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Estate Planning is Stewardship

Charitable Giving Concepts

Giving Appreciated Assets

Appreciated assets are those possessions which have "appreciated" or increased in value over time. The most common examples of these assets would be real estate, stocks and other securities. If the owner sells this type of asset, capital gains tax is then due on the appreciated amount.

By donating the appreciated asset to a ministry organization (instead of selling and giving the cash proceeds) the donor can avoid the capital gains tax. Giving appreciated assets can fulfill the charitable desires of the donor while not impeding their normal cash flow.

Appreciated assets can be given outright to a charitable organization or they can be used to fund a variety of different gift arrangements.

Tithing Your Estate

Tithing is a basic Christian tenant of stewardship. Tithing your estate at the end of a lifetime devoted to Christian stewardship and service is an appropriate testimony for believers. Even the faithful lifetime tither may never have tithed on an appreciated asset such as real estate, securities, or retirement accounts.

The concept of Tithing Your Estate offers a basic formula for honoring God with our estate stewardship. Simply leave a percentage of your estate, typically ten percent, to the ministry of your choice. You may contact the Foundation for appropriate bequest language to ensure that your wishes are accomplished through your will or trust distribution.

Equal Heir

Perhaps one of the simplest ways to leave gifts to ministry is to consider that ministry an Equal Heir to your estate along with your family. If there are three heirs in your plans, then the minstry is considered as a fourth heir. The estate is divided four ways instead of three.

Give It Twice

Giving to children and to charity sounds attractive, but it is possible to leave a significant legacy for ministry and at the same time leave an adequate inheritance for family. A "Give It Twice" arrangement allows both through a three-step process that is accomplished through a unique trust arrangement.

  • Designate certain assets, or a certain percentage of your estate, to a designated trust arrangement during your lifetime through a will or beneficiary statement of life insurance or retirement accounts. Your estate remains fully available for your use during your lifetime and, if married, the life of your spouse.
  • Children or other beneficiaries receive the net earnings from the established trust after your death. They can receive the earnings for a specified period of years or until they receive a specified sum, such as an amount equal to or greater than the original trust value.
  • Upon completion of the payment of the earnings to children or other beneficiaries, the designated ministry you have chosen then receives the trust, which converts to an endowment fund or an outright gift to the ministry.


An endowment consists of cash or property donated with the intent of producing income for the ministry or charity. The donated asset is place in an account that restricts the use of the principal or "corpus" of the fund.

The corpus is invested with the income of the fund distributed, at least annually, to the ministry it has been created to support. The principal of the fund is held in perpetuity and will earn income to be distributed to the charitable beneficiary forever.

Memorial Gifts

Many times individuals desire to honor a family member or friend and support their favorite Baptist ministry at the same time. Titling a trust or endowment in honor or memory of a person or persons will pass the income to your chosen ministry in the name of the honorees. A one-time gift can also be used as a memorial to loved ones.