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On Giving Tuesday, U.S. Christians donate generously to charities

As Americans share with others on this Giving Tuesday, Christians once again are among the most charitable people.

“It won’t come as a surprise that people who are invested in their Christian faith also give back,”  said John Farquhar Plake, PhD., chief ministry officer for the American Bible Society “But what might surprise some is that people who attend church and engage in the truths of scripture give a higher percentage of their income — and more money overall — to all charities, not just to faith-based organizations.”

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The society’s annual State of the Bible report confirmed the generosity of Christians:

  • More than two-thirds of American households donated to charity in 2022. This shows a strong rebound from the previous year (62 percent in 2021), and it comes close to pre-COVID levels.
  • Bible engagement is positively correlated with generosity. Americans who are scripture engaged (92 percent) were significantly more likely to give. On average, scripture-engaged givers donated almost one-third more dollars than those in the middle and more than twice as much as the Bible disengaged.
  • Religious organizations received the greatest portion of charitable giving in 2022. Religion was one of the few sectors that saw an increase in the total amount of charitable donations, with more gifts going to faith-based organizations including local churches, parishes, temples and other nonprofits.
  • Americans who go to church are more likely to be generous across the board. This is the second year in which Americans who attend church, even infrequently, are far more likely to donate to charity — any charity — than those who do not (91 percent and 52 percent, respectively).
  • Americans who make more money tend to give more money. About four in five households annually earning $100,000 or more make charitable contributions. That exceeds every other income group. At the lowest levels of income (households earning $30,000 or less), only 55 percent are donors.
  • Although Americans who make more money tend to give more, the percentage of income donated by those who give runs much higher among lower-income groups. American donors with an annual household income of less than $10,000 give at an estimated average percentage of 5.3 percent, while donors with an annual household income of more than $150,000 give at an estimated average percentage of 0.6 percent.
  • Thankfulness is connected to generosity. Of those who strongly agree with the statement, “I thank God daily for who he is and what he is doing in my life,” 85 percent donate to charity.

–Alan Goforth

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