Church & Bingo?
A few years back casino player David Edwards put down his $8, got his Powerball tickets and looked upon the god almighty, gosh, what a payoff that turned out to be! With $73.7 million won, he couldn’t be filled with more thankfulness towards lottery, bingo and the wonderful world of gaming!
Believe it or not, to many Christians including Catholics, bingo is jeeringly regarded as their 8th sacrament. What’s important to take note of though is that the Catholic Church instructs that betting becomes ethically wrong as soon as it denies a gambler of wealth necessary for the deprived.
Hundreds of churches as well as synagogues in the New York city area witness the events of weekly bingo games, raffles and funded casino game events in their own community halls and civic centers. Although the theme behind these bingo nights is socialization and meeting new people, the underlying idea is still gambling.
People are so fanatic that they often take pictures of St. Cayetano to their rural community social halls and exercise rooms on bingo nights, hoping that this will bring them some semblance of good luck.
St. Cayetano, a supporter of bread, labor and the jobless was at one time a pastor in old Italy Naples who founded the Bank of Naples. People who desired a favor would bet him their rosary or a holy candle, but St. Cavetano always proved them wrong and won the bet.
Bingo is a reliable source of income for most city churches to erase the cost of most services. According to news sources, approximately $75K annually isn’t out of the ordinary for a number of big parishes. Where some parishes are making gains from Bingo, there are others who claim that it’s not that popular.
It was discovered from Dennis Keane, chairman of the archdiocese’s Inter-Parish Financing Commission that bingo is losing popularity and some parishes have slashed their bingo agenda almost competely.
It has also been noted that revenues from hosting bingo in the archdiocese have fallen to a mere 25% in the past five years — to $2.2 million from a once high of $3.2 million. The reason for the drop is mainly attributed to the lack of volunteers to run bingo games.