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The StartCHURCH Blog

Ever since Raul and his wife set out to start a new church, it has been their passion to share the difficult task of church management with ministers and ministry leaders. Taking courses at Bible college and attending church planting conferences are good, but optional, ideas. However, knowing and understanding the legal, business, and tax aspects of church and ministry is not optional, and getting it right is a requirement!

It is the founder's desire that every StartCHURCH blog function as a tool to help you grow strong in these areas. In each blog, you will find a wealth of information that will not only benefit your ministry, but might also help to keep you out of IRS trouble. The authors take time to research and write about the latest legal and tax changes happening in the world of ministry. They also address issues that affect pastors, leaders, and board members personally. Overall, the bottom line commitment is to empower you with the knowledge necessary to make informed decisions.

Please take some time to browse the postings. With the collective knowledge and experience that StartCHURCH brings, coupled with applicable and encouraging feedback posted by the readers, you may find these blogs are more helpful than you can imagine!

Viewing blogs by category: IRS Compliance

02 Nov 2017

IRS Rules Church “Coffee Shop” Not Tax-Exempt

Raul Rivera

I love talking with pastors. I get to hear about how their churches are impacting their community and about their visions and dreams for the future.  Of the thousands of conversations that I have had with pastors throughout the years, I have noticed that there seems to be a common denominator amongst pastors and it is that pastors tend to have…

26 Oct 2017

How a Church Mistake Can be Costly to Pastors

Raul Rivera

On October 17, 2011, a U.S. bankruptcy court* ordered a minister in Michigan to pay $85,814.69 in taxes plus penalties and interest. Why? The IRS said the minister was considered a “responsible party” for purposes of the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty, and the court agreed. How did this happen? What exactly is the Trust Fund Recovery Penalty? In…

19 Oct 2017

Revoked for One Missed Form

Raul Rivera

Pastor Howell’s administrative staff was in a frenzy. His church had created a nonprofit daycare in 2014. The daycare was serving 30 children; it was flourishing and made $170,000 in income that year. The income was enough to provide a few raises and to upgrade the educational materials. Though the daycare was prospering, the staff was somber…

03 Oct 2017

Are There Any Benefits of 501(c)(3) for Churches?

Raul Rivera

There is a lot of information on the Internet about whether or not churches should apply for and obtain 501(c)(3) approval. There are those who say churches should not apply for 501(c)(3) approval and there are those who say churches should apply for it.  I have addressed the question of whether a church needs to be 501(c)(3) approved and provided…

24 Aug 2017

IRS Denies a $65 Million Charitable Tax Deduction

Raul Rivera

In order for your donors to claim a tax deduction for the donations they give to your church, they must properly “substantiate” their donations.The word substantiate means to provide evidence to support or prove the truth of something. So, for those who donate to your church, they must be able to “prove” the charitable deductions…

22 Aug 2017

What You Need to Know Before Supporting Missions

Raul Rivera

From the time he was a young teenager, Chris understood that the most important need in the world was for all people to come into relationship with God through Jesus Christ. He was passionate about delivering the gospel to unreached nations across the earth. Now, in his early 30s, the Lord called him to pastor a relatively young church, but he was…

17 Aug 2017

How Pastors Misuse Church Credit Cards & What To Do About It

Raul Rivera

Understanding how to properly use a church credit card is imperative if pastors and church leaders wish to maintain financial accountability, stewardship, and integrity. Consider the following story. A few weeks after being hired as the new senior pastor, Howard was given a church credit card. He was told the credit card was for times when he needed…

08 Aug 2017

The Missing Ingredients in Starting a Church

Nathan Camp

My wife is Greek and one of her favorite things to do is cook. Recently, she was trying to cook a special Greek bread. She spent hours measuring and mixing the ingredients, working the dough, letting it rise, and checking on it every few minutes.  Finally, she put the dough into the pan, placed it in the oven, set the timer, and waited.  My…

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