A Legacy of Giving: Tithing’s Enduring Presence in the Black Community

Tithing is viewed as an act of love and a fundamental practice in the Black spiritual community. Rooted in deeply held religious beliefs, it is seen as a way to honor God's blessings and contribute to the greater good of the community.

A Legacy of Giving: Tithing’s Enduring Presence in the Black Community
Via Unsplash

Maya Angelou once said she believed that giving liberates the giver's soul. What could be more liberating than tithing? A profound sense of love moves us to tithe to our churches, but it goes beyond that.

Tithing, as we know it today, came from old testament customs. Believers were and still are, required to give ten percent of their wealth to the church to further the teachings of Jesus. While religious scholars debate the validity of tithing today, the practice helped support Black communities.

Jesus's message of love, tolerance, and compassion for your neighbor set ablaze a roaring wave of giving. What better way to have understanding for and love our neighbors than to give to and support them when they need it most? These ideals however, aren't limited to Christianity.

African spiritualism has always centered offerings of value in its practices. From offerings to the gods and ancestors to potlucks, giving something of value is a cornerstone of our rituals. It's a way to connect, support, and show love for those around us and those who guide us here and in the heavens.

Giving holds a special place in Black culture, too. It's a profound tradition encompassing self-love and love for one's community. It is an act of sacrifice, a display of devotion and commitment to an ideal greater than oneself.

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