Kyabje Lama Zopa Rinpoche gave this advice to a student in May 2016 about supporting Dharma Centers (quote courtesy of LYWA):
…[supporting] the center can be of great help or small help, but it all depends on the person. Helping the center also becomes an offering to Buddha, Dharma, Sangha, and by offering to the Buddha—wow, wow, wow, wow, wow…Offering to the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha is unbelievable. So you should think like this when you give the money. You should think this is offering to Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. Think that it is helping the Sangha, who, of course, do the Vinaya practice of confession practice here—all the Sangha gather here and also there are teachings at the center. So you should think that helping the center is also helping His Holiness the Dalai Lama and helping Lama Yeshe and myself, the small Mickey Mouse’s wishes to be fulfilled.
Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Photo by Roger Kunsang, 2010.
Before I mentioned the benefits of offering to Buddha, Dharma, Sangha, but this is also an offering to the guru. From this you collect the highest amount of merit, the most merit, more than offering to numberless Buddha, Dharma, Sangha and to numberless statues, stupas and scriptures in the ten directions. All that merit becomes small compared with the merit of offering to the guru. No matter how many extensive offerings you make—even filling the whole sky—all that becomes very small compared to offering to the guru.
Additionally, this is the most powerful purification, it purifies defilements and negative karma collected from beginningless rebirths. It is the most powerful purification. You should know this. It is the quickest way to achieve realizations, the quickest way to be free from the oceans of samsaric sufferings, and the quickest way to achieve buddhahood, the total cessation of all the obscurations and completion of all the realizations.
Even giving one rupee offering to the center has these benefits. Then of course it also has the benefit of preserving the Dharma and helping to spread the Dharma.
However, the ultimate point is that this offering is benefiting all the six-realm sentient beings, not only those in your country. The center is used to do practice and any practice done there is for the six-realm sentient beings, to benefit them. Every sadhana or practice starts with the motivation to benefit mother sentient beings, so this means all the six-realm sentient beings and in particular those in your country.
Every dollar offer to the center—even one dollar, even the smallest amount of money—has all these benefits, which is received by all sentient beings. So every mosquito, every fish, every pitiful chicken that is taken on a truck to be killed, every sentient being in numberless universes receives this benefit, as well as every deva, sura and asura. So please think about this and understand this.”