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Planned Giving FAQ's

Planned Giving

Frequently Asked Questions


What is the St. Matthew’s Permanent Endowment Fund?


The Vestry of St. Matthew’s has established, through an Enabling Resolution, the St. Matthew’s Permanent Endowment Fund. This Fund consists of both designated and undesignated bequests to St Matthew’s and is governed by a Vestry elected Board of Directors. Its purpose is to enable the Parish to more completely fulfill its mission by developing its Christian based ministries beyond what is possible through its annual operating funds. The intent is that distributions from the Fund are used for their designated purpose to enhance St. Matthew’s mission and do not subsidize the operating budget.


What is the Legacy Society?

The Legacy Society includes those people who have chosen to remember St. Matthew’s through their estate plans. The Legacy Society celebrates fulfilled and expected planned gifts to St. Matthew’s Church and to the St. Matthew’s Permanent Endowment Fund in order to provide support for the church’s mission for many years to come.

What is the Permanent Endowment Board of Directors?

The Board of Directors is a 5 member board elected by the Vestry to serve as the Trustees of the Permanent Endowment Fund. The Board manages the investments of the Fund and is responsible for its operating policies and procedures. It determines the investment goals of the Permanent Endowment Fund and sets the Spending Rules for distributions to the Vestry for both designated and undesignated distributions. The Board of Directors will also facilitate parish education on end of life topics such as estate planning, trusts, advance directives and planned giving.

How will bequests made to the Permanent Endowment Fund be used?

Since the Permanent Endowment Fund was created to exist in perpetuity, the annual distributions from the Fund will be based on the Total Return Principle and Board of Director’s Spending Rules. Any distributions made available to the Vestry will be limited to the following uses:

1.Capital needs of St. Matthew’s

2.Outreach ministries and grants

3.Seed money for new ministries and special projects

4.Purposes specifically designated by the donor

What is the difference between a designated and undesignated bequest?

A designated bequest is one in which the distributions are restricted and will only be used in accordance with the donor’s wishes as originally outlined when the gift was made. An undesignated bequest is one in which the distributions are unrestricted to the Vestry but will be used for capital needs, outreach ministries, seed money for new ministries or special projects. While the assets of designated and undesignated funds will be merged for investment purposes, the identity and purpose of each designated fund will be preserved.

How can a designated fund be established?

A separate and designated fund within the Permanent Endowment Fund may be established for gifts in the amount of $15,000 or more. Per the Spending Rules, distributions will be faithfully restricted to the donor’s wishes. The Board of Directors may establish and individual fund with a lesser amount if the assurances from the donor that the minimum will be reached in a reasonable time.

What is Total Return Principle?

Total Return is a method where a stated percentage of the assets of the Fund (corpus) is distributed annually. It is based on 3 factors affecting the value of the Fund: the net asset value (NAV) or price of the investments, the accumulation of dividends or income from the investments, and compounding factors over time. For example, if the investments grew by 6% and produced income of 4%, the Total Return would be 10%. The Spending Rule may determine that 5% of the Fund’s value is available for distribution that year.