Americans are some of the most generous people in the world, giving much time and money to those organizations that they best identify with and feel are the worthiest of their support. As the year comes to an end, some of us look back and realize that although we had intended to volunteer our time or make a charitable gift to our favorite organization, the business of daily life prevented us from doing so.
While the Annual Catholic Appeal has not yet reached its goal, and the needs of our community are increasing, now would be a good time for each one of us to consider making a gift before the year ends. By making a donation to the Annual Catholic Appeal, donors are assured that their dollars will be efficiently and effectively used to assist those in our community. It could be in the form of education and support of our seminarians, spiritual renewal, evangelization of our youth, food at one of our community ministries, behavioral counseling and emergency basic needs at Catholic Charities, to touch on only a few of our many ACA supported ministries.
While you consider where your heart lies and if you are able to make a gift to the ACA, it would be helpful to also contemplate the various gifting methods:
- Making charitable distributions directly to qualified charities such as the ACA from your IRA if you are 70 ½ and older, up to $100,000 per year on a tax-free basis. Transfers are not taxed and count towards your annual Required Minimum Distribution.
- Donating appreciated stock and securities. You will be entitled to a charitable deduction equal to the fair market value of the donated stocks and securities, subject to limitation based upon your adjusted gross income. In addition, you will avoid income tax on the capital gain of those stocks and securities while supporting the mission of your favorite Diocesan organization.
- Cashing in expired U.S. savings bonds. Check to see if the series savings bonds you have tucked away have recently reached “final maturity” and no longer pay interest. Contributing the proceeds from these bonds to your favorite Diocesan organization will produce a charitable deduction.
- Thinking about being creative with your giving. If you no longer need the proceeds of your life insurance policy because your children are grown, you can change the beneficiary or gift a paid-up policy to your favorite Diocesan organization.
- Adding the Diocese as a beneficiary of your retirement plan.
- Amending your will to include the ACA or your favorite Diocesan organization as a beneficiary. You may want to leave specific assets or a percentage of your estate to your parish, school, or other Diocesan ministry.
- Establishing an endowment within the Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Norwich to support your chosen Diocesan entity or contribute to one of the 34 existing endowment funds currently being managed by the Catholic Foundation.
For more information on making a gift to the ACA, Hand in Hand with All God’s Children, or about any of the other gifting opportunities described above, please feel free to contact me, Mary Ellen Mahoney, Director, Office of Development at memahoney@ norwichdiocese.net, (860) 886- 1928, ext. 113, or go online at NorwichDioceseDevelopment.org. As always, consult with your tax professional, financial advisor and/or attorney before making any decisions.
By Mary Ellen Mahoney