March 3, 2017

Investing with Faith / Joanna Feltz

A final gift can help build your legacy of faith

Joanna FeltzAs Catholics, we believe that once our life on Earth ends, we are born to new life. We look forward to the promise of peace with God, our Father, yet sometimes we still worry what legacy we will leave for this world. Once our souls become one with Christ, what about everything else? I know I worry about what I will leave behind for my family, my friends, and the Church.

While there are many ways to leave a legacy of our faith, planned giving offers the most personalized opportunities. The simplest and most frequently chosen type of planned gift is a bequest.

A bequest is provided through a will or trust and is funded by assets: cash, stock, bonds, mutual fund shares, real estate or other types of property. Also, a bequest may come in the form of a specific asset (land, home, stock, etc.), a specific cash amount, a percentage of assets (for example, 50 percent of your net estate to the Church), or whatever remains after all obligations and previous wishes are met.

Another simple giving technique is a beneficiary designation. You choose a charitable organization and name it as a beneficiary on an annuity, life insurance policy or retirement plan asset. After your passing, the organization receives whatever percentage of the amount of the assets you designated on your beneficiary form.

Through a bequest or beneficiary designation, donors can preserve lifetime income and earn an estate tax deduction at death, all while giving back and directly supporting the needs of future generations.

When considering planned giving, know that the archdiocesan Catholic Community Foundation (CCF) is here to help. We can answer any questions you may have, provide all giving options, and connect you to ministries, organizations or causes that could benefit from your gift. Reach me by e-mail at or by phone at 1-800-382-9836, ext. 1482, or 317-236-1482. Consider investing in your faith through planned giving.

(Joanna Feltz, J.D., is director of planned giving for the Catholic Community Foundation in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis, and consultant to the law firm Woods, Weidenmiller, Michetti, Rudnick & Galbraith PLLC. For more information about planned giving, log on to Tax information or legal information provided herein is not intended as tax or legal advice and cannot be relied on to avoid statutory penalties. Always check with your legal, tax and financial advisors before implementing any gift plan.)

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