all these services bring in huge sums of money. Not many people dare to negotiate for a lower price, and they want good luck and wealth, so they are willing to pay a higher price for more prayers or special chanting. Even in the Taoist temples, they also make money from selling the hell money and the incense sticks. The priests conduct mass prayers on certain occasions too. Those who want to join must buy the whole prayer sets from the temple. It is really a good way to make extra money.