Stewardship is an intentional choice of how to share our time, talent and treasure in support of what we value. UUCC members give ongoing support by attending Sunday services, participating in church programs, volunteering time and talents, and making annual pledges to the operating budget.
When we intentionally share our gifts, we experience the joy of giving and a sense that we are making a difference.
Members often ask about arrangements for paying their stewardship pledge. Here are the options currently offered by UUCC.
- Bill pay services through their bank. Most banks offer this service, and it is the best option because it is free. The bank will mail a check to the church on request or based on a schedule you define. All you need is the church name (you can abbreviate it UUCC), address, and phone number to set this up.
- PayPal – Look for firstname.lastname@example.org to set up payments using your PayPal account (you will have to set up a PayPal account if you don’t already have one). Note that PayPal fees are about 2.5%, so UUCC will receive only 97.5% of your gift.
- Realm – This is the Church membership database, and you will need to set up an account if you don’t already have one. Contact Sharon Edmond (email@example.com) at the church for assistance. Realm fees are about 1% if you pay from your checking account, 2.5% if you use a credit card.
Stock gifts. This is a great option if you have stocks that have appreciated (the more the better!). The church receives the full current value of the donated stock, but you do not pay capital gains tax that would be due if you sold the stock. In addition, if you itemize deductions you can deduct the full value of the stock, reducing your taxes even further. See the “Stock Gifts” link for instructions on how to initiate a gift. Don’t worry about the situation where the stock value exceeds your pledge, you can ask for the excess to be applied to the following year.
Charitable gift trust. Many of these exist. In this scenario you give your appreciated stock to the gift trust, and then direct the trust to send money to charities you choose. Again, you avoid capital gains tax. You get the charitable deduction when you give the stock to the trust (you do not get a deduction when the trust gives money to the charity). But you can use the gift trust money to support all of your charities, usually with a minimum dollar amount like $50. The gift trust does charge an annual service fee – the fee structure varies between trusts. Also, gifts to the trust are final.
IRA Distribution. If you have an IRA and have reached the age where there are Required Minimum Distributions (RMD), you can have the IRA administrator send the distribution directly to a charitable organization. This will satisfy your RMD without incurring a tax on the amount (the gift to the Church is NOT deductible on Schedule A, however).
It is important to note that the money must go directly to a charitable institution (you can’t move this to a charitable gift trust). Also, your IRA administrator may limit the number of such gifts you can make, or the minimum amount for each withdrawal. Therefore, this is best used for your largest charitable gifts.
To discuss any of these options further, please contact our Bookkeeper at 216-751-2320 x105.