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Monday, August 1, 2011

09: Is our tithing not enough?

Here are some sincere questions…

·         Is our tithing not enough?..or does the church need to own, build and develop more shopping centers?
·         Do we really need to receive profits from worldly commercial projects?  

I have expressed my concerns about the church’s  SL downtown rising project. BILLIONS of dollars have been spent on building upscale condominiums, an outdoor retail shopping mall (complete with a retractable glass roof which converts it to an indoor mall in inclement weather), as well as building restaurants and leasing commercial office space.  We are told that this is ALL in the name of beautifying the surrounding area of the temple grounds… to “preserve” this sacred area and  environment and to kept it “untainted.” form the world. 
Similar reconstruction is underway at the Ogden temple.  The church news reported that the remodel of  Ogden temple and surroundings  “is a huge investment — it basically is the same cost as building a new temple," http://www.ldschurchnews.com/articles/58811/Ogden-temple-renovation-to-include-significant-architectural-face-lift.html

I don’t claim to understand nor should I judge how church finances are spent (both tithing and for profit church businesses). While, I can “somewhat” accept spending money to update and beautiful our sacred temples, and/or support a business whose purpose helps to fulfill our responsibility to bring us to Christ…I have I do have some questions.

I just learned today that the church is developing close to a 40 acre shopping center in West Valley. It was announced this week that, the church owed company Suburban Land Reserve has the green light for development, starting with the construction of the 135,300 square foot anchor store, Target. This shopping center is called Highbury Centre. Deseret News also reported this, but left off the fact that the Church are the developers of the land.

Below is a photo of the report in last week’s The Enterprise, Utah’s Business Journal.



In researching to find out a little more about one more real estate arm of the church, I learned that the President’s name is W Kent Money. (Great name) I didn’t know this either, but a couple of years ago, Deseret News sold their downtown property back to the church through this company. What I don’t understand is that the Deseret News and building was already another one of the church’s subsidiaries.  While I thought the church owned all things in common and is  one happy family, (Zion right).. this must not be the case. This, however, must be similar to internal family sales like an older brother selling his toys to his younger brother. Usually the toy was originally bought by the parents, yet one sibling can make money off of another sibling . This is another topic though. In case you are interested, here is the link to the sale from one arm of the church selling to another arm.

So my question is.. Is not tithing sufficient to do the Lords’ work or is Mormon talking to us when he said in last couple of chapter in the Book of Mormon (8:37)?
For behold, ye do love money, and your substance, and your fine apparel, and the adorning of your churches, more than ye love the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted.”…