Do you get paid for doing your ministry?

Yes, I do receive voluntary support from family and friends who have a burden for Mormon people and others getting the gospel and people in general becoming more educated as to what LDS and other religions and philosophies actually believe (cf. my "Invest" page). The financial support I get frees me up so that I can spend more time getting the gospel out.

LDS generally bring this question up to belittle me, and prop themselves up for having no paid ministry (it is point 6 of the popular LDS tract Seventeen Points of Christ's Church that "His Church has no paid ministry" and even current president Thomas Monson said, "Our church has no paid ministry"). They immediately want to assume that anyone who does what I do must simply do it for the money, so they think why should anyone even bother listening to my message? (As if this is a great way to make money!) But this is really hypocritical when LDS "members are also encouraged to contribute to assist those missionaries who have insufficient finances," and their own General Authorities "receive a modest living allowance" (Daniel H. Ludlow, ed., Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol. 2. [Macmillan, 1992], 508 and 510; also cf. the following LDS source). A recent Mormon Leaks posting demonstrated how much that modest living allowance runs.  I would rather have a General Authority's "modest living allowance" any day in exchange for what I make! LDS also must qualify what they mean about paid ministry, since their mission presidents as well as the church office workers at their headquarters in Salt Lake City get paid. (For more on LDS hypocrisy concerning paid ministry, see Bill McKeever's Mormonism's Paid Ministry, Sandra Tanner's Do Mormon Leaders Receive Financial Support?, and Mormon Disclosures' Pay Lay Missionary.)

Furthermore, the Bible is filled with passages that tell us to support those who "work" in getting the gospel out. When Jesus sent the (unprepared) twelve disciples out to minister, he told them not to bring money, since the "workman is worthy of his meat" (Matthew 10:5-14). Since they freely received, they were to freely give. That is why I don't charge people when I preach the gospel to them, and neither did the Apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 9:18). Paul said very clearly that those who preach should expect to be taken care of materially (1 Cor. 9:7-14). He commended the Philippians for taking care of him through their gifts (Phil. 4:15-18). 

R. M. Sivulka

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