A church would like to send funds to a foreign church. This foreign church is not an Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3) organization; it is simply a small ministry in need of help. Is there a problem if the church donates to this foreign church?
According to IRS Publication 526, deductible contributions may only be made to “qualified organizations.” The only foreign charities that are cited in the publication as permissible are charities in Canada, Mexico, and Israel. Often, U.S. missionaries in foreign countries will use some of their support to aid local ministries that they are associated with. These type of transfers from a US church through a U.S. missionary are not a problem.