April 21, 2017

Investing with Faith / Joanna Feltz

Benefiting the Church through charitable trusts

Joanna FeltzApril brings showers, taxes and, more often than not, Easter. This April, we closed out the Lenten season and celebrated Easter.

Jesus died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, and through his death, we are afforded the opportunity to be born to new life.

As we celebrate the glorious resurrection of Christ, it’s important we identify ways to give, so that when we die, we can continue to provide opportunities to others, from access to food or shelter, a Catholic education, assisting seminarians with their education, or even helping a youth attend CYO Camp Rancho Framasa in Brown County during the summer.

While we hope to die and be born to eternal life, actions we take now can have a positive impact on the world and the Church we leave behind.

Over the last few months, I have been sharing the basics of planned giving along with the most typical ways people give.

Since January, we’ve covered bequests, beneficiary designations and charitable gift annuities. In today’s column, we will wrap up our traditional donation types with charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts.

A charitable remainder trust, established by a donor with cash or property, makes payments back to the donor or beneficiary for their lifetime or a term of years. The portion left in the trust after distribution obligations are fulfilled goes to the parish, school or other ministry designated by the donor.

Charitable remainder trusts are an excellent option for donors who want to establish a trust with an appreciated asset, such as stocks, mutual fund shares or real estate that will provide higher income while avoiding paying capital gains on the asset’s sale. Donors benefit since they can bypass capital gains, increase their own or a loved one’s income, and receive a charitable tax deduction.

A charitable lead trust, established by a donor with cash or property, makes payments for a specified period of time to the Church. After that time expires, what remains in the trust is distributed to the donor’s loved ones. Charitable lead trusts are ideal for donors who want to make a gift to the Church and pay as little gift or estate tax as possible, while eventually leaving something for their beneficiaries. Donors benefit since they are able to make a gift up-front to the Church, receive a greater gift or estate tax deduction and pass the appreciation of those assets on to their family.

Planned giving is easier than you think. Whether you choose a charitable remainder trust or a charitable lead trust, you will make a difference in other people’s lives.

Still not sure which planned giving option is right for you? My team at the archdiocesan Catholic Community Foundation can explain the process in more detail and answer any questions you may have.

Reach out to me by e-mail at jfeltz@archindy.org 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 www.archindy.org/plannedgiving. 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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