Of the three gifts we can give to our parish – time, talent, and treasure – only the gift of treasure will continue to give back after we’ve gone to heaven. After a lifetime of giving time and talent to various ministries, many people find great joy in the ability to leave lasting, meaningful gifts of treasure as their legacy.
On Tuesday, May 23, the Catholic Community Foundation of Santa Clara County hosted a Planned Giving Seminar at Saint Lucy Parish, bringing ideas to parish and parish school leadership that may inspire their communities about legacy and planned gifts. Bill Marsella came all the way from The Catholic Community Foundation of Minnesota, the largest Catholic Community Foundation in the United States, to inspire the 56 seminar attendees. This was a special opportunity for Marsella who is originally from California, and never before had the opportunity to give this presentation for his parents and sister who were in attendance. Marsella shared stories about how his faith journey brought him closer to his father and encouraged everyone to consider the gifts their faith has given them.
The goal of the event was twofold: to inspire and equip. Father Warwick James, Father Mark Arnzen, and Saint Lawrence the Martyr parishioner Michael Kalt all offered prayers, personal stories, and inspiration about endowment and planned giving.
The second half of the program focused on giving the audience a basic overview of different planned giving strategies. James Cashman and Raymond Triplett presented specific legal and financial tools to help potential donors make secure and financially savvy gifts to charity. Lastly, Mary Aumack, Executive Director of The Catholic Community Foundation of Santa Clara County, briefly spoke about the services the Foundation offers to assist parish and school staff as well as donors. Each attendee also left with a packet of tools (including a sample marketing plan and sample letter about planned giving) and information for further reading.
Sixteen parishes were represented in the audience of the seminar. In attendance were nine pastors, eight school staff members, and many parish volunteers, finance council members and staff. Due to the excellent turnout and positive feedback from attendees, the Foundation is planning to repeat this event.
If you have questions about planned giving for yourself or would like to start a planned giving program at your parish or school, please contact The Catholic Community Foundation of Santa Clara County at firstname.lastname@example.org or (408) 995-5219.