Mitt Romney's Tithing

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In early 2012 Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney revealed his tax statements for 2010 and 2011, showing him to be comfortably within the top one percent of America in wealth, one of the wealthiest candidates ever to run for U.S. president. This and the amount of taxes paid by Romney (about 15%) caused a stir, but so did his charitable giving, most of which went to his church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes nicknamed the Mormon Church. About 15 percent of Romney's income went to such charitable giving.

Interviewed on television, Romney said he had promised himself (and God) at a young age that he would always pay "tithing," and he has been constant and consistent in keeping that promise. The words "tithe" and "tithing" refer to the number ten. As an ancient biblical gospel principle, tithing refers to the offering of 10 percent of one's increase to the Lord through His ecclesiastical representatives on earth.

“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10).

The paying of tithing is a principle with promise, that the Lord will pour out blessings upon those who live this law. Not that all Mormons are rich, but the stories of the blessings (both spiritual and temporal) of paying tithing are common in the Church.

Michael Otterson, spokesman for the LDS Church, wrote an article in the Washington Post explaining the paying of tithing.

The principle is simple to understand and administer. Each member, knowing their accountability to God, decides for themselves what “one tenth of their increase” means, when and how to pay it. For people on regular salaries, it is usually a tenth of their income and paid weekly or monthly. It is an honor system that works very well, because each member has a sense of consecrating a portion of his or her means to God’s work. Since the entire church depends on its members to serve as lay ministers and provide service in a myriad of ways, paying tithing is simply another private yet tangible affirmation of that spirit of sacrifice.

Mitt Romney pays the same amount of tithing as the poorest member of the LDS Church — ten percent. When a person pays with stocks rather than cash, he or she is paying "in kind," not too different from the early days of the [[Restoration|restored gospel] in America, when people paid with the best ten percent of their produce or livestock. These tithes paid in kind are liquidated by the Church for their current value.

Other offerings are made my members of The Church of Jesus Christ.