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Habitual Givers

The combination of attending religious services very frequently and having a high income—a combination common to Habitual givers—is exemplified in Jackie Sawyer. She and her husband make nearly twice as much money as Ryan does (the income difference), but they also attend church frequently. Jackie explains her generous giving:

I think it’s part of my belief system. Again, that none of it is mine and that, therefore, I am obligated to at least give the 10 percent, if not more, because that’s what God asked for... . But I think it comes back from my basic belief system that the Bible tells me I should tithe, and so that’s what I’m gonna do, without asking or questioning.

Though Jackie and her husband do have college degrees (a factor that does differentiate likelihood of being a Habitual giver), we can see how their giving process—in which Jackie says she intentionally does not give much thought to their financial donations—is less connected to higher education than the typical giving process of Planned givers.

George Nettleson also exemplifies how regular religious practice can play a key role in being a Habitual giver. He is a practicing, churchgoing Baptist, and his religious faith clearly underlies his conviction to give generously. George believes in the authority of the Bible and as such thinks that tithing is part of a Christian life. He says, “I want to tithe because faith is part of my lifestyle. . The tithe is a no-brainer. It’s there.” This is a classic Habitual approach to giving based on following the concept of the tithe.

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