Pew parses data collected from the 2012 census that helps paint a picture of modern finances in America. These 4 takeaways are undoubtedly impacting your congregation:

  1. Median household income is stagnant. The most stagnant (at $51,017) in fact, "since the government began collecting such data in 1967."
  2. Since the recession, household headed by seniors are doing a little better than those headed by younger people. "The income patterns of younger and older households have moved in opposite directions in recent years. The median incomes of households headed by those 65 and older have risen during the recession and recovery, continuing their steady rise over more than four decades. By contrast, the median incomes of younger and middle-aged households have declined since the onset of the recession."
  3. Income gaps between racial/ethnic groups are largely unchanged. As one prominent and unfortunate example: "…the gap in median income between white and black households has not changed much over the decades."
  4. "The income gap continues to widen within the total U.S. population, and also within each racial/ethnic groups." The rich are getting richer, the poor poorer. Or to say it in research-speak: "Household income growth has been greater among better-off households than for lower income households."

How are these realities impacting your congregation and your local needs?

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