As Sultan Obama the Magnificent prepares to act unilaterally on immigration and “relax” US immigration policy for as many as 5 million illegal aliens, completely bypassing Congress and creating another crisis in the process, the Catholic Church, as well as most of the other religious sects stand to gain “a small” windfall in the process.
Now for the record, I have nothing against immigrants personally. Actually, I am an immigrant myself and on more than one occasion. A repeat immigrant one could say. My first experience with being an immigrant was when my parents fled from that other “religion of peace”,, i.e. Atheistic Communism. So no one can accuse me of not feeling their pain.
On the other hand, I have never been a refugee. But then again, I thought that the problem of “being” a refugee, especially from Central and South America was nonexistent. I thought that this problem was resolved when all those Cold Christian (see definitions of Cold/Hot Christians here) military dictators, juntas and assorted strong men were replaced by Hot Christian military dictators, juntas and assorted strongmen. Furthermore, not only were these Hot Christian military dictators, juntas and strongmen supported by Catholic Church circles but in some instances overtly by Catholic Church structures themselves. Bah….let’s go further, some of these Hot Christian military dictators, juntas and strongmen were themselves clerics or former clerics (see here and here). I guess in these cases, the separation of church and state issues aren’t really that significant. And if we want to dabble in the questionable logical fallacy of guilt by association, the one that is all the rage in Modernist church circles these days (see here), I would like to point out that the said Hot Christian strongman alluded to earlier is from the same religious order as the Hot Christian
strongman Archbishop of Tegucigalpa Honduras and present “Vice-Pope” (see here). What is sauce for the goose should likewise be sauce for the gander. “Crypto-Salesianism” anyone? But I digressed…
But this post is titled The Funding Model, so let’s get back to the storyline.
The US Catholic Church stands to make a small windfall from this illegal immigrant amnesty decree. How so, you ask dear reader? Why it’s simple. The Obama administration is not only big-hearted to the illegal aliens themselves but also to their support networks. And one of the mainstay support networks, and also a major beneficiary of the Sultan’s big-heartedness is what has been termed BIG RELIGION (see here). And the Catholic Church is a BIG part of BIG RELIGION. Just how BIG the Catholic Church is as a part of BIG RELIGION can be observed from the website of the US Catholic Bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services (see here). On the US Catholic Churches website we count 10 different programs funded by grants from the US Government. And this is only the US Catholic Bishops’ Conference level. The US dioceses as well as the other Christian and non-Christian sects have their own versions of illegal immigration support programs (see here). So it is not a case of only the US Bishops’ Conference or the US Catholic Church in general.
Which brings me to the subject of this post, namely Funding Models. Historically (and I mean historically), the Catholic Church was funded with alms giving. With the advance of modern society, different funding models arose. In the US, parishioners would not only support the Church through the Sunday collections, but in some cases leave part of their inheritance to the Church as well. And as you can imaging, over time these trust funds, which were the recipients’ of the inheritances became quite sizable. And it is not by a mere quirk of fate that these trust funds are also the targets of the “entities” suing the Catholic Church in the cases of abuse against children and young adults by pederast priests (see here). So in the classical funding model, if the Sunday collection take was a bit weak, the interest income from the trust fund would be used to augment the shortfall, and keep the parish/diocese/US Church in the black. That is the way it works, or rather used to work. I call this the “New Springtime” funding model.
However, with the advent of the great success of the “Spirit of V II” emptying out the churches, and the great success of the “Spirit of Vatican II” vocations (see here) which coincidentally fostered a very friendly environment for clerics who got too “close to their sheep”, it would appear that the US Catholic Church needed a new source of income. And with the Sultan’s immigration strategy and its government funded structures, looks like the US Catholic Church has obtained a new source of funding.
And I say, “Good for them”.
But the only lingering thought I have is this: is this new funding model sustainable?