Mormon church sued for allegedly using donations to pad its $175B investment fund

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The Mormon church is being sued by three members who claim their combined $348,000 in donations was used to pad the church’s $175 billion investment fund rather than for charitable purposes as they were led to believe.

Plaintiffs claimed in the bombshell suit, filed Tuesday federal court in Salt Lake City, that they were told their donations would do to “various philanthropies, including ‘Humanitarian Relief,’ which provides immediate emergency assistance to victims of disasters.”

Instead, these donations “are permanently invested in accounts it [the church] never uses for any charitable work, so that every year, an enormous portion of the donations are never spent for these — or any — purposes,” according to the suit.

The legal action brings more scrutiny about how the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints handles its vast financial holdings bolstered by so-called “tithing” by members who contribute 10% of their income. The church doesn’t publicly disclose details about its finances.

On its website, the church denotes: “One hundred percent of every dollar donated is used to help those in need without regard to race, religion or ethnic origin,” per the court filing.

Nevertheless, the church has been accused of depositing many of the funds in a church-affiliated investment manager called Ensign Peak, which has amassed a cash reserve valued at as much as $175 billion, according to The Christian Post, which cited a report by The Widow’s Mite.

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