Tithing & Alms giving?


Not sure if this is the right place to post this, but here it goes. What is the difference between tithing and alms giving? What are we responsible for? Answers would be greatly appreciated:).


I believe tithing refers to giving 10% of your income to the church. Alms giving doesn’t have a set amount, and it isn’t limited to one’s church.




Material help given to the needy, prompted by Divine charity.


1 : to pay or give a tenth part of especially for the support of the church


So the alms giving would be above and beyond the tithing? Is that correct?


From the Code of Canon Law:
Canon 222 §1 Christ’s faithful have the obligation to provide for the needs of the Church, so that the Church has available to it those things which are necessary for divine worship, for apostolic and charitable work and for the worthy support of its ministers.
§2 They are also obliged to promote social justice and, mindful of the Lord’s precept, to help the poor from their own resources.
Notice strict dollar amounts or percentages are not specified.


Alms giving would be a different beast entirely. Alms giving would be money to charities, homeless shelters, etc.

Tithing would be money (10% of your income) given directly to the church. If the church then disseminated some of the funds to charitable organizations, so be it, but the two are distinct things.


You could give alms and have it less than what tithing would be so I guess the answer would be no.:shrug:


I think the OP was suggesting that tithing does not “cover” our duty to give alms, which, based on the Canon Law quote someone added above, would seem to be correct.

Almsgiving would be done in addition to whatever contribution one makes to the Church.



octrine. In AD250 Cyprian tried unsuccessfully to implement it. Augustine and Ambrose’s concept was more like Acts 2 and 4 than Old Testament tithing because they practiced asceticism and monasticism. The council of Macon introduced it in AD585 but it was not legally collected until AD777 under Charlemagne. And tithing was originally only food from church lands.

The New Catholic Encyclopedia says: “No law of tithing is found in the New Testament, although the principle of church support is laid down.” And the online 1912 Catholic Encyclopedia says, “In the beginning provision was supplied by the spontaneous support of the faithful.”

I say, do not worry about the percentage. Givie from your heart from the best of your ability even to the point of sacrificial giving

Russell Earl Kelly, Ph.D…


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