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Give and You Shall Receive: Virus Rescue Plan Offers New Deductions for Charitable Giving

Photo Credit:  ©iStockphoto.com/LIgorko
Photo Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/LIgorko

The $2.2 trillion coronavirus rescue package passed by the Senate this week and approved by the House Friday afternoon helps taxpayers with their charitable giving, and that could be good news for churches and ministries.

Many faith-based non-profits rely on charitable giving from their partners in order to help in their communities throughout the year and in times when disaster strikes.

Giving of one's self and of material possession is found throughout the Old and New Testament scriptures. The Apostle Paul writing to the Corinthians reminds them how God loves a cheerful giver:

"The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work." - 2 Corinthians 9:6-8 


Congress's rescue package is a new tax deduction for giving to charity, which will not be limited to the year 2020. Individuals will reportedly be allowed an extra $300 deduction for charitable donations. This deduction is actually available to taxpayers who don't itemize their deductions at the end of the year. 


The process is simple. You subtract the amount of cash you gave to a qualified charity from your total income which then decreases the amount of taxes you owe. So if you give money to your favorite charity this year, your contribution goes toward the $300 limit. 


There's also another change that allows even more charitable giving. It affects people and companies who give more than $300. 

If you've always wanted to give a lot of money to charity but couldn't due to tax rules, the new bill's changes to the tax law mean you can now do that. Reports about the relief bill indicate that contributors will be able to deduct 100 percent of their gift to a public charity from their 2020 adjusted gross income. For example, if you make $100,000 this year and want to give $50,000 to charity, you can deduct the full amount of your gift from your taxable income. 

This deduction is only for cash gifts to a public charity. It is not available for any household items you may give to a non-profit. 


Many of the nation's faith-based non-profits play an even stronger role in helping our nation's vulnerable individuals and families during this crisis. That's why Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) pushed for the charitable giving amendment to the rescue package. 

"The not-for-profits are the bedrocks social safety net of our society," Lankford told CBN News. "The way we are set up as a culture is families take care of families, there are not-for-profit churches, and entities, and then the government comes in with assistance where needed at that point."

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