St. Thomas' Episcopal Church
STEWARDSHIP AND GIVING
stewardship is the grateful and responsible use of God’s gifts.
“Grateful” because we know God loves us and wants us to have what
we need to live a joyful and productive life.
All that we are and all that we have are gifts from God.
“Responsible” because we know God wants us to use these gifts to
do the work God is calling us to do – to make the world a better place.
is the main work of the Church. It
is how we use God’s gifts to us to praise and honor God and care for
God’s creation. It is living
life in thanksgiving.
within the church is much more than a six-week fund raising campaign each
Fall, it is the work of healing and reconciliation.
We are called to be stewards every day of the year, by the use of our
time, talents, and treasure. We
are asked to give what we can, and to give it cheerfully. The point isn’t the amount of an annual pledge to St.
Thomas, but the attitude with which it is made.
Giving freely to God’s work through the work of St. Thomas allows
all of us to reap bountifully, both in running our church and in our many
important outreach ministries.
giving, in which one starts by pledging some percentage of one’s annual
income, then increasing that percentage in subsequent years, makes it easy
to become a “cheerful” giver.
to this chart for information on proportionate giving:
The following information is not intended as legal or tax advice, but as general information on planned giving. For legal or tax advice, consult your lawyer or tax advisor.
giving, deferred giving, estate giving – all of these are names for a way
of managing your financial affairs, planning for the future, and making
charitable contributions in a way most favorable, tax-wise. Nearly all of the good works flowing from St. Thomas are
dependent on the availability of funding, now and in the future.
You can be a good steward of God’s bounty by making a planned gift
to St. Thomas. This generosity
helps ensure the continued ministry of your
church and serves as a testament of your values for future generations.
can be to St. Thomas or to the St. Thomas Endowment Fund.
If given directly to St. Thomas, the Vestry will determine how the
gift will be used. A gift to
the Endowment Fund is invested and income from the Endowment Fund is used as
directed in the Fund documents. Currently, no more than half can be used for operating
expenses of the church, at least one-fourth is to be used for Christian
Outreach, and at least one-fourth is to be designated for capital needs of
are some of the most common types of planned giving:
a bequest in your will.
you leave a bequest to St. Thomas through your will or living trust, you can
make a generous gift without reducing your current income.
Charitable bequests are normally deductible in full for estate tax
purposes. You retain the use of
the assets during your life.
bequest may be a simple gift of cash or property. For example: “I
give and bequeath the sum of $10,000 to the Endowment Fund of St. Thomas
Episcopal Church, Reidsville, North Carolina;” or, “I give and bequeath
my stock in International Widget Company to St. Thomas Episcopal Church,
Reidsville, North Carolina”
may involve leaving a percentage of the net estate, such as:
“I devise and bequeath 10% of the remainder and residue of property
owned at my death, both real and personal and wherever located, to St.
Thomas Episcopal Church, Reidsville, North Carolina.”
the bequest may be contingent, as in “If my brother, John Doe, survives
me, I devise and bequeath 20% of the remainder and residue of property owned
at my death. Should John Doe predecease me, then I devise and bequeath said
20% to the Endowment Fund of
St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Reidsville, North Carolina”
charitable remainder trust allows you to give a sum of money to St. Thomas
and retain periodic payments. These
trusts make periodic payments to the donor for life or for a term up to 20
years. Upon termination of the
trust, the remaining assets are used for the intended charitable purpose.
are two types of charitable remainder trusts:
“unitrust” is good for those who want to participate in market gains and
can tolerate some risk. Income
is adjusted annually as a fixed percentage of fair market value of the
“annuity trust” is attractive to persons who wish to avoid risk.
Income payments are fixed and determined when the gift is made.
of these trusts allows the donor to receive cash flow while still making a
significant gift to St. Thomas. If
established during your lifetime, there may be some income tax savings.
There is a partial bypass of capital gains tax when funded with
plans or assets.
disposition of assets held in IRAs and retirement plan accounts (for
example, 401(k), 401(a), 403(b) or 457 plan accounts) is governed by
beneficiary designations for the accounts.
You can give the assets or a portion of the assets in these accounts
to St. Thomas and/or the Endowment Fund.
retirement assets to make charitable gifts at death has the advantage that
long-deferred, usually significant, income tax on highly appreciated
retirement accounts will not be incurred by you, your family, or St. Thomas.
The beneficiary can accept the funds with no income or estate tax.
you have a life insurance policy you no longer need, a gift of it to St.
Thomas can be a way to combine charitable objectives with tax advantages to
you. An irrevocable gift of
life insurance my be appropriate when the growth of your assets or the
reduced needs of your dependents make the policy unnecessary.
retirement assets, life insurance proceeds are paid to the beneficiary
designated by the policy owner. To
make such a gift, St. Thomas or the St. Thomas Endowment Fund must be named
as the beneficiary. As with
retirement accounts, you can choose the amount to paid to the selected
beneficiary – either as a set dollar amount, a percentage, or all of the
proceeds. You can also make a
current gift of a life insurance policy with a cash value by transferring
ownership of the policy to St. Thomas or the Endowment Fund.
should receive an income tax deduction equal to the cash value when you name
St. Thomas or the Endowment Fund as owner of a life insurance policy.
If you continue to make premium payments after you have made the
gift, those payments may also be deductible. The amount of the deduction
depends on the type of policy contributed and other factors.
more information about planned giving to St. Thomas, check the web site of
the Episcopal Church Foundation, www.giftlegacy.com.
you intend to include St. Thomas as part of your planned giving, it would be
helpful to send this non-binding
letter of intent to assist the church in its planning.
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This page was last updated 03/14/08