Once you’ve decided to be more intentional about planned giving at your church, where should you start? The best way to help your church receive more major gifts and bequests is to give your congregation consistent, gentle reminders. You should aim to remind your members at least once per quarter. Here are eight easy ways to do that:
1. Add a footer to your letterhead that says “Please remember the church in your will.”
2. Provide our brochure with suggested bequest language to your members as a bulletin insert or in a paper mailing.
3. Invite the Foundation to teach a will writing workshop at your church. Call us at (800) 488-4179.
4. Sign up for the Foundation’s e-magazine to receive fresh planned giving content every week which you can share in your newsletter, church website, or Facebook page.
5. Add a planned giving page to your website (or just add a link to the Foundation’s planned giving page).
6. When you preach on stewardship, make sure to mention stewardship beyond your lifetime.
7. During your annual stewardship campaign, add a checkbox to your pledge cards that says, “Please contact me about Planned Giving.” (When people check that box, you can always call us for advice before following up with them!)
8. Best of all: Publicly celebrate the difference that bequests have made in your congregation!
By Julia Frisbie, Associate Director, NWUMF