The vision of the board is to work to solicit contributions, honorariums, memorials, and gifts and to assist members with estate planning to accomplish their future charitable wishes.
The Foundation was started with several substantial gifts that were given to Zion Lutheran Church. The foundation board meets the wishes of the donors specifically. Whether they are to place the assets in an endowment for the earnings to be given to and shared by students studying for professional church work or clergy scholarships; or church needs or to direct the principal to fund scholarships and other church needs or activities.
Making a Gift to the Endowment Fund
The Endowment Fund is prepared to receive a wide variety of gifts, both immediate and deferred which includes:
Cash – The Endowment Fund will benefit from gifts of any size, at any time. Cash contributions provide the donor with immediate tax benefits.
Memorials – Memorial gifts are contributions of money or property made in memory of family or friends.
Bequests and Wills – Of the various channels for making capital gifts to the Foundation, the use of bequests in wills is one of the most significant. Many members feel their lifetime stewardship plan is not complete until they have made provisions through a bequest in their will for continuation of the Lord’s work at Zion. Bequests to the Foundation are deductible from the gross valuation of an estate before taxes are assessed.
Securities and Real Estate – Securities and real estate gifts are most welcome by the Foundation Fund. Tax laws recognize the value of the church in the community and encourage financial support for institutions like Zion. Appreciated securities, when given to the Foundation, provide special tax benefits to the donor including a reduction or elimination of capital gains tax.
Life Estate Contracts – This is a gift whereby the donor deeds to the Foundation a personal residence, rental property, or farm and retains the right and full benefits of living on or using the property until the donor wishes to transfer the property completely to the Foundation. This usually occurs after the donor’s death. An immediate income tax deduction and a federal estate tax deduction are allowable for this type of gift.
Deferred Gift Annuities – Property is transferred to the Foundation and a lifetime annuity is paid to the donor. The amount by which the value of the transferred property exceeds the value of the annuity is tax deductible when the transfer is made.
Life Insurance – A life insurance policy may name the Foundation as an irrevocable beneficiary providing an exceptional way for members and friends of Zion to assist the church with a modest investment during their lifetime. Premiums paid on the policy are tax deductible as annual contributions to the Foundation. Should the policy be canceled, its cash value becomes immediately available to the Foundation as a gift.
Charitable Remainders – A gift of a charitable remainder occurs when a person gives property to the Foundation but retains the interest income from that property. During a donor’s lifetime, income from the property is paid to the donor. Upon the death of the donor, the property is transferred to the Foundation.
Short Term Trust Funds – Property is placed in trust and its income is paid to the Foundation for at least ten years. At the termination of the trust, the property is returned to the donor or the donor’s heirs.
IRA & Qualified Plans – Establishing Zion Lutheran Church as the beneficiary of an IRA or qualified plan allows Zion to receive the balance of the plan upon the death of the owner.
Assurance of Charitable Contributions
All gifts to the Foundation are charitable contributions, and as such, are tax deductible for federal and state income tax purposes. Many individuals in working through tax planning with their tax consultant find that their spendable income actually can increase by making charitable contributions. Individuals are encouraged to consult an attorney or tax advisor to arrange for major gifts. The board of directors will make every effort to assist you with planning for your donations to Zion Lutheran Church Foundation.