Guide to Financial Giving

The Midwest Buddhist Temple is fortunate to have members and friends who volunteer their time and energy to support our activities. While this physical support is critical, equally important is to ask our members for their generous financial support for our Operating Budget. This budget provides the ministerial salary, programs, utilities and temple maintenance, operational expenses, and dues to national and district Buddhist Churches of America (BCA) organizations.

Throughout MBT’s 75 years of existence, we have been fortunate to enjoy the generous support of countless individuals and organizations. Unlike some temples, MBT does not publish donated amounts because all donations, regardless of size, are gratefully and equally accepted.

Thanks to the planning and sacrifice of our issei and nisei (first and second-generation Japanese-American) members, the temple has been on sound financial footing. It is now up to each of us to continue this tradition of selfless giving.

To make a donation to the Midwest Buddhist Temple, either securely online or by check, please visit our Donate Now page.

Here’s a guide to some of the more common forms of financial giving at MBT.


The Pledge provides about 40 percent of the temple’s required income. Unlike some temples that assess dues, the Midwest Buddhist Temple long has relied on our members to determine their own level of donation. A suggested guideline is $450 per person based on our annual expenditures and the current size of the Sangha, but this is merely a suggestion as Pledges of any amount are gratefully accepted.

The first $143 of your pledge goes to the BCA, with the remainder to MBT. Please visit our Membership Pledge page for more information

Monthly Memorials

On the first Sunday of each month, the temple conducts a memorial service for those who have passed away during that month, regardless of year. Invitations are mailed to families on record and many respond with a donation in memory of their loved one. Donations range from $50 to $100.

If you wish to have a family member added to our records, please contact the office at or call 312.943.7801.

Buddhist Holidays

There are six major religious holidays when the temple sends out Donation envelopes. These include: Ho-onko, Hanamatsuri, Gotan-e, Obon, Ohigan and Bodhi Day (you can learn more about these holidays by visiting the Buddhist Holidays page).

Members and friends are encouraged to make a donation on these holidays whether they are able to attend the service or not, as a way for celebrating these important Buddhist holidays. Donations range from $50 to $100.

Special Donations

These are specific-use funds with donations from $50 to $100.

  • MBT Legacy Garden (maintenance)
  • Nokotsudo (maintaining the columbarium)
  • Eitaikyo (maintaining the altar)
  • Flower (for fresh flowers for the altar)
  • Dharma School (supports educational programs)
  • Bulletin (supports the temple’s monthly newsletter)
  • Kono Fund (supports Buddhist education, primarily for ministerial students)

Planned Giving

Planned Giving is a method of supporting non-profits like the Midwest Buddhist Temple through a donor’s estate. Please visit our Planned Giving page for more information about this method of donating to the Midwest Buddhist Temple.

Updated January 2020