The Roman Catholic Church in the US received as much as $3.5 billion in federal coronavirus loans, according to an analysis of government data by The Associated Press (AP). On Monday, the US Small Business Administration made public the companies and bodies it had awarded loans under the $659 billion Paycheck Protection Program. 3,500 loans were granted to Catholic entities at various levels — including individual parishes and dioceses, as well as schools, the AP said. The total came to between $1.4 billion and $3.5 billion. Its analysis suggested the true figure could be higher still thanks to other loans which were not registered in the latest data. Trump protest Bible President Donald Trump holds a bible while visiting St. John’s Church near the White House on June 1. The church is Episcopalian. BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images) Catholic bodies that received loans under $150,000 were not included in Monday’s list, which could further increase the total. The scale of these loans was unclear, but the church’s Diocesan Fiscal Management Conference said on May 8 that 9,000 Catholic bodies had been awarded loans — more than twice the number accounted for by the AP. The DFMC, a group of the church’s financial administrators, said that 13,000 of the total 17,000 churches in the US applied for PPP loans. For example, Catholic Charities USA was awarded 110 loans worth as much as $220 million, the AP said. Bishop Lawrence Persico of Erie, Pennsylvania, told the AP: “I know some people may react with surprise that government funding helped support faith-based schools, parishes and dioceses.” https://www.businessinsider.com/us-catholic-church-3-billion-coronavirus-loans-not-business-ap-2020-7?utm_source=reddit.com

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