Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

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Hagoth
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Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Hagoth » Sat Mar 11, 2023 7:37 am

I heard a rumor that the church is deleting all member donation records. Probably just a rumor, but it would certainly make sense why they would want to do so with grumblings of class action suits floating around. These days it doesn't matter whether it's legal. They just pay the fine and gaslight the members.

I'm wondering if there is any way for a member to access their own donation history. Your account on the website-formerly-known-as-LDS.org-but-still-answering-to-that-name only lets you go back 10 years.

Personally, I accept sad fact that I must chock my own losses up to the eternal principle of there's one born every minute, but I would still like to know. And you're talking to a guy who once sat down and wrote a check for many tens of thousands of dollars of my future retirement money (my company gave stock instead of a pension or 401k matching).

To add insult to injury they were inexplicably rude to me when I handed it over at the COB, and I came away feeling like they thought I was holding back, or had somehow cheated them. I had naively been expecting big friendly smiles and pats on the back, and that I would come walk away filled with The Spirit for having done the right thing. One born every minute. I have a gnawing feeling I'm going to really miss that money someday when my spleen explodes or something.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Just This Guy
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Just This Guy » Mon Mar 13, 2023 5:35 am

Hagoth wrote:
Sat Mar 11, 2023 7:37 am
I heard a rumor that the church is deleting all member donation records. Probably just a rumor, but it would certainly make sense why they would want to do so with grumblings of class action suits floating around.
I have seen similar rumors floating around. It could be a simple matter of bad timing with some IT issues, but I could also see it as a preemptive strike to make it harder for people to collect info for a class action suit. If it is the later, then that is interesting that it shows they are actually fearful that possible suits could go against them.

However, if it came down to it, I doubt that they actually get rid of any of that info. I could see two situations where they "magically" fine the records again.

1. Threat of fine for not providing info is greater then the potential loss.
2. Lawsuit is brought forward and people estimate their contributions. TSCCC then pops out their records to "prove" the the estimates are wrong and the lawsuit is in bad faith, therefore should be thrown out.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

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Hagoth
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Hagoth » Mon Mar 13, 2023 7:19 am

I guess another way to ask the question is do I have the legal right to request an accounting of all the tithing I have paid in my lifetime, and how would I go about it? I'm sure they have a record of it. Not that I would necessarily go to the effort if it turned out to be a complex bureaucratic kicking-against-the-pricks nightmare (it would probably just depress me anyway!). If the church is legally obligated to divulge that information I have a feeling it would be something like that scene in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:

“But the plans were on display…”
“On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.”
“That’s the display department.”
“With a flashlight.”
“Ah, well, the lights had probably gone.”
“So had the stairs.”
“But look, you found the notice, didn’t you?”
“Yes,” said Arthur, “yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard.”
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Red Ryder
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Red Ryder » Mon Mar 13, 2023 7:51 am

I was able to go back and get my history for the last 14 years…

$0
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

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Just This Guy
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Just This Guy » Mon Mar 13, 2023 8:28 am

Hagoth wrote:
Mon Mar 13, 2023 7:19 am
I guess another way to ask the question is do I have the legal right to request an accounting of all the tithing I have paid in my lifetime, and how would I go about it? I'm sure they have a record of it. Not that I would necessarily go to the effort if it turned out to be a complex bureaucratic kicking-against-the-pricks nightmare (it would probably just depress me anyway!). If the church is legally obligated to divulge that information I have a feeling it would be something like that scene in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:

“But the plans were on display…”
“On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.”
“That’s the display department.”
“With a flashlight.”
“Ah, well, the lights had probably gone.”
“So had the stairs.”
“But look, you found the notice, didn’t you?”
“Yes,” said Arthur, “yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard.”
Ever thought about going into advertising? ;)

Red Ryder wrote:
Mon Mar 13, 2023 7:51 am
I was able to go back and get my history for the last 14 years…

$0
Yeah, mine is similar. I suspect that if something were to go though and lawsuits were to happen, I haven't paid in so long that I am likely outside a statute of limitation.
"The story so far: In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

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RubinHighlander
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by RubinHighlander » Mon Mar 13, 2023 9:01 am

Hagoth wrote:
Sat Mar 11, 2023 7:37 am
To add insult to injury they were inexplicably rude to me when I handed it over at the COB, and I came away feeling like they thought I was holding back, or had somehow cheated them. I had naively been expecting big friendly smiles and pats on the back, and that I would come walk away filled with The Spirit for having done the right thing. One born every minute. I have a gnawing feeling I'm going to really miss that money someday when my spleen explodes or something.
I would never rely on TSCC to provide any reliable historical financial records to infidels like me. But I have my IRS records to prove where my donations went to. I would think it would reflect even more negatively on TSCC (if they do get into this class action with members and former members) if it was shown that their records do not match those from the IRS.
“Sir,' I said to the universe, 'I exist.' 'That,' said the universe, 'creates no sense of obligation in me whatsoever.”
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Hagoth
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Hagoth » Mon Mar 13, 2023 1:26 pm

I can look at the 10 years that are available via my membership account and spot the exact moment I said, wow, this is all bullsh*t!

On February 5, 2017 there is a payment of $0.00 with the status "Reversed," in red. It is the only transaction that is not marked "completed." This should have been when my next tithing payment was logged. There are no more tithing amounts listed after that day. I have no memory of doing anything to reverse it, or even what that means, but that appears to be the day I chose to burn at the Last Day rather than help Mormon Jesus buy more land in Florida.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Red Ryder
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Mar 14, 2023 10:38 am

Hagoth wrote:
Mon Mar 13, 2023 1:26 pm
I can look at the 10 years that are available via my membership account and spot the exact moment I said, wow, this is all bullsh*t!

On February 5, 2017 there is a payment of $0.00 with the status "Reversed," in red. It is the only transaction that is not marked "completed." This should have been when my next tithing payment was logged. There are no more tithing amounts listed after that day. I have no memory of doing anything to reverse it, or even what that means, but that appears to be the day I chose to burn at the Last Day rather than help Mormon Jesus buy more land in Florida.
Ha ha ha! Well happy belated anniversary!

It must be documented which direction you’re following the covenant path.
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

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wtfluff
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by wtfluff » Tue Mar 14, 2023 11:10 am

It would be interesting to know how far "back" LD$-Inc.™ keeps records of the donations of us peasants.

Is there some sort of law where they have to keep a certain number of years on record for tax (exempt) purposes?

If they do in fact keep peasant records for eternity, I'm sure it would cost a lot of $$$ in legal fees to gain access, if it is even possible.

Personally, I don't want to know. Even though I stopped paying my Polygamy Palace/Exaltation dues quite a while before I completely stopped believing, I'm pretty sure a complete record of my donations would only cause me more anger. I've got plenty of that to last a lifetime. :cry:
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Mormorrisey
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Mormorrisey » Thu Mar 16, 2023 9:43 am

So I found this interesting, so I went on my donations page to take a look. It looks like what is disappearing is your official tax receipt - not the actual record of your donations, that seems to be intact, at least in a ten year interval.

I was able to go back as far 2013 and have a look. Thanks a bunch, everybody. That's where I realized I gave the church nearly six figures over the last ten years. Now I'm going to be pretty bitchy for the rest of the day. :lol:

At least I can see where I went from gross to net. That's some consolation.
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stuck
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by stuck » Fri Mar 17, 2023 11:32 am

Red Ryder wrote:
Mon Mar 13, 2023 7:51 am
I was able to go back and get my history for the last 14 years…

$0
It's interesting to see where I stopped paying tithing--mostly this past year. Unfortunately I lied about tithing to my wife recently. But I didn't want to have the conversation where I would have to explain that since I paid on my gross for many years, that I shouldn't have to pay anymore--especially if you look at how tithing was originally paid (10% on surplus). Red, did you ever have to explain why you stopped paying tithing to your wife?

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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Red Ryder » Fri Mar 17, 2023 3:17 pm

stuck wrote:
Fri Mar 17, 2023 11:32 am
Red, did you ever have to explain why you stopped paying tithing to your wife?
I did. As a new college grad I started working as an auditor working for one of the Big 4 accounting firms. I started auditing numerous churches and other non-profit entities which required audited financial statements because they had reporting requirements, bank loans, etc.

I spent a week auditing a large local Baptist church and we got i to a discussion about the church’s coffee stand. It generated about $400K a year in coffee sales revenue which supported their overall budget.

The conversation went like this:

Can you believe they have a coffee stand at church?
Can you believe it makes $400K?
Can you believe they pay their pastors and youth leaders?
The true church of Jesus Christ has a lay leadership.
We don’t pay our people.
We’re so much better than them.
We don’t have to require an audit because WE don’t have debt as a church. We’re so much better than the Baptist! We have the RESTORED gospel!

Shortly after that, I fell into my faith transition.
Read a ton of bad experiences from former members who were angry about prior sex abuse hush money paid out to keep victims quiet through Non-disclosure agreements etc.

As an auditor I realized that I had no way to ever read a complete consolidated church financial statement. You could find bits and pieces here and there. As a professional that pissed me off. As a recent human being, it pissed me off even more to realize the church could buy silence and protect itself at any cost. I became extremely angry.

I also happened to be the ward finance clerk at the time. It was near tithing settlement time and I could see members pay catch up amounts at the end of the year. I could see our ward generated nearly $3M in tithing and send 99.9999999% of it to SLC. I saw families struggle to pay their bills begging the church to help out only to receive a passive aggressive response from the bishop. Have you asked family members for help? How often do you eat out? Also you still have cable? What about that new car? They didn’t have a new car. What about working overtime? There were 99 questions asked in order to deny helping to pay a medical bill or a missed house payment. Yet these same members asking for help had already donated money to the church. I remained extremely angry.

Then one day I said enough is enough. If the church needs my money to keep the lights on… call me. I’ll help out.

If the church needs my money to help out a needy family…. call me. I’ll help out.

If the church needs my money for any legitimate reason… call me. I’ll help out.

When you realize the church is a Billion dollar corporation that focuses on real estate portfolios, investment schemes, and self preservation schemes to avoid lawsuits, you realize you don’t need to donate anymore.

I’d already stopped attending the temple. I had already stopped wearing the authorized pattern. I had pretty much figured I would stop paying monthly. If I felt different at year end I would pay to catch up.

Right before tithing settlement I told her that I could no longer pay in good conscious. For all the reasons listed above. I promised her that I wouldn’t leave her by herself at tithing settlement. So we went with our young kids. They got candy after the bishop explained that god gave us 10 pieces of candy and only required us to give 1 back. He asked them if they were full tithe payers. They said yes after confirming they didn’t have a job and didn’t make any money.

Then he asked the wife if she was a full tithe layer. She said yes. She was a stay at home mom with a few side hustles. Declared full status.

Then he asks me.

I said I was part. Stopped paying during the year. He assumed we were having financial problems. Offered to be of assistance after we relied on family first of course.

On the way home she was mad that I didn’t clarify to the bishop that I refused to pay rather than we couldn’t.

That continued for a few years. She was able to get her recommend because she paid on her income. She liked that she could get her nails done as we had more disposable income. She liked that our savings account and 401K were growing. She hated that she was going to the temple alone.

Overtime I stopped going to tithing settlement with her and she went alone and didn’t take the kids.

She’s currently questioning the church and tithing may fall to donating to other causes. She’s pretty pissed off about the SEC 13F reporting scandal and the church.

So my advice:
DON’T LIE TO YOUR WIFE!

Be honest and tell her WHY you don’t want to pay.
If she is a SAHM, don’t offer to let her pay 5% on your income. That just causes resentment. Plus that’s 5% the church doesn’t deserve. Your family needs it more.
Offer a truce to save your tithing in your savings account. That if you change your mind you will pay at end of year.

Be honest. She will respect that even if she doesn’t like the decision to stop paying. She will get over that easier than you lying to you.
“It always devolves to Pantaloons. Always.” ~ Fluffy

“I switched baristas” ~ Lady Gaga

“Those who do not move do not notice their chains.” ~Rosa Luxemburg

stuck
Posts: 308
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by stuck » Fri Mar 17, 2023 4:02 pm

Red Ryder wrote:
Fri Mar 17, 2023 3:17 pm
stuck wrote:
Fri Mar 17, 2023 11:32 am
Red, did you ever have to explain why you stopped paying tithing to your wife?
I did. As a new college grad I started working as an auditor working for one of the Big 4 accounting firms. I started auditing numerous churches and other non-profit entities which required audited financial statements because they had reporting requirements, bank loans, etc.

I spent a week auditing a large local Baptist church and we got i to a discussion about the church’s coffee stand. It generated about $400K a year in coffee sales revenue which supported their overall budget.

The conversation went like this:

Can you believe they have a coffee stand at church?
Can you believe it makes $400K?
Can you believe they pay their pastors and youth leaders?
The true church of Jesus Christ has a lay leadership.
We don’t pay our people.
We’re so much better than them.
We don’t have to require an audit because WE don’t have debt as a church. We’re so much better than the Baptist! We have the RESTORED gospel!

Shortly after that, I fell into my faith transition.
Read a ton of bad experiences from former members who were angry about prior sex abuse hush money paid out to keep victims quiet through Non-disclosure agreements etc.

As an auditor I realized that I had no way to ever read a complete consolidated church financial statement. You could find bits and pieces here and there. As a professional that pissed me off. As a recent human being, it pissed me off even more to realize the church could buy silence and protect itself at any cost. I became extremely angry.

I also happened to be the ward finance clerk at the time. It was near tithing settlement time and I could see members pay catch up amounts at the end of the year. I could see our ward generated nearly $3M in tithing and send 99.9999999% of it to SLC. I saw families struggle to pay their bills begging the church to help out only to receive a passive aggressive response from the bishop. Have you asked family members for help? How often do you eat out? Also you still have cable? What about that new car? They didn’t have a new car. What about working overtime? There were 99 questions asked in order to deny helping to pay a medical bill or a missed house payment. Yet these same members asking for help had already donated money to the church. I remained extremely angry.

Then one day I said enough is enough. If the church needs my money to keep the lights on… call me. I’ll help out.

If the church needs my money to help out a needy family…. call me. I’ll help out.

If the church needs my money for any legitimate reason… call me. I’ll help out.

When you realize the church is a Billion dollar corporation that focuses on real estate portfolios, investment schemes, and self preservation schemes to avoid lawsuits, you realize you don’t need to donate anymore.

I’d already stopped attending the temple. I had already stopped wearing the authorized pattern. I had pretty much figured I would stop paying monthly. If I felt different at year end I would pay to catch up.

Right before tithing settlement I told her that I could no longer pay in good conscious. For all the reasons listed above. I promised her that I wouldn’t leave her by herself at tithing settlement. So we went with our young kids. They got candy after the bishop explained that god gave us 10 pieces of candy and only required us to give 1 back. He asked them if they were full tithe payers. They said yes after confirming they didn’t have a job and didn’t make any money.

Then he asked the wife if she was a full tithe layer. She said yes. She was a stay at home mom with a few side hustles. Declared full status.

Then he asks me.

I said I was part. Stopped paying during the year. He assumed we were having financial problems. Offered to be of assistance after we relied on family first of course.

On the way home she was mad that I didn’t clarify to the bishop that I refused to pay rather than we couldn’t.

That continued for a few years. She was able to get her recommend because she paid on her income. She liked that she could get her nails done as we had more disposable income. She liked that our savings account and 401K were growing. She hated that she was going to the temple alone.

Overtime I stopped going to tithing settlement with her and she went alone and didn’t take the kids.

She’s currently questioning the church and tithing may fall to donating to other causes. She’s pretty pissed off about the SEC 13F reporting scandal and the church.

So my advice:
DON’T LIE TO YOUR WIFE!

Be honest and tell her WHY you don’t want to pay.
If she is a SAHM, don’t offer to let her pay 5% on your income. That just causes resentment. Plus that’s 5% the church doesn’t deserve. Your family needs it more.
Offer a truce to save your tithing in your savings account. That if you change your mind you will pay at end of year.

Be honest. She will respect that even if she doesn’t like the decision to stop paying. She will get over that easier than you lying to you.
That's awesome Red! I will have to come clean with her and have my reasons to back it up when she asks about it again. But yeah it helps that I have the recent scandal to discuss also. She hasn't mentioned it to me yet.

Cnsl1
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Re: Is it possible to get your donation history from the church?

Post by Cnsl1 » Sat Mar 18, 2023 12:56 am

Working together doing our taxes, I realized my wife has been paying tithing. She pays a small monthly amount from her small home business income. She handles the family finances and I'd previously asked her to please not pay one cent of my money to the church, so she hasn't. She's no longer TBM. She has not had a temple recommend in several years. She still attends and holds a small calling, but definitely does not obey many of the Mormon commandments and does not typically wear the garments except sometimes on Sundays.

So today I asked her why. Was she thinking of getting a temple recommend again? No. Did she think the church needs her money? Of course not. Afraid not to pay? No. Why? She feels it's the right thing to do.

I can respect that, or could respect that from a true believing member, and I agree that giving a portion of your surplus is a good thing.. but how about giving to someone who could really use it. Her little bit means nothing to a billion dollar corporation, but to a small local organization it could mean a ton. Why not give to make a difference? I couldn't understand her logic when she said she'd rather let the church decide what to do with it, yet knows that the church has more than enough and invests the surplus to make billions and does not use that for any humanitarian purpose. She also said she feels we are blessed when she's paid it. So maybe partially it's fear? How about test it. Give the same amount somewhere else and see if the blessings continue.

She agreed to consider it, but I think old habits are hard to break, and years of programming is hard to de-program even when you don't really seem to believe everything you used to.

I told her I'd support whatever she wants to do with her money, but that since we share finances, file jointly, and are together legally on all the big items like house, I felt I could question her financial decisions, as she should mine.

It didn't make me feel good when she said she'd pay tithing on my income, which is substantially more than hers, if I asked her to... or would be, had I not specifically told her not to. We'd talked about this years ago and I thought we were on the same page. I guess we are not.

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