The State of Church Giving through 1993

Ronsvalle, John L., and. Sylvia Ronsvalle. The State of Church Giving through 1993. Champaign, IL: the empty tomb, inc., 1995.

This volume, another in "The State of Church Giving" series, contains analysis of giving trends in Protestant churches in the United States based on data from 29 denominations. Findings include: Total contributions as a percentage of income showed only a slight decrease from 1992 to 1993. Giving for local congregational expenses continued a pattern of alternately increasing and decreasing, with an increase from 1992 to 1993 partially offsetting a decrease from 1991 to 1992. Giving for benevolences, as a percentage of income, declined for the eighth year in a row. Analysis of data from an expanded set of 40 Protestant denominations shows similar patterns. A comparison between mainline and evangelical denominations found higher levels of giving but a steeper decline in giving among the evangelical denominations. In one section the Ronsvalles compare giving data reported by denominations to estimates of giving from an annual report published by the American Association of Fund-Raising Counsel Trust for Philanthropy as well as to figures from a report from Independent Sector. Another chapter of this report develops a model to compare member giving patterns in the Roman Catholic Church with those among Protestants. Using this model, and taking into account denominational differences in clergy compensation, parishioner-to- clergy ratios, and the number of worship services, the authors claim that Catholic per capita giving is about 90% of the per capita giving to the Southern Baptist Convention and The United Methodist Church, respectively.(SM)