"...by 1971, the amount of real and personal property owned by U.S. churches was approx. $110 billion. In New York City alone, the amount was $3 billion in 1989. A 1986 estimate showed religious income in that year of approx. $100 billion, or about five times the income of the five largest corporations in the U.S. All tax free." (see post below)
"An IRS attorney cites a brothel "church," where sisterly love is offered to male parishioners in exchange for donations. In Hardenburgh, New York several years ago, 235 of the 239 property owners in that town were granted religious tax exemption because the properties of the owners were made branches of the mail-order "Universal Life Church." In Wisconsin, hotels, pay parking lots, farms, and communion wafer bakeries are among the church holdings that are tax exempt. Overall, at least $4.2 billion in tax-exempt religious property now exists in that state alone. And the monumental moral corruption of the Catholic Church as evidenced by the many sexual abuse scandals is particularly galling when one contemplates the vast (and covert) wealth of that particular enterprise.
It's a racket, and it costs taxpayers even more money to monitor, uncover and fight the abuse it invites - none of which would be necessary if such unenforceable loopholes in our tax code never existed.
Because it costs you and me billions. We are not talking chump change here. Consider that for every tax dollar a religious organization does not pay, you and I pay it on its behalf. Many are among the wealthiest organizations in the world:"Tax the Churches