A new report, released today by Georgetown University’s Brian Grimm, provides an insightful glimpse into the powerful economic realities contributed by religious organizations which benefit the U.S. economy.
According to the study, religion contributes over a trillion dollars to the U.S. economy each year — benefiting society economically (a point of impact not often considered when discussing this particular segment of our culture), in addition to its social and spiritual contributions.
Faith-based initiatives, business, and charities bring in close to 400 billion dollars a year in revenue. Congregations alone make up nearly 75 billion. The Washington Post reports:
Then there are churches and congregations themselves. Based on prior censuses of U.S. bodies of worship, the Grimms looked at 344,894 congregations, from 236 different religious denominations (217 of them Christian, and others ranging from Shinto to Tao to Zoroastrian). Collectively, those congregations count about half the American population as members. The average annual income for a congregation, the study said, is $242,910.
While some anti-religious detractors may attempt to spin this in a “religion is big business” sort of direction, the study leaves little doubt that religious organizations are making a major positive impact in the contemporary U.S. economy.
What do you think? Have you ever thought of the positive effects the church might be having on the economies of the world? Let us know on Facebook or in the comments below.