Church attendance influences donations, generosity

Church attendance influences the likelihood of congregations to donate to religious institutions, a report from Giving USA has found.

It also influences how generous the donations are.

The report says “Most strikingly, those attending religious services once a month or more make an average annual religious contribution of $1,848, while those attending religious services less than once a month donate $111.”

Drawing on data from the University of Michigan’s Philanthropy Panel Study, the report found giving to religious causes amounted to close to a third of all charitable giving in 2016.

It says researchers found that households attending religious services every week or more are 28 times more likely to give to religious causes than those that never attend.

Nonetheless, about one in ten households that never attend religious services still give to religious institutions. However their donations are smaller. On average these households donate about $67 annually.

In total, the research discovered religious institutions received $122.94 billion in 2016. This accounted for 32 percent of charitable donations.

These donations more than double the amount received by educational institutions, which rate as next highest sector within the not-for-profit sector. In total this sector received $59.77 billion in donations.


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