How Do Churches Make Money? High Paying Ways

Mega churches in the United States and worldwide are growing in popularity. This not only brings together thousands of believers but also brings billions of dollars in profits. And you might ask how churches make money to foot the huge bills of their mega activities and projects.

The key to future funding in churches lies in exploring other sources of fund generating and not just relying on weekly giving of offerings by her members.

Churches need to examine how non-members and non-participants can be induced to advocate for the church’s causes and support it in ways that expand what the church seeks to do.

Is offering the only way churches make money?

Across denominations and faith congregations, the most frequently reported main source of income for the community is what individuals give through their offerings, pledges, donations and contributions.

While most churches work with what individuals give as offerings, major Protestant churches take advantage of trust funds, investments, or donations as a second most common source of finance.

In contrast, the Catholic parishes make money by renting out some of their parish facilities for a fee, which could augment as a source of income.

For the most part, churches make money from donations, regardless of denomination. Sometimes they run fundraisers selling something (like baked goods, Bible videos, or whatever), but most of the time, the money comes from donations.

Do churches pay taxes?

In the United States, churches are considered a non-profit organization and therefore have some tax exemption.

This means that the “owners” of the church can never be paid to be owners. A person can get a salary, but they have to work to get that salary.

Since the churches also use the funds for better fellowship, the government allows them to issue receipts for the donations raised. This enables the people who donate to receive a tax break on the donation.

How do churches make money?

Most of the pathways have improved significantly in most churches as they have become a liable system that makes a lot of money for churches. Here are the high paying ways churches make money and fund their activities.

  1. Tithe and offerings
  2. Crowdfunding
  3. Online Giving for Churches
  4. Text-to-Give Campaign
  5. T-shirt fundraising
  6. Live streaming
  7. Host a sing-a-thon
  8. Church Newsletter
  9. Set up a swap shop
  10. Have a family fun day
  11. Charity auctions
  12. Silent Auctions
  13. Hold a Talent Show
  14. Have a picnic in the community
  15. Church Movie Night
  16. Coffee morning
  17. Start of for-profit companies
  18. Rent out church’s property

Tithe and offerings

The basic flow of funding in some denominations is through tithing and the offerings of their members, which has become a standard system for church service. The tithe speaks of the tenth of their income, as the Bible states, while the sacrifice is voluntary.

Most special offers are missionary collections run by national, state, or local church groups. All or almost all of the money goes to another agency, and the church keeps none of it.


Church crowdfunding is one of the best ways a community can raise money to thrive. It can be a great way to raise funds for one of the following church activities.

Mission trips

If you are planning a missionary trip, you probably know it is not a cheap endeavor for your church or youth group. Crowdfunding can be a great way to get the word out about your missionary journey and raise money.

Construction or renovation

Churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious buildings often need renovation or expansion. If your religious group wants to take on a large construction project, they could use crowdfunding.

Community support

Many churches and religious organizations will raise funds to support families or individuals in their local communities.

An easy way to get everyone involved in the donation process is to set up a crowdfunding campaign and invite community members to donate through the campaign page.

Youth group activities

Youth groups are a great way for young people in a church or religious organization to unite and support one another.

If you need to raise money for your youth group’s various activities and events, you can set up a crowdfunding campaign and ask for donations.

Special programs and events

Whether it’s a Christmas parade or an Easter dinner, many churches and religious organizations host special events throughout the year.

To raise money for these opportunities, many religious organizations are turning to crowdfunding to raise money from their community and community members.

Online Giving for Churches

Donating online is a powerful way for churches to raise more from generous parishioners and other donors through easy-to-use church fundraising.

Investing in dedicated online donation software for churches and religious organizations will effectively provide your communities with the tools they need to give more.

Not only are these tools useful for specific fundraisers, but you can also use online fundraising resources for weekly tithes and offers. As a result, you can increase your regular church giving. Church members can even give from their mobile devices for convenience.

Text-to-Give Campaign

Text-to-give is fast becoming a popular donation idea for churches and religious organizations in US. And there is a good reason for that: it really works.

Invest in text-to-give software and explain it during a Sunday morning church service. You can even use displays and projectors to show your community how it works.

Text-to-give is incredibly easy to implement for your community and makes sense in our digital age. Many people forget to bring cash to church, but everyone has their cell phone.

Text-to-give software, which provides an option to give in multiple locations, is ideal for larger churches with multiple locations.

T-shirt fundraising

Selling t-shirts is a classic fundraising approach for every age group. This idea is even easier thanks to the online t-shirt fundraiser.

You can design custom, high-quality T-shirts to sell to your ward, friends, and family outside of the church.

Design shirts that highlight your church’s programs or mission. You can also add a favourite verse from the Bible or an inspirational quote.

That way, your fundraising products can serve the dual purpose of raising money and starting important conversations whenever your churchgoers wear them.

Live streaming

If donors are used to handing over the plate every week, it might appear like your ward is losing one of the most important ways you are funding your ward’s mission.

However, with a mobile donation, you can still offer a mid-service offering when you live stream your church services.

While your church is live-streamed, your ward can easily set up a new or recurring gift from a computer or phone – provided you have the right tools in your toolkit.

Host a sing-a-thon

Do you have a group of songbirds in your community? Do you need to raise money for a project, event or occasion? Host a Sing-a-Thon to make the most of your members’ talents.

A sing-a-thon is a musical event that helps your church raise money. They can charge entry to the singing festivals and sell concessions throughout the event.

You can also create a requirements system where other parishioners can ask about specific worship hymns by donating a few dollars to the choir director or hymn leader.

Church Newsletter

Did you know your church can allow members to receive tithe directly from your ward letter or bulletin? Whether in print or online, your church’s newsletter can be a valuable donation tool.

For your online church newsletter, add links to your online donation forms or encourage readers to contribute to your text-to-give campaign. If your newsletter is on paper, you can still steer readers to tithing online by adding a QR code link or instructions on how to write text.

Set up a swap shop

A swap shop is a great way to raise money for your church and help your community clean up their garages, basements, and closets.

Designate a classroom or Sunday school office as your business. Then have people donate their fairly used clothes, books, housewares, and knickknacks.

Then sell the items to other members of your church or ward. Whatever you don’t sell can be donated to a thrift store or homeless shelter for good use.

Have a family fun day.

A family day out can be an easy way to raise money for your church while bringing your congregation and families together for an afternoon.

Set up games, food and drink stations, a donation table, and send invitations to your community. You can also hang flyers around town to get the whole community involved.

You can host your Family Fun Day on a Sunday afternoon after church. Once your service ends, direct people to an outdoor area for fun, games, food, and fundraising.

Charity auctions

Charity auctions can be a quick and energetic way for your church or organization to raise more money and interact personally with your parishioners. You also have the opportunity to build solid business relationships.

Ask about charity auction items from local businesses. Try to donate as many items as you can for next to nothing. This way, you can use your budget to create a great atmosphere for your attendees.

Hire an auctioneer, send out invitations, and provide food and drinks. Make sure everyone knows the rules of your charity auction beforehand. People will leave with unique items and experiences, and your church can raise more money.

Your church can write letters to businesses and community members to raise money.

Silent Auctions

Silent auctions are a fun way to give your community members extra time while they bid on unique and engaging items. Plus, if you find the right auction items, you have the potential to raise big bucks.

Ask local businesses and individuals if they would like to donate items to your silent auction. Common items include restaurant gift cards, signed memorabilia, lessons with a professional, gift baskets, and more.

You can use a mobile bidding tool to give your participants a technically enhanced bidding experience. The mobile bid software also makes it easier for your volunteers and employees to check in and out and monitor items.

Hold a Talent Show

Host a talent show as one of your fundraising ideas for churches and religious organizations. Hosting a talent show is a fun and easy way to raise cash.

This can be particularly effective and enjoyable for the children in your church youth group, as entertainment of all kinds is welcome.

Charge a low entry fee and sell concessions to complement your fundraiser. Don’t forget to set up a general donation table or booth. You can use the area to inform attendees why you’re asking for contributions.

Have a picnic in the community.

A church-wide picnic can be a great opportunity to get to know your congregation better and raise funds for your church.

Send out invitations a few weeks in advance and promote your picnic via social media and email. You can either deliver the food or ask people to bring covered dishes.

Charge a small entrance fee for the picnic and set up a general donation table or booth. Have a staff member stationed at the table to answer all participants’ questions and provide them with additional information about supporting your church and getting involved.

Church Movie Night

Everyone loves a good movie – and when it offers the opportunity to spend time with family and friends, a movie night becomes even more enjoyable. Your community will have a great time watching a classic movie to help support your church.

First, decide which film you want to show and where you want to host the event. Charge a small entry fee and sell concessions during the movie to raise more cash.

You may need to acquire the rights to show the movie depending on which movie you select. However, if an aspiring filmmaker is in your community, you can offer to show their work.

Coffee morning

Your early risers will likely crave a hot cup of joe on Sunday morning. They probably wouldn’t say no to a homemade muffin or scone.

Put your coffee and muffin together before the service to catch the parishioners before or after church. You will be grateful for picking up this little morning.

Pro tip: Check with your local cafes to see if they will donate supplies like cups and lids. You will be surprised how willing you are to give something back.

Start off for-profit companies.

Churches and other not-for-profit organizations are allowed to establish legally for-profit companies as long as the for-profit organizations pay their share of taxes and the profits from the companies are returned in support of the church or not-for-profit organization.

Although starting a for-profit business can be daunting for clergymen. Pastors do not need to fully understand how to run a business as long as they can delegate this responsibility to lay people in their communities with experience running a business.

Rent out church’s property.

Does your church own property? In this case, you may be sitting on multiple sources of income.

Depending on the size of your property and how it is being used, there are at least three ways you can use it to generate income. You may be able to rent your facility (or part of it) for the following:

  1. Business premises
  2. Coworking space
  3. Events

Most churches have enough unused space to rent out to a health club for $ 8,000 a month.

The church can cover the entire monthly mortgage with the additional income they earn from this lease.

Your church may not have enough free space to save several thousand square feet. But do you have unused office space or a wing of your building that you can rent as an office?

Can you turn part of your building into a workshop for a local craftsman? Is your church building ideally located to make room for a cafe or retail store? These few questions will help you rethink the possibilities.


Churches have always considered ways to expand their streams of income. In that way, they can be better prepared for any ups and downs of giving that may arise now or in the future. This is why you must understand and explore how churches make money, especially if you intend to work in/with a church.


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