Its time they contribute! Our country needs the $$$!
It was the fervent hope of the founders of our great nation that its government would not trespass on the province of religion, and that religion would find neither refuge nor condemnation from a secular government. The founders' commitment to this idea was unequivocal. The very first words of the Bill of Rights read: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Whether you interpret that statement as an originalist, papist, feminist, or any other -ist, exempting religious organizations from paying taxes is a clear case of our government "respecting an establishment of religion," precisely what the framers intended to prohibit. This is not to suggest that you abandon your church or your faith. For one thing, any religious organization that lives up to its commitments to its congregation and community would have nothing to fear from filing a tax return, just like every other non-profit. For another, when these institutions pay taxes like every other non-profit, each citizen's tax burden is significantly lessened and consequently he or she maybetter endow a worthy institution with individual support. It is the flip side of the same coin: as your right to practice a religion must be respected by government, it may not support churches by tax subsidies or any other means.
**Contrary to popular belief. Places of worship (ie, churches, temples, etc) are NOT "non-profit" so they should not be treated in the same manner as legitimate non-profit establishments.
***A place of worship or "religious group" should ONLY be able to receive tax exemptions on the grounds of any charitable work they perform, they should be eligable for tax exemption on that particular contribution rather than benefit from the presumption that religion equals charity! Having overall tax exemption status for teaching a belief should NOT be valid reason.