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ANNVER - Just reading through about the temple recommend answers you gave to one sister who receives welfare. You said those who receive income should be paying tithe but if no income like welfare don't need to pay tithe but still be considered full tithe payers. Now my ward and stake leaders have taught whatever kind of money received to help pay for bills, food etc from either employment or any kind of unemployment benefit then it should be considered income. please i need clarification about this topic.

JOEL - If a person is living totally off church welfare and has no other income then they are exempt from paying tithing. Unemployment benefit is a different situation. Your own money was paid into that system while you were working and so one could argue that if you already paid tithing on that income that was paid into the unemployment benefits system, you don't need to pay tithing on it again if you get some of it back when you are unemployed. However, many people get far more money back from that system than what they paid into it when employed. Therefore one could argue that tithing should be paid on it. If paying tithing on it leaves one without enough money they can receive assistance from the Bishop through the Church welfare system.

A 1970 letter from the First Presidency of the LDS Church stated that, notwithstanding the fact that members should pay one-tenth of their income, "every member of the Church is entitled to make his own decision as to what he thinks he owes the Lord and to make payment accordingly" (Mar. 19, 1970; Doxey, Roy W. Tithing: The Lord's Law. Salt Lake City, 1976).

Whether or not someone pays tithing on unemployment bennefits or other state welfare assistance is up to the individual person. But if your local leaders have been inspired to tell their members that they should pay tithing on such income then you should follow their advise. In the end it's really between you and God on what you should do. Tithe paying is a matter of faith and obedience that results in blessings received.

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