Last week Kathleen Casey-Kirschling retired. Why is this a big deal? Kathleen Casey-Kirschling is the nation’s first baby boomer to retire and receive social security benefits. She was born in Philadelphia on Jan. 1, 1946, at 12:00:01 a.m. This event could mark the end of a program that has been predicted as bankrupt from the beginning. With the baby boomers coming into retirement could bring this program to its knees.
“We’re going to have tens of thousands of baby boomers retiring every week over the next decade or so and that means that by time we get to 2017, just 10 years away, we will no longer be collecting enough payroll taxes to pay Social Security benefits,” said former Minnesota Democratic Rep. Tim Penny.
I think there is a bigger issue then what will happen in the next seven years. This problem is facing the church and the social security members.
Here is something that I never hear anyone talk about.
Inside the church there are several older retired couples that live off of social security. These couples never bought into saving for retirement and fully relied on the government to take care of them until they passed away. The problem with this is the money that is there for social security is not much at all. Meaning these couples or individuals do not have a whole lot of money to live on. Take the bad economy and growing prices of living and the decreasing amount of money coming from social security and a recipe of disaster starts brewing.
In the times that I have worked at a church, money was never really something to be concerned about. It was always there and was used to get what you needed, even if that was a Plasma screen to put in the youth center. My attitude towards money inside the church started to change when I started to hear the stories of families that were losing their house or barely able to afford food for their kids. When I heard stories about people still faithfully giving to the church it changed my attitude and even changed my work habits.
Not only are there families that are struggling to pay their mortgage, their are retirees that are getting $150 a month in social security to live off of and giving 10% to the church. I feel like this is a big issue that continues to go unnoticed inside the church world.
I wonder, with knowing that social security could be paying your ministers (or you the minister) salary, does that change the way the church spends money?