Am I REQUIRED to join a parish, and to give that parish money?


Yes? Why?

No? Why not?


You are a member of a parish based on your geographical location, not by virtue of registering in the parish office.

As to supporting your parish, I don’t know that it is “required” per se, but if you do not have a good reason for not supporting them, I don’t think that refusing to would be in accordance with the gospel teachings.


Yes. Let’s assume that I give to worthy causes.
Worthy CATHOLIC causes…not the Humane Society.


So… why is your parish not a worthy cause?


You are a member of the parish (and the diocese) in which you live. There is no option to join or not join. Canonically, if you are Catholic, you are a member of that parish, and that pastor has pastoral care over you. You don’t have the option to belong “nowhere”. Even transients and homeless are addressed in canon law.

Are you required to give money to your parish (and diocese)? You are required to financially support the Church. The Fifth Precept: You shall help to provide for the needs of the Church (each according to his abilities).

When you look at the teachings of the Church and the living experience of the Church from the time of the Apostles on, it is very clear the expectation is to support the local Church (which is the diocese, and the bishop further defines his diocese into parishes) and the Church as a whole-- the dioceses for example, support missions and send money to support the good works of the Pope, etc.

We are called to prayerfully discern your situation and how you can be a good steward of your time, talent, and treasure in building up the Kingdom. It is quite clear from Scripture that we are to support the local church through alms, through time, and through talent.

There are a number of Church documents on Stewardship. Perhaps start here.


Not relevant to the question.


I already know that, but good info for people following that do not.
I thought this might be a good topic, and a worthy discussion.


Actually, it is. You say you give to worthy Catholic causes, with the implication that those contributions should offset any obligation to provide support to your parish. From my perspective, if you believe that your other giving is relevant to this issue, then your reasons for supporting those causes instead of your parish are germane to the question.


I would say yes because the Church is the Body of Christ, and you are a member of that Body. Being apart from the Body is kind of like an amputated limb trying to survive on its own.

Giving is affirmative to help in the service of the Church as you are able. Some can give more, & some can give less. It’s always good to see how the Church puts that money to use.


See 1KE’s response for your answer.

Now, if you want to know about the reality of my situation and my response to it…

I always throw in some $ at my geographical parish when we attend there. Which is not often.
I always throw in more $$ where we do attend most often.

I donate to 2 Catholic organizations:
A Byzantine Rite monastery in Michigan, and the nearest FSSP.
I give generously when I can, and modestly the rest of the time.

It really is not part of the question whether or not a Catholic is REQUIRED to give to the parish. That’s a binary yes / no answer.


Very little in morality is a binary yes/no answer.


Questions already answered but I just want to affirm it - yes, we are required to give and assist the Church, in our case it may be the parish we are (geographically) in, according to our ability to do so. It is often said in term on our ‘3Ts’ - talent, treasure and time.


Not a specific parish but it makes sense to support the one you attend. One is a member of a jurisdiction by territory and sui iuris church (Latin Church, Maronite Church, Byzantine Church, etc.).

Precept of the Church 5. Help provide for the needs of the Church.


Objective does not mean binary answers.


That’s a binary answer.

The OBJECTive good of morality is God.


I’m sorry, but this is becoming foolish now.

You can have an objective morality, and still have situations that require more than a simple yes/no to a basic query.

Applying this to your situation:
Basic principle:
Are we required to give money to our parish?
The Fifth Precept of the church requires us to help provide for the needs of the Church

Situation #1
If I give money to the church, my children will have nothing to eat.
You have a moral duty as a parent to provide for your children.

In this situation you are clearly not required to give money to the church. As your circumstances change, you can reassess.

Situation #2
My parish has gone completely off the rails and has been undertaking activities that contravene Church teaching, such as participating in Pride parades
Well, clearly financial support is the least of your concerns here, but you do not have to support what seems to be heretical activities.

Those are two ways where additional information changes the outcome of the assessment.

I suggest you review the principles of moral theology.


And that’s what’s called an ad hominem attack, and the signal for me to depart.


Please provide a source for this assertion.


God is un-changing. You really need a source for that?


No. I am requesting a source for your assertion that because God is unchanging and because objective morality is changing, it therefore follows that all queries regarding morality can be satisfied with a simple yes/no answer.

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