by Aidan Kang, CFA
Senior Writer
UPDATED: October 13, 2022

The economic impact of the recent pandemic and global job crisis hit you hard, and now you’re struggling to make ends meet. You might have considered reaching out to church charities that help families in need before.

Although dozens of charity programs cater to low-income households, you still have doubts about applying since you don’t know if you’ll even qualify. Nobody wants to waste time on institutions that’d reject them.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, don’t worry. Our team empathizes with families struggling financially during these trying times, and we understand the anguish of not having enough money to support your family.

But don’t lose hope yet! We researched the most reputable church charities in the U.S. and compiled the goals, requirements, and support limitations of their assistance programs. That way, your family will have someone to approach in times of need regardless of your religious beliefs.

This piece gives you in-depth insights into the best church charities and their application procedures, so stick with us until the end. Otherwise, you might waste time applying for programs that aren’t suited to your situation.

Let’s look into some church charities that help with bill payments!

Love In the Name of Christ (Love Inc.)

Love Inc. is a faith-based ministry that supports communities nationwide by mobilizing its local churches. It has affiliates in the U.S. and Kenya.

Available Assistance Programs

Most people recognize Love Inc. for its emergency response programs. However, applicants can also reach out to them for financial support or assistance procuring basic necessities, such as:

  • Community Action and Emergency Response
  • Daily Household Meals
  • Essential Furniture
  • Minor Home Repairs and Modifications
  • Rent and Mortgage Payments
  • Starting Afresh Post-rehab
  • Utility Bills

Locations Served

Love Inc. has 122+ authorized affiliates in the U.S. With the permission of the Love Inc. headquarters, these affiliates assist a total of 5,500+ Christian churches in 29 different states.

Program Qualifications and Requirements

Love Inc. typically caters to low-income households living below the poverty threshold. Also, it only provides rent and mortgage payments assistance to post-pandemic delays.

How to Apply

  1. Contact your local Love Inc. affiliate and share your situation.
  2. A call center volunteer will explain the available programs and send their affiliate’s unique intake form, which should look like this one from Nacogdoches County, Texas.
  3. Submit the completed form, attach your IDs, and wait 7 to 10 days for the team to process your paperwork.
  4. If you qualify, your local affiliate will present a unique plan for your household.

The Episcopal Church

The Episcopal Church is a mainline Protestant denomination with nine provinces. 

As a member of the worldwide Angelican communion, it also follows the teachings of Jesus Christ. However, Episcopalians don’t acknowledge the Pope. 

Available Assistance Programs

The Episcopal Church provides adequate financial resources so that you can pay for the following essentials:

  • Clothing
  • Crucial Post-disaster Home Repairs
  • Daily Meals
  • High School and College Tuition Fees
  • Prescription Medication
  • Rent or Mortgage Amortization
  • Toiletries and Personal Hygiene Items

Pro Tip: You might find Episcopalian assistance programs helpful if you need churches that help with car repairs. 

However, you won’t get the repairs done for free. The Episcopal church assumes that applicants with private vehicles don’t live below the poverty threshold, so it expects them to pay the amount back.

Don’t worry because you’ll get super-low rates that no bank or lender can match.

Locations Served

The Episcopalian Church ranks among the most popular forms of Protestantism. It currently has 6,440+ churches, all of which provide local financial assistance programs through their volunteer social workers.

Program Qualifications and Requirements

The Episcopal Church typically provides urgent assistance to local communities regardless of religious beliefs. However, personal finance aid is reserved for Episcopalians serving in the ministry.

How to Apply

  1. Find an Episcopalian Church near you and visit their website.
  2. Navigate to the Grants, Loans, and Scholarship section, which should look like this page from The Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio. Look into the programs that might suit your needs.
  3. Next, contact the church and inquire about the financial assistance program you wish to apply for. 
  4. You’ll likely need to complete an application form and submit paperwork proving your identity, residence, and income.
  5. Wait for one to two weeks while the church processes your application.

Jewish Federation of North America (JFNA)

The Jewish Federation of North America (JFNA) provides social service assistance, humanitarian relief programs, and daily household expenses support to thousands of Jewish households in North America. They strive to create flourishing, thriving Jewish communities.

Available Assistance Programs

The JFNA focuses on improving the overall financial health of Jewish families that need assistance with:

  • Rent and Mortgage Payments
  • Prescription Medications and Health Bills
  • Certain Legal Liabilities
  • Daily Meals
  • Emergency Grants for Childcare
  • Health and Life Insurance
  • Utility Bills
  • Senior Care

Locations Served

The JFNA has 146+ independent federations. They support a total of 300+ smaller Jewish communities across North America. However, the organization also reaches out to various members of the Israel civil society outside its service areas.

Program Qualifications and Requirements

The Jewish Federations of North America typically cater to low-income Jewish households. However, most independent federations provide emergency assistance to their local communities in times of crisis regardless of religion.

How to Apply

  1. Find your local JFNA independent federation and look for their website.
  2. Next, head over to the Financial Assistance section, which should look like this page from the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles.
  3. Scroll through the available programs and hit one that addresses your needs.
  4. Browse the details, then send your request to the attached email.
  5. Most federations will only ask you to send your government-issued IDs and income paperwork, but some might need you to fill out specific application forms.
  6. Wait for the team to process your application.

Lutheran Social Services (LSS)

The Lutheran Social Services (LSS) stands as one of the most prominent nonprofit social service organizations in the U.S. It provides financial assistance to millions of low-income households per annum.

The LSS operates under the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), a mainline Protestant denomination that believes humans can achieve salvation solely through the grace of Jesus Christ. Meanwhile, the Catholic Church also follows the teachings of the Pope.

Available Assistance Programs

The LSS typically doesn’t provide financial assistance. However, it helps community members with housing, living space repairs, and senior care, although some locations also provide support with immigration fees and medical bills.

Locations Served

Lutheran Social Services (LSS) has 300+ independent health and human service organizations across the U.S. However, it also extends its support to several communities in the Caribbean. 

Program Qualifications and Requirements

Most congregations running the LSS program focus on destitute members of the Lutheran Church, although they provide financial assistance to qualifying low-income households regardless of religion. ECLA also mobilizes emergency response teams to disaster-stricken areas.

How to Apply

  1. Visit the Lutheran Social Services website. You’ll see a list of available programs on the Get Help page.
  2. Click on the program that fits your needs and follow the instructions. You’ll likely need to contact your local office.
  3. Next, they’ll ask you to complete a unique intake form and submit it along with your government-issued ID, income documents, and proof of residence.
  4. You should receive a confirmation after one to two weeks.

United Methodist Church

The United Methodist Church is a mainline Protestant denomination and the main predecessor of the Methodist Episcopal Church. It also serves a major role in Methodism.

Similar to the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church believes in the existence of the Holy Trinity, and it acknowledges the Bible. However, the members of the community don’t follow the Pope.

Available Assistance Programs

The United Methodist Church provides financial assistance to community members who need help paying for:

  • Car repairs
  • High school and college tuition fees
  • Prescription medication
  • Rent and mortgage
  • Transportation (i.e., gas vouchers, donated used cars, bus fare)
  • Urgent home repairs and modification
  • Utility bills

Locations Served

The United Methodist Church has 32,000+ congregations in the U.S. All of these churches provide financial assistance to their constituents, although they’re likely working with a limited budget.

However, most congregations host food drives regularly. If you no longer have enough money to pay for your family’s daily meals, you can turn to them in the meantime.

Program Qualifications and Requirements

The United Methodist Church focuses on unemployed adults, students, widows, and other individuals from low-income households.

You can ask for financial assistance regardless of religion. However, you’ll have a better shot at qualifying if you belong to its church community.

How to Apply

  1. Find a nearby United Methodist Church and contact its volunteer workers.
  2. Share your story with the team so that they can present you with one of the organization’s ongoing assistance programs.
  3. Next, you’ll receive an intake form. Submit it with your government-issued ID, income paperwork, and any documents regarding your specific situation.

Getting Through Trying Times With the Help of Your Local Church

These are just some of the religious institutions that provide financial assistance. Although they follow varying requirements, most programs cater to low-income households living near or below the poverty threshold. You’ll find a program that suits your needs.

Also, don’t lose hope if you fail the first few applications. Note that these churches receive thousands of appeals every day, so it might take time before they get to your application.

To increase your chances of approval, consult the local church that your family frequents. Churches that help pay rent and bills prioritize low-income households active in their local religious communities.