By Pat McGrath and Alison McClymont
The Catholic Church has asked some priests receiving JobKeeper to donate almost half of the payment back to the organisation.
ABC Investigations has obtained letters sent to priests about the taxpayer-funded payment which ask them to hand back some of the money to help make up for a plunge in donations from parishioners.
The letters, sent to clergy in the Diocese of Parramatta in Western Sydney, say an “amount between $500 and $700 per fortnight is recommended” to “assist with future payments and the balance sheet”.
“The closure of churches and the stopping of public masses has had a drastic effect on not only our parish communities, but also the pastoral revenue collection,” another letter reads.
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