What Churchgoers Should Do If Churches Lose Tax Exemption Status

6 Ways to Remain Faithful No Matter the Cost

Do not use this as an excuse to shy away from the opportunity to speak into the political system. Certainly, such a decision is not the desired outcome. And we could easily decide to give up. But it is a mistake to completely abandon the opportunity this governmental structure gives us. It is an opportunity that many around the world would cherish.


The Supreme Court decision regarding same-sex marriage seemed to immediately spark a conversation surrounding the tax exemption status of U.S. churches. Since 1913, the U.S. government has formally recognized churches as being exempt from federal taxes. Churches and those who give to them benefit from the current tax exempt status. However, the likelihood of this benefit being in place in the future is now being questioned more than ever.

Even though we aren’t at this stage yet, enough conversation has begun that it’s reasonable to consider the ramifications of such a scenario. So what should we, as churchgoers, do if churches actually do lose their tax-exempt status? Here are six thoughts:

1. Give

Tax deductibility has been a side benefit for those who give to their local church, but it has never been the reason why we give. At least, it shouldn’t be. We give because God has told us that this is how we properly steward what He has given to us. And because we passionately care about the mission of God. The loss of tax exemption status should not deter a Christian’s giving. The effect should be negligible. If anything, knowing that our churches are facing a financial giant should motivate us to give more. Because we believe in God and His mission.

2. Celebrate budget cuts

Especially if it is for one of your favorite ministries. Why? Because should the loss of tax exemption become a reality, budget cuts will help maintain the existence of a church. It is a sacrificial, missional move. And so it is not a time to get down or focus on how the cut affects you negatively. It’s not about you, it’s about the mission. So celebrate, knowing that your church will move forward in this new reality.

3. Volunteer

The most important resource for churches has never been money. It’s their people.

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