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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

And Another Thing...

While we’re talking about Christmas…

There is something else that is bothering me about Christian Bashing.

When someone spouts off and tells Christians to quit being “intolerant” of other people and their religions…

and they say to quit threatening to not shop at stores that won’t/don’t promote Christmas…

and they tell Christians to go and do something useful like go help homeless and needy people…

Well… that just goes all over me!

Where would all the Christian Bashers be if it weren’t for the generosity of Christians in America? Without the charitable giving of time and money by the Christians in this country the government wouldn’t be able to keep up with all the needs of anyone, anywhere.

Christians are big on “giving” and they give “big”.

While there are a lot of charitable people here in America, I would challenge anyone on a statistical face off; a dollar for dollar statistical comparison between the dollars donated annually by individual Christians as compared to non-Christians.

Per the Charity Navigator:

In 2004, giving to charities rose 2.3 percent from 2003 levels, when adjusted for inflation. This moderate increase comes after several years of stagnant giving resulting from the economic downturn that started in 2001. The current trend is a positive sign for those who depend on the services of America's charities, which is all of us. Few people realize how large charities have become, how many vital services they provide, and how much funding flows through them each year. Without charities and non-profits, America would simply not be able to operate. Their operations are that big.

Religious organizations received the most support--$88.3 billion. Much of these contributions can be attributed to people giving to their local place of worship. The next largest sector was education ($33.8 billion). When adjusted for inflation, all but two categories of charities saw increases in contributions.

The Charity Navigator is a rating service to help people decide which charities they want to give to. A search on the Charity Navigator website on the term “Christian” turns up 559 charities.

Take a stop by the Better Business Bureau and their Wise Giving Alliance site. On their website they have a similar database set up where they look at the financial records of charitable organizations and rate them according to how much of your donated $1 goes to overhead and salary costs as opposed to their stated purpose/programs. I have visited this site before and it is quite an eye-opener.

Their pie charts tell the entire story in a single picture. Why don’t you take a moment and look at your favorite charity.

Here a few of the Christian organizations that made a significant impact on the hurricane relief effort as listed by the BBB.

World Vision teams with churches and other groups here in the U.S. and around the world. 85 cents of your dollar goes to funding programs and not administrative costs.

How about the United Methodist Committee on Relief? 95 cents of your dollar goes to aid.

Salvation Army – 85 cents

Oklahoma’s Feed the Children – 91 cents

Catholic Charities – 77 cents

While not listed as a charity on any website we must not forget the Southern Baptists!

Having partnered with the Red Cross since 1987, as of December 8, 2005, they have served over 27.4 million hot meals and 25.2 million snacks to the hurricane survivors.

The Southern Baptist Convention of the North American Mission Board is comprised of 44,000 churches and missions in the U.S. and its territories. Their disaster relief is provided through a cooperative program where each church contributes. American Red Cross – In the News - Southern Baptists Help Feed Millions After Katrina

Where would today’s Red Cross be without those “darn Christians”? If it weren’t for the *volunteer* Baptists, it makes me wonder if the American Red Cross would be a recommended charity by the BBB. By the way, the Red Cross’ CEO salary is almost a $500,000/year.


And here’s some hard data for you folks:

From the National Center on Charitable Statistics, Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy, The Urban Institute 2003 data:

Oklahomans that filed itemized income tax returns gave an average of $3887 each with an average adjusted gross income of $38,344. (It sure looks like a bunch of *tithers* to me!)

Ranked 43rd in the nation for adjusted gross incomes; Oklahomans rank 18th in the nation for donations!

Wyoming ranks #1 and Utah #2 for tax deductible charitable giving in the nation.

Christian Bashers need to take notice.

If it weren’t for Christians giving, and giving, and giving…

you would be paying more in taxes, taxes, taxes…

because the government wouldn’t be able to cover the billion$, and billion$, and billion$…

that the charitable people in this country give every year.

They have been giving every year for decades - without the impetus of a major hurricane.

So if Christians want the Salvation Army in front of Wal-Mart or if they want Merry Christmas plastered all over the store fronts or Nativity Scenes on the courthouse lawn…

Taxpayers need to think twice before they say “no”.

Christian Bashers need to stick a sock in it and put their wallet where their mouth is…

Before I stick my wallet back in my purse.



Blogger Moof said...

Wow! Great post!!! I hope a lot of people read it!

December 14, 2005 8:09 PM  
Blogger It's me, T.J. said...


I hope that it isn't just the choir too.


December 14, 2005 8:51 PM  
Blogger Moof said...

If it isn't "just the choir," be prepared to answer some comments ... *eeep!*

You'll have some help though, should that happen!

December 15, 2005 4:56 AM  
Blogger It's me, T.J. said...

Elephant Soap post entitled, "The Death of Christmas"

December 21, 2005 1:58 PM  

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