Tithing to mainline churches has reached its lowest level in at least 41 years. Of the smaller amount churches are receiving, a smaller proportion of church funds is serving the needy outside the congregation. These are two of the findings from an analysis of mainline churches’ tithing and giving patterns from 1968 to 2009 by Empty Tomb, Inc.

The study focused on mainline denominations because data was not available from evangelicals or Roman Catholics, yet the authors suggest that trends amongst Lutherans, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, and other mainliners are broadly representative of American churches.

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