First, I should state thatI know I am scrupulous, and I need to start discussing my problems with a priest. (In fact, I have already made plans to start discussing this stuff more in depth with my priest outside of confession. A first step, I guess…).
But in this particular case, I do not feel it would be appropriate. I need to discuss certain problems, and to go into the sufficient detail for the questions, as will become apparant, it would be much better if I remained anonymous (since it involves other people as well).
Basically, I live with my parents in Kentucky (both of which are Protestant Christians). To help out, I pay them about $85/week. They don’t require it of me, nor would they necessarily be mad at me if I didn’t pay it. However, for obvious reasons, I believe it the right thing to do since I do live with them (though I guess I could move out). Also, since my parents are raising my little nieces, my sister and brother-in-law in Illinois sends them $200 every month through the mail (I don’tknow if they claim it on taxes or not). And, sometimes, my father in his spare time at home works on computers that belong to other people from his workplace, which he gets paid for. He also sells stuff on ebay, and also to people from around where we live at times. And, of course, there are Christmas and birthday presents (usually money) my parents receive from family. (There might be other things I can’t remember at the moment…).
The problem is, my father does not report any of the above when he files his income tax returns. I don’t know enough about doing taxes to know whether or not this is required to be reported. (I have a hard enough time worrying about my own taxes). Perhaps it is simply me being scrupulous.
I asked a lady at H&R Block last February about the money I give them, and she said that what I gave didn’t need to be reported by him. However, I didn’t describe the other stuff to the person from H&R Block that he doesn’t report. That being the case, I’m afraid that if it is something that needs to be reported, I might be doing something wrong by continuing to give money to them. That is, I am afraid that, perhaps the money I give him would not need to be reported if it was by itself, but that when you include everything else above in addition to it, then perhaps that would require the money I give to be reported as well; I have absolutely no idea.
Also, there are other things that concern me, as far as what my father does concerning computers…For instance, when he only has 1 CD of certain computer software (for instance, Windows 98), he will use it on multiple computers in our household (despite what the liscence agreement states). Also, like I said above, he often works on other peoples computers, and when he does so he will often load software on those computers from the software CD’s he owns (though I don’t believe he charges them for that, I should add; I think he only charges them for his actual labor on their computers). And he’s also bought quite a few laptops off ebay, that would already have software on them such as Windows 98 (perhaps put on there illegally, as far as I know). Plus he also sells computers at times, (which would have software on there illegally.)
Anyway, the point of this post isn’t to detail my dad’s sins, of course. I love my dad, and he’s a very good person. The point is simply to ask a few questions about my responsibility in the matter…
- Would I be doing anything wrong by continuing to give my parents money, even if my father doesn’t report it on his income tax returns? (Of course, I don’t even know if the money I give him would be required to be reported; like I said, I’m clueless as far as that is concerned. I always figured before that (except for the gifts I mentioned above) it was simply “my fair share”. On the other hand, my parents don’t require it of me, either. But I certainly wish to continue giving them the money, as long as I am not doing anything wrong by doing so.
(continued in another post)