It helped keep me in employment, so I have a natural bias about the program. In doing the math, it looks to me that if you take $3T in stimulus money and divide it up amongst every US citizen evenly, my household would net close to $30k. And that would keep us in rent, utilities, and groceries for about a year. I suppose businesses bigger than small wanted the gush-in phenomenon (as opposed to a trickle-down effect). Frankly, even if I were a raging anti-religion person, I’d still be complaining a lot more about corporations. Divide up Church “loot” from this program evenly among 20,000-some parishes and chanceries, and I’m not sure $70,000 for payroll would be quite as effective as shipping the moolah to the people directly. And then we have banks, though they are doing a heap of work to make this work.
Despite the fact that most resentment to “the Church” is to the institution, I think it’s optimal to keep a low profile on this. If people are complaining about synagogues and mosques and Protestant churches, let’s weigh in to defend there.
Frankly, I don’t see the fuss on this, tax-exempt or not. If there’s anybody out there who disagrees, I challenge you to comment. Otherwise, lay off in other media while you’re at it. Or chase after bigger fish.