2. There are unexpected financial benefits
Slide 2 of 10
The government allows ministers to receive a housing allowance but pay no tax on it. And the church can set aside money for your mileage and other ministry expenses and cover them for you, instead of their coming out of your pocket. From time to time, generous church members may give you money, for no reason other than the goodness of their heart.
Churches vary on this practice, of course, but of my six pastorates, two of them had generous members who took care of their preacher in this way. It was never a large amount, but a hundred dollars here and a hundred there can make life a lot easier.
A wealthy church member once bought me a new car. And wanted me to tell no one he had done it. A couple of times when my family was leaving on vacation, another member would walk across the street to my office and give me a few hundred dollar bills to help with expenses.
Once he handed me a check for a thousand dollars to be put in the church account, but which I could use to help people. He wanted no tax credit for it, and I was accountable to no one but the Lord. (Those were different days then, and now we’d have more stringent rules as to how the pastor could draw on that account. But I never abused it.
Oh, and he would replenish the funds from time to time. I was disappointed for any number of reasons when he died.)
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