Recently the silver bartering currency has again been on my mind. Specifically, the production of a “tithing” coin, meaning a silver coin that latter-day saints could use to pay their tithing, instead of using U.S. currency.
Since the production of the first silver bartering currency coin (the 1/2 oz piece) in 2008, until now, I have taken an “if you build it they will come” approach. I designed and ordered the creation of the first coin and then I essentially sat back to see what would happen. Not much did happen. Some people bought coins as part of their silver collection. One guy promoted the currency by making a secular web site and developing a valuation model for it, but other than getting a few businesses to say they would receive it as payment, no coins circulated. Also no one, other than myself, was paying tithing using the 1/2-oz coin. And that was that.
The vision that I had in my head, remained there, mostly unfulfilled. (Now, that’s okay, since I like to operate by faith, so this stagnation hasn’t and doesn’t phase me one bit.)
Back in 2012, after pondering the currency and that promoter’s model, I got an idea about producing a very small tithing coin that I saw could jump start the currency and launch it into the stratosphere, allowing me to make all the dies and distribute and circulate the coins potentially around the entire world. On October 2, 2012, I wrote a comment about it:
I have been tempted, of late, to create a 1/100th ounce silver coin, based on the above design, specifically for people to pay tithing, but I do not know that there would be enough interest in it to sustain the investment in the dies. A 1/100th ounce silver coin would cost around $400 for 100 coins. That is likely within the tithing budget of many LDS couples. (Because silver has gone up in price so much, the 1/2-oz coin is too expensive to purchase 100 coins. You’d need around $2000 for 100 coins.)
The 1/100th oz coin would be specifically for tithing for two reasons: #1, because it will be within the tithing budget of many people and, #2, because it would deal a financial blow to the corporate Church. This is because although you would pay around $4 per coin, the silver content in the coin would only be worth 30+ cents. So, although you would have fulfilled the law of tithing, thus keeping your good standing before the Lord, you would have simultaneously reduced the tithing revenue of the corporate church. How’s this for a campaign?:
Reduce the tithing revenue of the corporate Church by paying your tithing in silver!
(Using the 1/2-oz coin or any other silver coin won’t reduce the tithing revenue much, since the price of the coin so closely matches the value of the silver content.)
If anyone is interested in paying their tithing with such a 1/100th ounce coin, let me know via Wireclub and I will consider making the dies. If enough people decide to make the switch to silver for tithing payment, I will have to create the dies.
One last thing: for those who are currently paying tithing in silver or gold, assuming there is anyone out there doing that, I recommend that you only pay tithing in silver, not fast offerings. Pay your fast offerings in U.S. currency, since that goes to the poor in your ward, and they need all the value they can get.
It has been about a year and a half since I had that “temptation.” No one ended up contacting me about it on Wireclub and I let it drop, although it stayed in the back of my mind ever since. If it was bona fide inspiration, given of the Spirit, and not just my own idea, there would come a time that it would be used, so I didn’t worry myself about it.
Recently I got that “tithing coin” feeling again, and never one to wait on impressions, I immediately contacted the mint to get the details concerning making a 1/100-oz coin. That’s when I found out that it can’t be done. That is, not for a 1/100th of an ounce coin. But it can be done for a 1/20th-oz coin. (Now, don’t get me wrong. I still have a plan in place to produce a 1/100-oz piece. But that will have to wait. The expedient coin is the 1/20 ounce.)
The mint has told me that the mold to the original dies for the 1/2-oz coin, which was made in the last quarter of 2008, is still good, and can still be used to make all the other sizes, so that everything matches up perfectly. It also turns out that there may be some potential distributors who would be willing to invest in purchasing the coins in bulk (100 or more pieces), so that they can sell them to the public individually.
I’ve run the numbers and it looks like if you buy 100 or more pieces, it’ll cost (in total) about $4.25 a coin. So, a distributor would invest around $425. If the distributor turns around and sells them for $5.25 a piece (which is what I recommend), he or she gets a small profit and people get themselves a tithing coin, which potentially could fund the creation of all the dies of the entire currency, in both gold and silver and in both coin conditions and in all languages.
The reason why it could fund everything is that tithing is ten percent and Mormons typically pay it every time they get a paycheck. That is a very steady source of income which, to a potential distributor, reduces the risk of investing in the tithing coin considerably. After selling 425 coins, they would have covered their initial investment money completely, so that there would be no more risk involved, whatsoever.
In the case of a tithe-payer, let’s say he had a minimum wage job and his income was $320 a week, or $640 every two weeks, contributing $64 to tithing every paycheck. If he sent that money to the distributor, instead of directly to his bishop, he could purchase 12 of these 1/20-oz coins (at $5.25 a piece) and then he could give those coins to the church as tithing. As this is tithing, this routine would be repeated every paycheck for as long as he is employed. Multiply that by ten people, all earning minimum wage, and the distributor would sell his entire supply of coins every time within a two-week period. If the tithe-payer is not a minimum wage earner, but makes a lot more money, then the stash gets bought up that much more quickly, allowing die creation to proceed at a much faster rate.
Working after this fashion takes away the need for anyone (other than the distributor) to fork over enough money to purchase 100 coins. Any tithe-payer would be able to convert money into silver for as little as $5 and some change. If enough people started doing this, the church would begin to be starved* and the prophecies** concerning contributing to the church in silver would start to be fulfilled. Also, the bartering currency*** would take off in a big way.
* Although it is true that the wheat and tares must grow together until they are ripe, at some point there will be a real division and the tares will become angry with the wheat. For all I know, one of the reasons for this anger will be because the wheat will engage in a monetary practice that does not contribute greatly to the church coffers, such as paying tithing in silver.
** For example:
And all moneys that you receive in your stewardships, by improving upon the properties which I have appointed unto you, in houses, or in lands, or in cattle, or in all things save it be the holy and sacred writings, which I have reserved unto myself for holy and sacred purposes, shall be cast into the treasury as fast as you receive moneys, by hundreds, or by fifties, or by twenties, or by tens, or by fives.
Or in other words, if any man among you obtain five dollars let him cast them into the treasury; or if he obtain ten, or twenty, or fifty, or an hundred, let him do likewise; and let not any among you say that it is his own; for it shall not be called his, nor any part of it. (D&C 104:68-70)
The revelations of Joseph Smith equate “moneys” to “dollars.” A “dollar” at the time of these revelations was defined as a certain amount of silver.
*** There are also prophecies concerning the great and abominable church of the Gentiles, and the widespread use (and accumulation) of gold and silver:
And it came to pass that I saw among the nations of the Gentiles the formation of a great church…And it came to pass that I beheld this great and abominable church; and I saw the devil that he was the founder of it. And I also saw gold, and silver, and silks, and scarlets, and fine-twined linen, and all manner of precious clothing; and I saw many harlots. And the angel spake unto me, saying: Behold the gold, and the silver, and the silks, and the scarlets, and the fine-twined linen, and the precious clothing, and the harlots, are the desires of this great and abominable church. (1 Ne. 13:4,6-8)
For all I know, it may be that this prophecy will be fulfilled only when gold and silver are once again used as the medium of exchange. If so, the bartering currency may the catalyst for its eventual fulfillment.
Recent blog trends
There have been, for quite some time now, on very many blogs, many negative posts concerning the Church’s use of tithing funds, such as its for-profit investments. I am concerned about these posts, not that they are not giving accurate information, but that people as a result of this information have been choosing to stop paying tithing and thus are violating their covenants.
My hope is that people will continue to pay their tithing, to the church as they are supposed to, but if they are concerned about all these church expenditures, then starve the Church of money while still contributing silver, as I explained in the quote above. It may be that this reasoning will not be good enough for many latter-day saints who are upset at these things, but perhaps some will accept it.
“Upon my house shall it begin”
We all are familiar with the prophecy concerning the order of God’s judgments, (or at least we should be), namely that they are going to start with God’s people:
Behold, vengeance cometh speedily upon the inhabitants of the earth, a day of wrath, a day of burning, a day of desolation, of weeping, of mourning, and of lamentation; and as a whirlwind it shall come upon all the face of the earth, saith the Lord. And upon my house shall it begin, and from my house shall it go forth, saith the Lord; first among those among you, saith the Lord, who have professed to know my name and have not known me, and have blasphemed against me in the midst of my house, saith the Lord. (D&C 112:24-26)
This is spoken concerning the judgments of God, but the same principle may also hold true concerning God’s blessings, that they will first be poured out upon the Lord’s people and then go forth to others. What we latter-day saints do, or do not do, may end up having a world-wide effect, the world mirroring our actions, according to this principle. Thus, if we start using silver to contribute church offerings or as currency, the world may indeed follow suit.
Checking to see if the time is right
Anyway, the purpose of this post is to find out if anyone wants this church monetary starvation and prophecy fulfillment to happen and so wants to pay their tithing in these silver coins. If so, please leave a comment and I’ll contact you by email. If one says, “I can buy 10 coins every two weeks” and another says, “I can buy 15 coins on the 1st and the 15th of every month” and so on and so forth and it becomes obvious that a distributor could easily recoup his investment, it should be quite easy to find someone to become a distributor. In fact, if you yourself want to be a distributor, then leave a note about that and I’ll email you, too.
(Please keep in mind that the dies are not yet made for the 1/20th ounce coin. This is just a preliminary “blood pressure” check, to see if the time is right for the introduction of a “tithing” coin…)
Following the example of the corporate Church
Denver Snuffer once wrote the following:
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a three-year system for collecting and spending tithes.
In the first year the funds are collected.
In the second year the funds remain invested while a budget is prepared for spending the tithing.
In the third year the funds are spent.
During the time when the funds are collected (first year), they are put to use in investments or deposits which yield a return. Similarly, while they remain invested during the second year, they also yield a return. When the third year arrives, and the funds are being spent on budgeted expenses, until the day they are spent they continue to collect interest or a return.
The amount of tithing collected in the first year is the amount designated “tithing” contributions. This is the amount that is budgeted and spent in the third year. All of the return on tithing yielded in the form of interest or return on investments is treated as “investment income” not tithing.
When the church spends “tithing” on temples, chapels, publications, etc. those monies are confined to the original amount collected as “tithing” only.
When the church spends “investment money” those include the interest, return, etc. collected on the tithing money during the three year cycle from when originally collected until the time it is spent. It also includes the returns on the returns as they accumulate over the years.
Therefore, when the church announces that a project (like the large reconstruction of downtown Salt Lake City) is not “tithing” but is “investment income” of the church, this is the distinction which is being made.
Now, taking this as a pattern, a network of tithing coin distributors can be easily set up. From January to December, those who wish to distribute the coins to others would set aside their monthly or bi-weekly tithes until they have enough to purchase 100 coins (about $425.) After they purchase 100 coins, (which is now their tithing), they would list themselves as a distributor, and invest the tithing coins by selling them to others at a $1 profit. The profit ($1) from these coins is treated as “investment income,” not “tithing,” and is re-invested by buying more coins to distribute. After 425 coins have been moved in this way, only “investment income” (and not “tithing”) could be used to purchase 100 coins to distribute. The initial accumulated tithing (of 100 coins) and any other tithing converted into these silver coins afterward, would be considered the tithing to be payed by the distributor to the church at the end of the year (December), or whenever the distributor wanted to pay it during the year. Also, at the end of the year, the stash of investment returns, in the form of silver coins, could also be tithed, meaning one-tenth of them could be given to the church.
Using this strategy protects the tithing a distributor has set aside at all times, because even if only part of the stash of 100 coins (or however many coins you’ve set aside as your tithing) are sold, and you don’t have enough money to buy another set of 100 coins, you can still pay your tithing, part of which will be in silver coins, and part of which will be in U.S. currency.
That’s all for now. Let the comments roll.
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