7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 28, 2014 5:11 PM by BoBraxton

    Tithe offerings contributions in retirement

    BoBraxton

      Protestant (Christians reformed and reforming) in the Western hemisphere have perhaps an unique view of tithing. My spouse and I pledge annually ten percent of our income. Perhaps a decade of so ago, my brother one year younger contacted me with his plan to retire at age 60 (or 61) and said he (married) could do so on $48,000 per year for living expenses. My response was that I intended for my spouse and I to continue behaviors we already practiced including both contributions (my spouse likes to give) and investing (money to me means Security, to her it means Freedom). When we got home Sunday afternoon, I plugged in the numbers from our income tax return and calculated percentages. Instead of ten percent, our deductible contributions for 2013 turn out to total more than one third. In 2014 my spouse is already taking first Required Minimum Distribution (70 1/2 this May) and that will be preliminary budget for our 2014 Contributions, so all of it will become deductible, still not quite as much as ours for 2013. My impression is that although people in general who report contributions (to the media) give something like two percent or three percent annually from income, there are certain (generally religious?) groups whose members take seriously (and practice) the Biblical tithe / ten percent. For us (raised Baptists) this is the beginning to which we add Special offerings throughout the year, special giving to Mission, plus a host of Miscellaneous (alphabetized) and a lot of "Emerging" contributions (neighbors ask, memorials from someone who dies and so forth) as wall as non-deductible political contributions (partisan). Others? one of the joys of retirement, now in our third year, is Giving - because we can.

        • Re: Tithe offerings contributions in retirement
          MyR Community Manager

          BoBraxton, thank you for creating a new discussion thread! We appreciate and enjoy your participation in the MyRetirement online community and look forward to your future contributions.

          • Re: Tithe offerings contributions in retirement
            JoeW519

            Like you, I used to give more than 10% by some margin. Now (in retirement) I need to budget with less room to flex, so we limit ourselves to 10% which includes the church of course but also make a commitment to the poor.

             

            Another personal twist involves the delay of donation -- my wife still works on commission and I continue to deal with royalties, so we decided to "tithe" based on our prior year's earnings. Last year was good; this year so far is weaker for us; but I "saved" 10% of each check last year for donations this year and it doesn't hamstring us week-to-week.

              • Re: Tithe offerings contributions in retirement
                BoBraxton

                Makes total sense. In the past, in order to make sure the money was there, I also "saved" by putting it into my own personal checking account. The only checks written from there were tithe to the church (weekly). This year (our third calendar year in retirement) we are paying two months at a time, so already two out of six for the calendar year 2014.

              • Re: Tithe offerings contributions in retirement
                JerryD

                We take a different approach to charitable giving. We have built into our trust gifts to mostly named charities at fixed percentages of the estate. These will occur at the death of the last spouse.

                • Re: Tithe offerings contributions in retirement
                  KwP

                  People have the ability to do and give what they believe in their heart is right. On decent, but not very high income we have been able to build well over a million dollars of net worth over 22 years even though we tithed and gave over 15% in offerings to gospel ministry. We desire to give greatly to spread the gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ and help others learn to do things His way. While we believe this has helped discipline and bless us on earth to get to where we are, our greatest joy will be to see those saved in Heaven or the New Earth. We certainly encourage others to take on this passion, yet we do not assume that everyone needs to give at the level we do and some may give far more. Our hope is that everyone will read the bible and ask the LORD for understanding of what they should give, so that they can to the fullest extent be a blessing to others with the blessing wherewith they are blessed.