A Giving USA Foundation study says religious groups reported a 0.7 percent decrease in donations last year, a contrast from the 5.5 percent increase in 2008.
Congregations accounted for 33 percent of the total $303 billion in contributions in 2009 — the third year in a row religious donations have exceeded $100 billion.
Total donations for all charitable groups in 2009 were down by 3.6 percent. Foundations lost $31 billion in 2009, an 8 percent decrease from 2008. Donations to public organizations fell by $22.7 billion (4.6 percent decline) while international aid organizations received about $9 billion, a 6 percent increase.
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