Giving Our Church a Firm Financial Footing through the Heritage Society
To ensure a financial foundation as sound as that of the church itself, the Heritage Society of The First Congregational Church of Ann Arbor was founded in 1967. The goal was to create a fund that would protect future generations of the congregation from large ever-increasing maintenance bills. Today, after years of generous support through contributions and bequests, three funds generate interest income that enhances our mission and outreach, our ministry, our programs, and our building. A plaque honoring Heritage Society contributors hangs in the Mayflower Room in the church.
The Funds of the Heritage Society
The Church has two endowment funds and an investment fund:
The Maintenance Endowment Fund is used for maintaining, rehabilitating, or expanding the physical plant. The corpus cannot be touched. Income from the fund is available for commitment to a project.
The Program Endowment Fund is used for expenses related to church activities. The corpus cannot be touched. Income from the fund is available for commitment to church programs or activities.
The General Investment Fund may be used for any general purpose of the church. In the event of an emergency, the corpus may be used by a two-thirds vote of the Trustees. Income from the trust is available for any expense of the church.
We invite you to become a part of the Heritage Society, to leave a legacy that will live on for generations. When you become a member of the Heritage Society through your contribution or your trust or will, your gift becomes a part of the corpus of that fund. The proceeds earned from your bequest will provide money to support our church long into the future. Through your gift you are a part of this church forever.
Ways of Giving
You can tailor your method of giving to meet your objectives. You can give now or make a deferred gift, which assures you and your family a lifelong income while making a provision for the church. Some of the choices:
- Outright Gifts: Transfers of cash, securities, or other property. Because it immediately goes to work, an outright gift has an immediate impact on our programs. Your financial advisor can discuss tax advantages with you. Gifts can include:
- Gifts of cash
- Gifts of appreciated securities (an especially beneficial way of leveraging your gift because of the tax advantages)
- Gifts of real estate
- Gifts with Retained Interest: By retaining an interest in your gift, you can continue to hold certain rights in it until it is conveyed to First Congregational Church. At a future time, plans you make today will help support the church.
- Life Income Gifts
- Charitable Lead Trusts
- Gifts of Life Insurance
- Retirement Plan Gifts
- Gifts with Retention of a Life Estate
- Bequest by Will or Living Trust: The most common form of deferred or planned giving is a charitable bequest. A will or living trust is a very personal matter and should be prepared with an attorney.
- Gifts with Retention of a Life Estate: You may bequeath your home or other property to the First Congregational Church while retaining the right to occupy, rent or otherwise use the property during your lifetime.
Giving is a very personal issue. Think about what The First Congregational Church of Ann Arbor means to you and what it will mean to those who come after you. Your method of giving should fit your circumstances. Because the church’s needs change, many donors prefer to leave an unrestricted gift to the General Investment Fund so that the income generated may be used for the most urgent needs. Others prefer to give to one of the endowment funds. The choice is yours.
For more information about the Heritage Society or the funds, a member of the Heritage Committee can answer your questions. Call the church office at (734) 662-1679 or e-mail . To make sure you get the maximum tax and legal advantages for a gift, contact your professional financial or legal advisor. If you would like a referral, please call the church office.