This is not an anti-religion post although many will choose to see it that way.
I will say up front that YES, I am personally against organised religion and firmly believe that the Roman Catholic Church is the most evil
corporation on the planet (and always has been). I am, as many will know, an agnostic, however although I do disagree with believer's I also respect
thier right as sentient beings to believe in whatever makes sense to them.
I am not suggesting that religous organizations have to pay tax, but they should be forced to declare how much money they take in from thier
Read on to find out why...
My local newspaper ran a half page story yesterday about the Cathedral in my city. The story was concerning the need for 8 million dollars worth of
renovations (on top of 4ish million that ws spent a couple years ago). The piece went on to say that this one building was not unique, half of the 37
Catholic churches in the city and surrounding area need millions of dollars worth of work.
The Archbishop had quite a statement about how they were worried about the future because they didn't have the money
to fix the
cathedral, let alone any of the other buildings:
"We had considered fund raising, but the consultant group we hired has advised us that people are donation-weary...the local businesses, when
asked, indicated a level of support far below what we will require.
It is sad to think that many of these churches will end up being closed as a result. As for the Cathedral, we'll probably have to tear it down if we
cannot find the money for the repairs.
(I bet you can see where this is going now)
On my way home from work this morning I noticed that there was a sign in front of one of the Anglican churches. The sign indicated that the
renovations being done to this religious group's building were being paid in part by the federal government's stimulous plan (here in Canada the
stimulous didn't go to the banks, it went towards education, infrastructure and tax credits for home owners to make thier homes more efficient).
(Anglican church first...)
I have no real problem with the church recieving a grant if it met the requirements, HOWEVER my city just condemned a high school and is trying to
find a way to pay for a replacement building.
The Anglican church, like all others, has a collection plate every time they hold mass, why is it that they cannot spend thier own money to renovate
thier own building?
Why are taxpayer dollars being given to a private organisation when there are PUBLIC buildings that are in dire need of those funds?
(Now to the R.C.C....)
I am completely disgusted by the entire article.
Firstly the Archbishop states that they cannot ask for donations and as a result they will likely tear down a new-gothic style 171 year old stone
building. This strikes me as a blatant
blackmial piece against the Catholics in the area AND against the city as a whole.
The Archbishop can't ask
anyone one for money, but he can talk about how sad it will be to lose such a landmark for the city in a
half page story
in Friday's paper (Friday is the day the local TV guide is published for the next week, it covers all the events happening
over the weekend ETC...it is the one day's paper that most people will buy based on what is included).
The city is going to lose it's cathedral?
I bet both the mayor and local Catholics line up in droves with thier checkbooks open and ready to save this historic landmark.
Actually, I guarentee it.
My point for this post?
How much money does the RCC accept from the people in my city, my province, all of Canada and the entire world as a whole?
The RCC takes in BILLIONS of dollars, but it is too broke to pay for BASIC maintainence on it's properties?
Please tell me how this is possible.
How can they take all of this money in, NOT pay taxes (in addition to receiving charity status from utilities) and then REFUSE to spend a dime out of
thier treasury to take care of thier own properties? Furthermore, how is it that they allow thier buildings important monuments in the center of
(an Archbishop's words) to degrade to the point that they are possibly unsafe to use?
I may not agree with organized religion, but I truely feel sorry for those faithful believers who are going to line up to donate everything they have
to save this building (and likely all the others too).
Churches can retain the tax free status, that's not the issue for me, but I think it's time for religions to file earning statements. I think the
people who fund these organizations have a right to know EXACTLY how much money is being taken in and what is being done with that money.
Otherwise I have to scream
edit on 27-11-2010 by [davinci] because: Form & Content