While parishioners support the current needs of the parish through the offertory with disposable income, each has the capacity to support the future needs of the parish by donating appreciated assets through their Last Wills.
Perhaps you have heard the old adage: When is the best time to create a permanent endowment? Twenty years ago. When in the next best time? Today.
That is true for one parish whose pastor and councils created the first of several permanent endowments more than 20 years ago. Thanks to their vision, that parish received $100,000 in our most recent annual distribution.
Encouraging endowments demonstrates long-range visioning by embracing the desires of today’s Catholics who wish to include faith-based remembrances in their personal legacies. Sadly, though, many Catholics do not perceive their parish to be more worthy than a college or university that has already convinced them to leave their legacy on campus. Yet we all know a Catholic legacy gift that strengthen the Kingdom of God will outlast anything made from brick and mortar.
Parishes can position themselves as worthy recipients of legacy gifts by:
- Establishing a parish endowment to receive memorial gifts and bequests;
- Regularly remind parishioners to include the parish in their Will;
- Sponsor estate planning sessions for interested parishioners;
- Acknowledge endowment donors (with their permission);
- Communicate how annual endowment distributions benefit the parish.
The Independent Catholic Foundation assists parishes in promoting legacy gift planning initiatives through presentations to parish finance and pastoral councils and individuals, custom-designed bulletin flyers (sample shown at right), etc. Please contact us at (814) 201-2080 for details.