Christ commands us to love one another. Since the church follows his commands, the church wants to express that love, usually by blessing someone with a love gift. Frequently, the church will receive a love offering for someone in need or in appreciation of a member. The Internal Revenue Service does not mind love gifts as long as the church follows the tax rules. This article details those rules.
In all instances, the church must approve the love gift and take control of the contributions. For example, if Ms. Myway wants to bless Pastor Loving by giving him a love gift through the church, then the church should not accept that gift. Ms. Myway is controlling how the money is spent. On the other hand, if the church decides to bless Pastor Loving with a love gift, it may accept the donation from Ms. Myway. If the church controls how the money is spent, then the donation qualifies for charitable contribution credit. On the other hand, if Ms. Myway is using the church as a conduit to give a personal gift to Pastor Loving, then she does not have a tax-deductible contribution and the church has risked its tax-exempt status.