Dan74 wrote:I thought this was quite common practice anyway, in that monks would spend time with the largest benefactors.
Indeed, there are passages like this all over the suttas:
King Kiki Kàsiràjà took a low seat and siting said thus to the Blessed One [Former Buddha Kassapa]: Venerable sir, may the Blessed One accept to spend the rains in Benares, I will attend on the Blessed One and the community in this manner. The Blessed One Kassapa perfect and rightfully enlightened said I have already accepted to spend the rains. King Kiki Kàsiràjà entreated the Blessed One up to the third time and the Blessed One Kassapa said I have already accepted to spend the rains. Then king Kiki Kàsiràjà was displeased and unpleasant, thinking, the Blessed One Kassapa perfect rightfully enlightened does not accept my invitation. He asked the Blessed One Kassapa. Venerable sir, is there some other enticing supporter? Great king, in the chief village, Vebhalinga there is a potter named Ghatikara, he is my chief supporter. http://www.metta.lk/tipitaka/2Sutta-Pit ... ra-e1.html
It should be clear to anyone with more than a casual involvement that the millions of dollars it takes to build and support even modest monasteries generally comes from rich supporters, like those in the Suttas.
Mostly such things are organised quietly (such as who are going to be major sponsors of a Kathina ceremony). I think this is an interesting move, which makes the process crystal clear.