A Catholic Church In Washington Now Accepts Crypto Donations, Why It Matters
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, DC, has announced intentions to expand its ministry and support 139 parishes and regional initiatives for the needy by accepting crypto donations.
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington Partners With Engiven
The donations will be accepted through Engiven, an enterprise donation platform that uses the blockchain to assist non-profits access cryptocurrency donations to further their cause. The platform has already enabled crypto donations for over 400 faith-based groups, including a $10 million Bitcoin donation, one of the largest single BTC donations in history.
The Executive director of Development in the Archdiocese of Washington, Joseph Gillmer, stated that their aim in accepting crypto is to boost their ability to communicate with parishioners while making it easier for them to fulfill the church’s mission.
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Engiven’s cryptocurrency donation platform will play a key role. The portal will allow people to donate crypto assets to over 300 parishes, schools, and ministries in the broader Washington, D.C., area. The digital nature of the platform also means donors can send money anonymously using various cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, from across the globe.
While the move is part of a trend of non-governmental organizations accepting the applicability of blockchain, especially in payment using cryptocurrencies, the Vatican has not yet issued clear guidance on the matter, nor have they officially acknowledged using cryptocurrencies.
The Catholic Crypto Conference
In Nov. 2022, the first-ever Catholic Crypto Conference was held in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. It brought together over 250 congregants, including theologians, philosophers, cryptocurrency enthusiasts, and professionals from the financial services industry, to discuss and enhance the relationship between Catholicism and cryptocurrencies.
The conference focused on the opportunities and risks of crypto and how the Catholic Church should view blockchain technology and its use case outside of the financial world, such as storing parish documentation.
Blockchain is an immutable and distributed database that can store and track various transactions, including documents, coins, or artifacts with precision to their origins, potentially making storage safer. Safe storage can also help prevent corruption by keeping exact records of when and who accessed parish funds or documents.
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In 2019, Pope Francis said that a “better world is possible due to technology if it is accompanied by ethics and inspired by a vision of the common good.” The key is all technology can be good if used to promote the common good.
While the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington appears to be leaning on technology and leveraging cryptocurrencies, the United States has been aggressively cracking down on crypto companies.
Recently, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a Wells Notice to Paxos, the issuer of the BUSD, a stablecoin, claiming that the token was an unregistered security.
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