Friday, September 23, 2016


Posted by Tim

In today's Voice of the People, Fr. Ken Carriveau attempts to excuse the archdiocese's absence of testimony on Bill 326-33 by saying that to do so would have been against "federal guidelines" banning political activity for tax-exempt organizations"
"I suggest that it is not a “case of fear mongering,” but rather, as in my case, a matter of following federal guidelines. Confusion over the ban on political activity by tax-exempt organizations has existed ever since it was first imposed by Congress in 1954."
It's funny to see Carriveau reference "confusion over the ban on political activity by tax-exempt organizations" when Carriveau himself is even more confused. He apparently does not know the difference between political activity and legislative activity. The IRS itself makes this distinction:

Political activities and legislative activities (commonly referred to as lobbying) are two different things and are subject to two different sets of rules and have different consequences of exceeding the limitations. 
Bill 326-33 has NOTHING to do with political activity. It is, of course, a legislative activity, and non-profit organizations are NOT prohibited from it:
In general, no organization may qualify for section 501(c)(3) status if a substantial part of its activities is attempting to influence legislation (commonly known as lobbying).  A 501(c)(3) organization may engage in some lobbying, but too much lobbying activity risks loss of tax-exempt status. ...
Organizations may, however, involve themselves in issues of public policy without the activity being considered as lobbying.  For example, organizations may conduct educational meetings, prepare and distribute educational materials, or otherwise consider public policy issues in an educational manner without jeopardizing their tax-exempt status. 
As you can see, the only restriction on "attempting to influence legislation" is that a tax exempt organization may not make it a substantial part of its activities."

In addition, churches are further exempt because they are not required to obtain tax exempt status because THE ARE AUTOMATICALLY TAX EXEMPT. From IRS Publication 557:
Some organizations are not required to file Form 1023 or 1023-EZ. These include: Churches, interchurch organizations of local units of a church, conventions or associations of churches, or integrated auxiliaries of a church, such as a men's or women's organization, religious school, mission society, or youth group. Any organization (other than a private foundation) normally having annual gross receipts of not more than $5,000 (see Gross receipts test, later). These organizations are exempt automatically if they meet the requirements of section 501(c)(3).
The completely ridiculous thing about Carriveau's letter is of course is his point that the church did not weigh in on Bill 326-33 prior to its passing the legislature because of this supposed "ban" on "political activity," but apparently the church has no problem violating that "ban" after it has passed the legislature by using its church pulpits to lobby the governor to veto the bill!!! 

So let me get this straight. It would have been wrong for the church to use a public hearing to oppose the bill but it is okay to use a Sunday homily to do so. GEEZ!!! That is really too funny if not incredibly sad since it evinces the intellectual capacity of a person entrusted, as a priest, with our salvation!

Of course, many of us remember the many years "the church" had no problem with turning its pulpits into podiums to lobby against the several gambling initiatives. Where was this supposed "ban" then.

The bottom line is that Carriveau does NOT know what he is talking about, or he DOES know, and like so many of our other clergy now, are using the "Fr." in front of their name to purposely mislead us. 

We've had enough of their lies or ignorance. You can decide for yourself which it is. 


  1. WE'VE HAD ENOUGH OF THEIR LIES OR IGNORANCE. YOU CAN DECIDE FOR YOURSELF WHICH IT IS - If there was a button to press for choice - like a test:

    1 - Lies
    2- Ignorance
    3 - Both (Both 1 & 2)

    I will click on Number #3 - Both!

    1. i choose
      4. Invincible ignorance

  2. And (Fr.) Carriveau, when you meet him, loves to brag about all his high positions, achievements and degrees. Yet, so ignorant.

  3. Sometimes the most "educated" people can say the dumbest things. Do your research, Ken, before you start mouthing off. The Church has long been "lobbying" from the pulpit for as long as my memory serves from birth control, abortion, gambling, homosexuality, gay marriage, etc. Is sexual abuse any different? I just don't buy into your logic.

  4. Ken, you are coming closer to the Lord. What account would you give of your position here against holding institutions liable for child sexual and other abuse? Remember your carnal days? Be guided accordingly.

  5. this really is perplexing coming from fr carriveau, who holds a doctorate and was a professor before entering the priesthood. this topic isn't very hard to understand, and it's not obscure either. maybe his age is getting the better of him?

    slightly off-topic but relevant: this all supposedly started when two lawyers gave a presentation to the clergy. have we heard more details about that meeting? who were these lawyers?

  6. Someone just told me this morning that the higher you get in life, the dumber you get. Looks like this post holds water.

  7. Ken loves to brag about how many times he RETIRED and how many pensions he has. Fr Ken, late, late vocation, stay retired ...enjoy. You are not helping.

  8. Wow! Doctor Ric and now Fr. Ken! Anyone else care to step into the arena with FACTS and not OPINIONS? Tim has the facts or will get them, so tread softly in the Jungle.

  9. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)September 23, 2016 at 2:50 PM

    Tim and I had a bit of a discussion on this topic a few weeks back in JungleWatch. I learned a lot from that. Perhaps Fr. Carriveau should have tuned in to JungleWatch at that time to learn, too, as I did. Yes, religious organizations and non-profits can lobby without being in violation of the Church's 501c tax exempt designation. Otherwise, who would advocate for the marginalized whenever budget slashing issues that affect them are being considered in the legislature? Also, part of the function of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is to engage in influencing public policy that will advocate for the poor and respect human life. The USCCB is very active in their lobby work in the US Congress. In Washington State, as I mentioned some weeks back that JungleWatch discussion on this tax exempt topic, the Catholic Church in Washington State has the WSCC, an organization created by the three dioceses in Washington State in order to foster a unified Catholic voice on issues of public policy. Our Catholic lobbyists work for the common good by advocating for human life, economic justice, education, social justice, and religious freedom based on the teachings of (1) the Gospel, (2) Catholic social teaching, and (3) the teachings of the Catholic Church. Its director is Sr. Sharon Park, a Dominican sister, who was our longtime Catholic lobbyist in the state legislature for many years. Now the Catholic Church’s lobbyist is Donna Christensen. Every year, the WSCC’s Board of Directors establishes its legislative priorities in light of the Catholic teachings. The priorities provide the basis for WSCC's public testimony and advocacy activities. WSCC engages (lobbys)) public officials in the public forum on a wide range of issues. As I mentioned, the US Catholic Conference of Bishops does the same thing but in the federal level. So, yes, the Church and other non-profit organizations may take part in the legislative process without violating the IRS rules on their 501c designation. I think the truth is that the Archdiocese/Chancery is in a flux right now that there wasn’t the foresight in the leadership to send a Church representative to be engaged in the public hearings held for Bill 326-33. I also think there was an underestimation by the Church leadership on the heightened popularity among the Faithful and even those outside of the Church to get this bill through the legislature. In the end, as we all saw last weekend, as Tim wrote above, members of the clergy were out in full force using the (bully) pulpit, donned in their full-on priest vestments, and fully engaged in political lobbying, not as private citizens, but as clergy, all the while violating the 501c designation they were previously careful not to violate (or so Fr. Carriveau says).

    1. Thank you!

      Your points would be even stronger with paragraphs.

    2. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)September 30, 2016 at 4:09 AM

      Hahahahahaha! Thank you, Anon 4:17. You're correct! Sometimes I get so ticked-off reading about some of the dumbness of folks written about in this blog that I just type away my comments without a stop!

  10. Is winding up children in order to get at their parents against IRS regulations? Turn the whole public into Kiko groupies, without them even realising it!