Welcome Relief: Clergy Housing Allowance Upheld

Welcome News

The clergy housing allowance is safe for now.  Last week, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a Wisconsin federal district court, which struck down the venerable clergy housing allowance.  As a result of the Seventh Circuit’s decision, clergypersons who serve churches, synagogues, mosques, and other worshipping groups, may continue to exempt certain parts of their compensation from federal income tax. 

Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Cert. Denial: Tacit Refusal with Massive Implications

The Supreme Court of the United States recently refused to hear federal appeals from five states concerning the legality of same-sex marriage.  As explained in the Chicago Tribune, “When the Supreme Court declines to hear a case — known as "denying cert" — it can seem anticlimactic.  Instead of dramatic oral arguments and protests outside the court, we get a written notification that the decision of an appeals court will stand.  But sometimes, denying cert is an earthquake.  And that's what happened last week.  The court denied cert in same-sex marriage cases from Indiana, Wisconsin, Utah,

Defying the IRS Preaching Ban: Good Politics?

On Sunday, October 5, 2014, hundreds of religious leaders preached politics from the pulpit -- part of a now annual tradition and nationwide protest against the IRS’s ban on nonprofit involvement in political campaign activity. Known as “Pulpit Freedom Sunday,” the event is organized by the Alliance Defending Freedom. While tax practitioners, scholars, and religious leaders often question the IRS ban’s constitutionality, active violation of the ban warrants great caution and discretion.             Believers need not – and should not be required to – cabin their faith, but they need to proc