“He sat down opposite the treasury
and observed how the crowd put money into the treasury.
Many rich people put in large sums.
A poor widow also came and put in two small coins worth a few cents.
Calling his disciples to himself, he said to them,
‘Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more
than all the other contributors to the treasury.
For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth,
but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had,
her whole livelihood.’”
“All they do is talk about money!” This is a common (not the most common, though) reason people stop going to church or stop being a part of a faith community. What I think they generally mean is, “Whenever they talk about money, all they do is ask for money!” Which I think is translated to, “All they want is my money!” I can imagine the priest, who has very little training in finances, faced with the stress of a major bill, debt, repair, or payroll crisis resorting to repeated guilt ridden appeals for more money. It happens. Nobody wants to be the leader who has to close a parish or or fail to sustain facilities because of a lack of money. It is a real pressure and I’m sure there are real experiences of this happening.