Legacy Giving

November 2nd, 2013

Legacy Giving Logo

Legacy Giving

Legacy giving is not driven so much by the church’s need for ongoing support but, rather, by the desire of Salem members to express their gratitude to God in a tangible way, in perpetuity. We have a strong church with a wonderful history. It is a chief responsibility of our generation to carry that legacy forward and to add to it during our time as leaders of this congregation. We are grateful to you, Salem members and friends, for considering your Legacy of Gratitude to the work of this congregation and the future generations who will inherit it.

Legacy Partners are people who partner with Salem Church by giving a gift to the Foundation or including Salem in their estate plan.

Each gift to the Foundation, regardless of the amount, will continue to provide for the work of our congregation throughout our lifetimes and for future generations.


What is Legacy giving?



What is a legacy gift?

A legacy gift is a gift that is given after your death, either in a will, trust or as part of a beneficiary designation. Salem has long encouraged legacy gifts. The Salem Foundation was created to encourage legacy giving and to provide a means of investing the money from legacy gifts as well as distributing the earnings from the investments.


What is the difference in giving to Salem Church or the Salem Foundation?

Gifts to the Salem Foundation are considered “endowed” meaning the money is invested and only the earnings are spent. You can leave a legacy gift directly to the church and the Council will determine what to do with it or you can leave to something more specific like youth scholarships or the Music Series. Both principle and earnings are used, this is considered a non-endowed gift.


How is an Endowed gift spent?



How is a Non-Endowed gift spent?



What can you leave to Salem Church or the Salem Foundation

How are testamentary gifts (gifts at the end of one’s life) made?

A donor should simply make Salem Endowment Fund a beneficiary or partial beneficiary (percentage or dollar amount) in one of the following ways:


o Bequest in a will.

o Beneficiary of a living trust or other trust.

o Beneficiary of life insurance.

o Beneficiary of bank account or U.S. savings bonds.

o Beneficiary of IRA, 401K or other retirement plan.

o Beneficiary of a Charitable Remainder Trust.

o Transfer of a home while retaining a life estate.


What types of property can be donated?

One may donate cash, bonds, real estate, art or other investments. However, the Endowment Board reserves the right to decline a gift that it might be unable or unwilling to manage.



Way’s to Create A Legacy Gift

1. Add the Foundation or the Church as a beneficiary of a percentage of your IRA or other retirement vehicle.

2. Add the Foundation or the Church as a beneficiary of an insurance policy.

3. Add a provision to your Will giving a percentage of your estate, after final expenses, to the Foundation or the Church.

4. Add a provision to a trust to leave a percentage to the Foundation or the Church after your death or after the death of other beneficiaries.

5. Buy a charitable annuity that pays you income for life and goes to the Foundation or Church after your death.

6. Name the Foundation or Church as the recipient of a specific asset after your death (real estate, car, or other object of value).

7. Add a “payable on death” designation to a bank or investment account naming the Foundation or the Church.


Always consult with your financial advisor before making any gift.



Q: How do legacy gifts differ from our pledges or capital campaign gifts?

A. The most significant difference is legacy gifts are given after you outreach. A legacy gift is given in your estate plan and received after your death. It can support the work of the Salem Foundation or be directed in other ways.


Q: I like the idea of leaving a legacy gift but I don’t know how to do it and I can’t afford to go toan attorney. Can someone from BLC help?

A. Absolutely. There are a number of people connected with BLC and/or the Foundation who have extensive estate expertise who will meet with you and help you determine the best thing for you to do, at the least cost.


Q: My son says I can just change the beneficiary on my IRA. Is that true?

A. Yes! You can include either the Foundation or the Church as a beneficiary on an IRA, insurance policy, annuity, or anything else that has a beneficiary designation. Don’t forget you can have more than one beneficiary so you could, for example, designate the Foundation or the Church for 10% and split the remainder among your children, other relatives or even other charities. Call the bank or institution that holds your IRA and ask them to send you a change of beneficiary form.


Q: I’d like to leave a legacy gift to Salem but I don’t know how much I’ll need for my end of life expenses. If I need a nursing home I’m afraid it will cost a lot. Any thoughts?

A. This is the beauty of a legacy gift. By remembering either the Foundation or the Church in your estate plan, you are able to see that all of your expenses are met before your final gift is made to the church – a gift made from what is left over after everything else has been paid…a gift from the leftovers!


Q: I am seeing my attorney next week about making a legacy gift to Salem. Is it better to set a dollar amount or a percentage in my will?

A. Most attorneys will tell you it is better to leave a percentage than a specific dollar amount. People who included the Foundation in their wills made 30 years ago are often surprised when reviewing their estate plans in today’s dollars. A gift of $1,000 dollars was a significant portion of the estate at that time and not so significant now. People often amend their wills or trusts to a percentage rather than a specific dollar amount as a percentage takes care of inflation and keeps all the beneficiaries in proportionate shares.


Q: My children have made it clear that they don’t want my house and are dreading the time when they have to clean it out. Can I give my house to Salem and my money to my children and grandchildren?

A. Yes! That’s often a win-win for everyone. You can leave your house to the Foundation or the Church with the provision that your children and grandchildren can remove any personal property they might want. Anything left stays with the house.


Q: What is the right amount to give the church at my death?

A. Any amount that you want to give is the right amount. Some people tithe their estates and give 10%, others divide a portion between the oundation or the Church and another charity, and some have made it a practice to “adopt Jesus” as an heir. These people are sharing their estate equally between their children and the church. So if you have 3 children you would divide your estate in 4 ways – one share to each child and one share to the church.


Q: Why is Salem promoting legacy gifts to the church? That’s what the Foundation is for.

A. Some people have indicated that they would prefer to leave a gift that is not endowed. When a gift is left to the Foundation it becomes part of the Foundation’s endowment meaning that only the dividends and interest can be spent. The principal of the gift is never spent. The Foundation grants funds to a wide variety of recipients based on the guidelines established by the Foundation. If someone wants to leave money to a specific cause or program, leaving money to the church might be an  cceptable alternative. For example, if someone wants to leave money for a specific purpose such as new carpet or upgrading an elevator, they can leave money to the church with the request that it be used for that purpose if appropriate.


Are there any tax advantages in giving to Salem Endowment Funds?

Yes. Salem can provide further information upon your becoming a donor.


For more information

… contact …… at ???@salemluth.org  or    ???-???-????.



Legacy Giving Forms


Stock Transfer Form.pdf

Property Transfer Forms


Read “The Power of Leaving a Legacy,” a regular newsletter of Salem Endowment Funds that shares stories of donors and recipients. Also includes a financial overview of all funds and recent grants.

The Power of Leaving a Legacy

How to leave a legacy


Legacy Giving Newsletters

2013 October Legacy Newsletter

2013 August Legacy Newsletter

2013 January Legacy Newsletter


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