Legacies are a lifeline for our parishes. Church of England parishes receive over 4,000 legacies each year - gifts to finance mission projects, maintain beautiful church buildings and grow faithful communities. These gifts make a real difference to the future work of the Church - as regular giving often concentrates on maintaining the existing mission and ministry.
God gave us everything we own. Our stewardship beliefs and practices teach us that when we have no further use for our earthly possessions, we give back to God. Gifts in Wills are an important part of Christian giving, and leaving a gift to your church is a way to thank God for all the blessings you have received in your lifetime.
Most people will only leave a gift in their will if they think their church will use it for worthwhile projects, not simply to fund operating costs. A legacy policy allows the PCC to prepare and discuss how they would wish to see a gift used. It can also help to reassure those interested that the PCC has a policy in place.
PCCs should agree a policy on how potential legacy income will be spent, and then communicate it to the congregation. It is also advisable to discourage restricted gifts since the needs of a church will change over time. Follow this link to download a template to allow you to create your own local church legacy policy www.parishresources.org.uk/legacies/developing-a-legacy-policy
Family and friends often wish to donate a gift to a church in memory of a loved one or friend, perhaps in the form of an item to beautify a church, or for use in worship or church activities. A useful guide to encouraging and receiving 'in memoriam' gifts can be found here.
Sharing in the experience of others, whose churches have been transformed by a legacy gift, is a great way of encouraging others to promote legacy giving within the local church. Follow this link to read some amazing stories www.churchlegacy.org.uk/an-amazing-gift/an-amazing-gift
A copy of a presentation by the Church of England National Legacy & Funding Officer may be found here
Your full toolkit
Request your free PCC Legacy Toolkit from the Church Legacy pages of the Parish Resources website here.
Please contact the finance team
Contact the National Legacy Officer here.