Here’s how much money everyone who works in America’s houses of worship make every year

Men pray in the Eyup Cultural Center mosque which has a large number of Uzbek and Turkish worshippers from the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn on November 3, 2017, in New York City.

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Men pray in the Eyup Cultural Center mosque which has a large number of Uzbek and Turkish worshippers from the Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn on November 3, 2017, in New York City.
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Spencer Platt/Getty Images

  • Religious organizations in the US employ a wide variety of workers.
  • Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we found what the typical worker in a variety of occupations employed by religious organizations earns.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

While ministers and clergy are the figureheads of America’s many houses of worship, there’s a whole team of workers who keep churches, synagogues, mosques, and temples running from day to day.

Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Employment Statistics program, we found out what those workers all earn.

According to that report, houses of worship employed a total of 196,460 Americans in May 2018, the most recent period for which data is available. Median annual pay across all workers in the industry was $35,850, somewhat below the median in all industries of $38,640.

Here’s the median annual pay for each occupation tracked by the BLS with at least 1,000 employees in the religious organizations industry, ranked from lowest- to highest-paying, along with how many employees there are in religious organizations:


30. Childcare workers make an annual salary of $23,660.

Total employed in the US: 7,470

What they do, according to O*NET: Childcare workers take care of young children, usually dressing, feeding, or playing with them. In addition to monitoring their play, childcare workers talk to parents or guardians about their children.


29. Teacher assistants make an annual salary of $24,790.

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Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 4,320

What they do, according to O*NET: Teacher assistants help teachers in classrooms with teaching and monitoring children, sometimes as part of a career path to becoming teachers themselves.


28. Receptionists and information clerks make an annual salary of $26,430.

Total employed in the US: 3,300

What they do, according to O*NET: Receptionists and information clerks greet people and answer questions either on the phone or in person. They also might schedule meetings and appointments, file records, and manage complaints.


27. Janitors and cleaners make an annual salary of $26,580.

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ER Productions Limited/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 11,140

What they do, according to O*NET: Janitors and cleaners keep buildings clean and orderly using equipment ranging from brooms and mops to carpet cleaners and floor waxers.


26. Maids and housekeeping cleaners make an annual salary of $27,090.

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shironosov/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 2,790

What they do, according to O*NET: Maids and housekeeping cleaners keep neat and orderly rooms, whether they’re cleaning bedrooms, offices, bathrooms, or hallways.


25. Landscaping and groundskeeping workers make an annual salary of $27,930.

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Jens Büttner/picture alliance via Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,470

What they do, according to O*NET: Landscaping and groundskeeping workers take care of lawns, plants, and trees. Their duties include sod laying, mowing, trimming, planting, and watering, along with keeping the area free of general trash and debris.


24. Recreation workers make an annual salary of $28,130.

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Flickr / Camp Pinewood

Total employed in the US: 1,680

What they do, according to O*NET: Recreation workers organize and promote activities, which can range from arts and crafts to sporting events, sometimes to fundraise for a community organization.


23. All other religious workers make an annual salary of $28,750.

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Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 6,470

What they do, according to O*NET: This position is made up of all the other religious workers who aren’t in any main categories.


22. Institution and cafeteria cooks make an annual salary of $29,080.

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zoranm/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,410

What they do, according to O*NET: Institution and cafeteria cooks prepare large quantities of buffet-style food, both for employees and guests.


21. Office clerks make an annual salary of $30,550.

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Dotshock/Shutterstock

Total employed in the US: 8,450

What they do, according to O*NET: Office clerks perform any number of office-related tasks, including answering phones, sending emails, filing records, filling out paperwork, and communicating with customers.


20. Secretaries and administrative assistants make an annual salary of $32,580.

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sturti/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 15,230

What they do, according to O*NET: Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants organize conference calls, schedule meetings, and take care care of other clerical functions and administrative support.


19. Preschool teachers make an annual salary of $33,610.

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Wonderschool

Total employed in the US: 9,200

What they do, according to O*NET: Preschool teachers instruct preschool-aged children. They also make sure children are socializing, behaving, and playing with each other.


18. Maintenance and repair workers make an annual salary of $34,070.

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Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 6,730

What they do, according to O*NET: Maintenance and repair workers make sure mechanical equipment is running smoothly. This includes pipe fitting, boiler repairs, welding, carpentry, and other general building repairs.


17. Social and human service assistants make an annual salary of $35,160.

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Steve Debenport/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,060

What they do, according to O*NET: Social and human service assistants provide support for families or conduct programs relating to substance abuse, relationship therapy, and rehabilitation.


16. Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks make an annual salary of $38,020.

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Jozef_Culak/Shutterstock

Total employed in the US: 5,970

What they do, according to O*NET: Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks keep track of financial data and maintain financial records. They also work with state and federal policies and ensure business transactions are accounted for.


15. Religious activities and education directors make an annual salary of $38,550.

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An Easter Sunday baptism in York, England.
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Bethany Clarke

Total employed in the US: 17,330

What they do, according to O*NET: Religious activities and education directors oversee any community events, sometimes relating to volunteer work. They also spread the word for events through newsletters or announcements.


14. Audio and video-equipment technicians make an annual salary of $39,360.

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Evgeniy Shkolenko/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,070

What they do, according to O*NET: Audio and video equipment technicians set up microphones, speakers, projectors, and other equipment for use in events like concerts or presentations.


13. Music directors and composers make an annual salary of $39,680.

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Hill Street Studios/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 4,370

What they do, according to O*NET: Music directors and composers conduct, arrange, and rehearse with musical acts.


12. Self-enrichment education teachers make an annual salary of $41,560.

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Wong Campion/Reuters

Total employed in the US: 5,220

What they do, according to O*NET: Self-enrichment education teachers usually teach non-traditional classes, like ballet, ceramics, or swimming, sometimes after school hours.


11. Clergy make an annual salary of $43,880.

Total employed in the US: 23,390

What they do, according to O*NET: Clergy perform a wide variety of tasks relating to worship, including conducting services, prayers, and providing spiritual guidance to worshippers, regardless of faith.


10. All other business operations specialists make an annual salary of $44,040.

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SolStock/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,240

What they do, according to O*NET: This job title encompasses many positions, including security management specialists, business continuity planners, sustainability specialists, and online merchants.


9. Elementary-school teachers make an annual salary of $45,080.

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Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 2,510

What they do, according to O*NET: Elementary school teachers teach children from Kindergarten to fifth grade.


8. Musicians and singers make an annual salary of $49,296.*

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Bernard Annebicque/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 9,610

What they do, according to O*NET: Musicians and singers typically perform songs during various community events or during religious services.

*BLS doesn’t include annual figures for this occupation; this annual median was estimated by Business Insider using the hourly median wage provided by BLS.


7. Secondary-school teachers make an annual salary of $50,650.

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Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,790

What they do, according to O*NET: Secondary-school teachers teach children in middle and high school.


6. Fundraisers make an annual salary of $50,940.

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Steve Debenport/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,100

What they do, according to O*NET: Fundraisers organize events or other ways of gathering money to fund religious organizations.


5. Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants make an annual salary of $52,290.

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millann/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 2,180

What they do, according to O*NET: Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants organize conference calls, schedule meetings, and take care care of other clerical functions and administrative support.


4. First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers make an annual salary of $53,350.

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Women at call center.
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GettyImages/ Hero Images

Total employed in the US: 2,300

What they do, according to O*NET: First-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers supervise customer support workers, usually in call centers.


3. Public relations specialists make an annual salary of $54,020.

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Mike Windle/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,090

What they do, according to O*NET: Public relations specialists promote people, companies, or institutions, and organize media events relating to their clients.


2. Accountants and auditors make an annual salary of $64,270.

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filadendron/Getty Images

Total employed in the US: 1,650

What they do, according to O*NET: Accountants and auditors analyze financial records for any errors, usually prepared by other bookkeepers.


1. General and operations managers make an annual salary of $87,240.

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Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Total employed in the US: 2,710

What they do, according to O*NET: General and operations managers oversee other workers in a variety of tasks, whether they’re administrative tasks or manual labor.