My readers are never at a loss for words when browbeating me about some comment I made. Yesterday I got it from all sides. If readers weren't attacking me for my opinion on children who act too grown, they were reprimanding me for joking about the Williams sisters tithing to the Watchtower Society.
Loyal reader Crysta writes:
Ms. Rose, as a 4th generation Jehovah's Witness, I can firmly assure you that the Williams sisters are under no obligation to give the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society a large chunk of their money. No member is. Any money that is donated is done so in accordance with 2 Corinthians 9:7-- Let each one do just as he has resolved in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
Of the Williams' sisters tithing a good chunk of their income to the church, she writes:
Any amounts donated by the Williams sisters is private, there are no tallies kept, nor special privileges offered to those who donate. They could very well put the money into a contribution box anonymously, without anyone ever knowing whom it came from.
That may be so. But the reality is that all organized religions depend upon their members for financial support, excuse me, tithing.
When I was younger, the church collection plate was passed around during Sunday services, and everyone - including children - were expected to put something in the platter. Nowadays, ATM machines sit by the church door, and in lieu of passing the plate, members are instead given "Tithe Application Forms" forms to fill out.
They then meet with anointed financial advisers who inform them exactly what percentage of their minimum wage earnings they are expected to tithe every Sunday. Those who fall short of their church offerings receive gentle reminders in the form of "financial counseling".
I think it's presumptuous of Crystal to assume the Watchtower Society isn't keeping tabs on how much the Williams sisters earn and what percentage they are tithing. But I could be wrong. I almost always am.