There is a clear correlation and scientific evidence between happiness and charitable donations. That’s according to one expert at a recent conference on philanthropy organized by the Acton Institute and the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See.
Dr. Arthur Brooks
American Enterprise Institute
People who give money to charity are 43 percent more likely than people who don’t give to say they’re very happy people. What you find in experiments, in laboratory experiments using human subjects is that when people are exposed to charitable acts, they get happier as a cause of their personal charity.
One of the biggest American donors on the panel said that even during these difficult economic times, private sector businesses need to keep up their charitable donations. But the power and ability of individuals and private groups to organize and donate money should never be underestimated. In 2006, individuals and private organizations in the United States donated more than $34.8 billion for poverty relief and foreign development, compared to just $23.5 billion given by the American government.
Representatives of the Catholic Church, the U.S. government, and the private sector discussed the conditions which have sparked a growth in philanthropy and private giving, and how they each view charitable donations.
Rev. Robert A. Sirico
Of course the Church, founded by Jesus Christ relies fundamentally on charity, much more so than on government authority, fiat or money.
Participants at the conference also noted that although there may occasionally be issues with local laws regarding separation of church and state, there are many successful precedents for church, state, and private entities working together for charitable causes. These include fighting AIDS in Africa, and rebuilding in the aftermath of the tsunami in Southeast Asia and Hurricane Katrina in the United States.
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