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Are all the leaders rich?

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Just as not making much should as well.  Osteen is certainly very wealthy.  And not all of it is from donations or "tithing".  He knows how to invest it.  Does it bother me when people that far up the ladder make that much money?  Not really.  I won't tell them how to handle their money, but I know if I had that kind of money I would do things different than him.

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23 minutes ago, pwrfrk said:

Just as not making much should as well.  Osteen is certainly very wealthy.  And not all of it is from donations or "tithing".  He knows how to invest it.  Does it bother me when people that far up the ladder make that much money?  Not really.  I won't tell them how to handle their money, but I know if I had that kind of money I would do things different than him.

It doesn't bother me either but it does bother others. And their concerns are valid. If you are a blue collar guy struggling to make ends meet and you see a preacher/church leader making huge amounts of money, you might think differently. 

Again, it doesn't bother me. But I'm not struggling to feed my family- and yes, not everyone who is struggling would think how I'm describing. But some will. 

Edited by MormonGator

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5 hours ago, MormonGator said:

It doesn't bother me either but it does bother others. And their concerns are valid. If you are a blue collar guy struggling to make ends meet and you see a preacher/church leader making huge amounts of money, you might think differently. 

Again, it doesn't bother me. But I'm not struggling to feed my family- and yes, not everyone who is struggling would think how I'm describing. But some will. 

I think within the church the issue for most people would have less to do with the apostles making more than they do, but that it seems to at least on the surface go against what our scriptures teach.

Consider:

Mosiah 18:26

  26 And the priests were not to depend upon the people for their support; but for their labor they were to receive the grace of God, that they might wax strong in the Spirit, having the knowledge of God, that they might teach with power and authority from God.

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/tg/ministry-unpaid?lang=eng

So to a certain extent I think the fact that church leaders get paid at all seems wrong to people. On the flip side, I can see how they would need to have some money to get by in our society - so what to do? With Stipends being reported anywhere from 90,000 to 200,000 annually though I can definitely see where many people consider that excessive. The average income in my home town is $70,000 according to the most recent census I looked at, and that is skewed upward by the few who have a lot of money whereas most people work full time jobs for quite a bit less. Of course living expenses in Utah are apt to be different and so on - but I totally understand people thinking that the amount is more than just comfortable living expenses.

My curiosity is, does this so called pay help to cover things like flying around the world to perform in their callings or do those expenses get sent to church HQ? If they are getting paid amounts that seem high but really just cover the expenses of them performing their callings, I have no problem with that, and I would hope others could see that too. However, if this is in addition to anything else it's admittedly a little troubling based on the idea of lay ministry and priestcraft. Perhaps they wouldn't need to take a vow of poverty, but they certainly don't need to live like kings either.

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9 hours ago, MormonGator said:

It doesn't bother me either but it does bother others. And their concerns are valid. If you are a blue collar guy struggling to make ends meet and you see a preacher/church leader making huge amounts of money, you might think differently. 

Again, it doesn't bother me. But I'm not struggling to feed my family- and yes, not everyone who is struggling would think how I'm describing. But some will. 

That's what I don't get.  I struggle to make ends meet.  And I see someone like Osteen making money hand over fist, which really is none of my business how he does it, all I do is shake my head thinking maybe I oughta change jobs.  Then I reflect on when I was a pastor, and I remember the stress one has, the trials, the tribulations, all the good stuff and all the bad stuff...and I end up thanking God that I came back to the LDS.  I wasn't in it to make money, but if I was I'd still be in the poor house.  You see, it takes a certain type of person to handle the cameras and attention.  I'm not that type of person.  And I'm not saying that he's the average tele-evangelist, because he is doing very well.  At the same time, if I had a nice wad of dough come into my possession, count on me taking Dave Ramsey's courses!  In fact, I should be doing that already....

Anyhow, for all we know that could be how Osteen is making so much money.

 

Edited by pwrfrk

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6 hours ago, pwrfrk said:

That's what I don't get.  I struggle to make ends meet.  And I see someone like Osteen making money hand over fist, which really is none of my business how he does it, all I do is shake my head thinking maybe I oughta change jobs.  Then I reflect on when I was a pastor, and I remember the stress one has, the trials, the tribulations, all the good stuff and all the bad stuff...and I end up thanking God that I came back to the LDS.  I wasn't in it to make money, but if I was I'd still be in the poor house.  You see, it takes a certain type of person to handle the cameras and attention.  I'm not that type of person.  And I'm not saying that he's the average tele-evangelist, because he is doing very well.  At the same time, if I had a nice wad of dough come into my possession, count on me taking Dave Ramsey's courses!  In fact, I should be doing that already....

Anyhow, for all we know that could be how Osteen is making so much money.

 

 

10 hours ago, SpiritDragon said:

I think within the church the issue for most people would have less to do with the apostles making more than they do, but that it seems to at least on the surface go against what our scriptures teach.

Consider:

Mosiah 18:26

  26 And the priests were not to depend upon the people for their support; but for their labor they were to receive the grace of God, that they might wax strong in the Spirit, having the knowledge of God, that they might teach with power and authority from God.

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/tg/ministry-unpaid?lang=eng

So to a certain extent I think the fact that church leaders get paid at all seems wrong to people. On the flip side, I can see how they would need to have some money to get by in our society - so what to do? With Stipends being reported anywhere from 90,000 to 200,000 annually though I can definitely see where many people consider that excessive. The average income in my home town is $70,000 according to the most recent census I looked at, and that is skewed upward by the few who have a lot of money whereas most people work full time jobs for quite a bit less. Of course living expenses in Utah are apt to be different and so on - but I totally understand people thinking that the amount is more than just comfortable living expenses.

My curiosity is, does this so called pay help to cover things like flying around the world to perform in their callings or do those expenses get sent to church HQ? If they are getting paid amounts that seem high but really just cover the expenses of them performing their callings, I have no problem with that, and I would hope others could see that too. However, if this is in addition to anything else it's admittedly a little troubling based on the idea of lay ministry and priestcraft. Perhaps they wouldn't need to take a vow of poverty, but they certainly don't need to live like kings either.

You guys make great points, and like I said, don't have a problem with the amount of money leaders make or how the church spends it.

But, I have spoken to some people who do have a problem with it. 

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11 hours ago, SpiritDragon said:

I think within the church the issue for most people would have less to do with the apostles making more than they do, but that it seems to at least on the surface go against what our scriptures teach.

Consider:

Mosiah 18:26

  26 And the priests were not to depend upon the people for their support; but for their labor they were to receive the grace of God, that they might wax strong in the Spirit, having the knowledge of God, that they might teach with power and authority from God.

https://www.lds.org/scriptures/tg/ministry-unpaid?lang=eng

So to a certain extent I think the fact that church leaders get paid at all seems wrong to people. On the flip side, I can see how they would need to have some money to get by in our society - so what to do? With Stipends being reported anywhere from 90,000 to 200,000 annually though I can definitely see where many people consider that excessive. The average income in my home town is $70,000 according to the most recent census I looked at, and that is skewed upward by the few who have a lot of money whereas most people work full time jobs for quite a bit less. Of course living expenses in Utah are apt to be different and so on - but I totally understand people thinking that the amount is more than just comfortable living expenses.

My curiosity is, does this so called pay help to cover things like flying around the world to perform in their callings or do those expenses get sent to church HQ? If they are getting paid amounts that seem high but really just cover the expenses of them performing their callings, I have no problem with that, and I would hope others could see that too. However, if this is in addition to anything else it's admittedly a little troubling based on the idea of lay ministry and priestcraft. Perhaps they wouldn't need to take a vow of poverty, but they certainly don't need to live like kings either.

Hmmm...

My thoughts...

it's actually somewhat over 120K today, and that's the baseline.  It's not something that is paid, it is actually more like an allowance.  The 12 (and other General Authorites) are currently under the Law of Consecration (unlike others who may think they are because they pay tithing...it's actually a different thing entirely).  This is a base line allowance.  They do not have to use all of it, they can return what they do not need, as well as other things.  They also have things that are covered as well such as travel expenses, expenses paid on location (and the church tries to save on this at times by having General Authorities stay in members homes instead of hotel costs and other things at times).  They also have their medical expenses covered. 

It used to be that they had General Authorities on Boards and other items where they drew stipends and money from that.  It was supporting themselves in that manner, but at the same time, as the Church grew larger, made it hard for them to fulfill other duties as Special Witnesses.  Thus, a move was more towards having them live a more complete Law of Consecration.  Young Missionaries also live under this Law in part as well, though their funds are normally a little more limited.  At the end of their mission the idea is that they would also return the extra funds, but not all of them decide to do this.  It is up to each individual I suppose.

Tithing paid is NOT going for welfare.  If you read up on it, it was for the support of the church (which would include it's leaders).  They are expected to present a form of decency in what they wear (they should wear clothes/suits that are something that will make them at least presentable to various leaders, and various other expenses that are necessary).  However, at the end of the day it may be a highball just to guarantee they have what they need, but they can also return what they don't need to the church if they wish.  Some also pay offerings and other things even prior to this. 

Just my thoughts on the specific item you raise up.

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When you're a vital part of an executive team of a worldwide organization with enough power to have an influence in various ways, maybe even impact stock prices here or there, get world leaders to do this or that, you get paid millions.  The head boss person gets paid millions, his dozen or so executive VPs get paid slightly smaller millions. Everyone has golden parachutes and severance packages and retirement plans and stock grants, and have fancy homes in rich areas.  

The leaders of our church, lead such a powerful organization.   They meet with world leaders, move resources around for various projects, have an impact on a local, state, and even occasionally national level.  Our leaders make about as much as a pastor with a medium/large congregation in a medium/large midwestern town.  They have no retirement.  They are expected to maintain a rigorous travel schedule that grows old very fast for any human.  They spend much of their time attending the same half dozen meetings over and over again.  Until they die.  No sane person seeking to climb to higher levels of career success would want to come within a million miles of getting sucked into a GA calling.  In fact, such callings represent the end of growing in career success. 

There really is no comparison.  The only reasonable explanation for our church's leaders doing what they do, is they believe in what they are doing. 

Edited by NeuroTypical

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23 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

Yup.  Between you guys and professional pilots I'm not sure who is more critiqued. 

I don't remember the last time I heard a pilot get criticized.

On the other hand last week I got a complaint for giving a parking warning because the car in front of the house was blocking the snow plow...

 

Edited by mirkwood

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2 hours ago, mirkwood said:

I don't remember the last time I heard a pilot get criticized.

It's obviously not a contest, and no one would say that your job isn't difficult.  Virtually everything a pilot does is highly, incredibly scrutinized by the FAA, his company, etc.  Like you guys. Also, if a pilot is involved in an accident, his/her actions are looked over with a fine tooth comb. If one of you guys is involved in an accident, your actions are looked over with a fine tooth comb. So there are a lot of similarities. 

Edited by MormonGator

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The few GA that I know are not rich.  They were upper middle class when they retired and probably a net worth of a bit over a million.  And for a retired person, I would not claim that as rich.

I suspect most GA from the US are in the same boat...  a net worth between 1-5 million.  Which I would not call rich.  That is just what the upper middle class has when they retire, if they did their finances well.

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