Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Good News For Donors

Many good Catholics are in a moral quandry when it comes to donations.  On the one hand, their local parishes may be rather decent, but their diocese - not so much.  Moreover, we have recently learned that at their November meeting last month, the USCCB voted to increase the amount of money that they assess from the US dioceses.  Thus, not only might good Catholics see some of their money going to a lackluster diocese, but they would then see a portion of that be remitted to an absolutely corrupt USCCB.

For that reason, I was delighted to be informed that the Code of Canon Law allows donors to specify how their donations are to be used.  I am referring specifically to Canon 1300.  Accordingly, a friend suggested some language for a letter attached to such donations and I post it (with my own modifications) below:

Dear Father PASTOR,

Please note that we are donating (AMOUNT OF DONATION) to (NAME) parish and that all thid money must stay within the parish. Please respect our wish that no part of this donation is to be transferred to the (LOCAL DIOCESE) nor should it be included in the calculation of any diocesan assessment. We are happy to support your work because we have confidence that your leadership is faithful to the Catholic Church and her timeless teachings

(end sample latter)

In the Archdiocese of Washington, the suggested letter can be coupled with another strategy that I mentioned in July 2018.  The Christmas and Easter collections are (for the time being) exempt from the archdiocesan assessment.  Save all the money you would have donated throughout the year and then give it on one or both of those days.  Now I might suggest adding that letter to your contributions.

I can only think of one down-side to this strategy.  We are speaking of Canon law here, and as we've seen with Canon 915, the bishops' track record of obedience to canon law has been, uh, rather selective, shall we say.  However, if you're donating to an honorable pastor, I would hope the strategy proves sound.


  1. Wow, I did not know about that Christmas and Easter thing---that all the extra monies (from non-practicing and protestants who show up) can be kept at the parish. Good suggestion to donate then if the parish is a good one.

  2. The other thing you can do is to calculate how much you would give in a year. Then, as unexpected expenses come up, such as a new heating or AC system, broken door, maybe a new security camera, use your $$ to pay for that item, and specifically designate your $$ for it. In that way, it stays local.

    1. One would also have to stipulate that the donation should not be included in the total used to calculate the diocesan assessment.


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