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About Holston

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

How is the Foundation Organized?
The Holston Conference of the United Methodist Church Foundation, Inc. is registered as a Tennessee not-for-profit corporation and is also registered as an approved 501(c)(3) charitable organization by the Internal Revenue Service. The Foundation's charter was approved by The Holston Annual Conference in 1979. The board of directors is confirmed by the annual conference, and a detailed report of the Foundation is published each year along with an audited financial report.

Who supervises the Foundation?
The Foundation is supervised by its board of directors, made up of clergy and lay leaders from throughout the Holston Conference. The board has approximately 25 elected members and two Ex-officio members, including the Bishop and the Conference Treasurer. A list of board members and officers is available upon request. The full board meets twice each year and has active executive, investment, nominating, conference relations, gift, and grant committees.

How does the Foundation serve local churches?
The Foundation serves local churches in a variety of ways:

  • We counsel with churches interested in establishing a wills and legacies task force or endowment committee. The Foundation provides a variety of printed resources that churches can use in promoting this emphasis (see Funding the Future).
  • The Foundation's Executive Director is a frequent speaker at local church services and special events, including leadership/committee meetings, United Methodist Men/Women's events, and estate planning seminars (see Planned Giving in the Local Church).
  • Many people contemplating significant gifts or bequests frequently visit with their pastor or professional advisor for advice. The Foundation's Executive Director can counsel with those interested or can provide the appropriate advisor with information.
  • The Foundation offers expert management of church endowments and other designated funds.

How is the operating budget of the Foundation funded?
The operating budget is funded by investment management fees and income from the Foundation's own endowment. The Foundation's budget is not underwritten by the annual conference.

Will the Foundation write my will for me?
The Foundation strongly recommends that an attorney write your will. A handwritten (holographic) will is not recommended. If you want to benefit the Church in some way through your will, the Foundation can counsel with you to bring into focus all of the concerns that should be considered so that an attorney can write a will that meets your needs and desires (see The Making of a Will).

Does a gift given to or managed by the Foundation have to benefit the Foundation?
Absolutely not. In fact, most of the gift funds managed by the Foundation benefit some other United Methodist ministry. Our mission is to help United Methodists support whatever part of the church is of importance to them.

Can the Foundation handle a gift that benefits more than one person or institution?
Certainly. The Foundation serves as trustee of numerous charitable funds in which the income or assets are distributed to several combinations of local churches, institutions and ministries.

Should a gift to the Foundation be designated for a specific purpose?
It depends upon what the donor wants to accomplish. The designation of gifts may either be broad or specific. It is helpful to the Church at times to have undesignated endowments that can be used for "seed" money for emerging needs. Donors have many options in this area, and the Foundation can help donors select the best approach to meet their intentions. The Foundation would suggest that donors provide for flexibility especially in gifts establishing endowments (see Five Reasons to Create an Endowment), and that unforeseen needs in the future be considered.

Does the Foundation accept gifts of property?
Certainly. Many of the charitable funds we manage were created with gifts of real estate or securities. There can be significant tax advantages to the donor in making a gift with appreciated real property or securities rather than with cash. The Foundation is prepared to explain these advantages more fully at your request.

What type of giving plans does the Foundation offer?
There are three major types of gifts.

Outright gifts . An outright gift of cash, securities, land, etc. is made during your lifetime. The gift is irrevocable, and is 100% income tax deductible.

Life income agreements. Life income agreements, including charitable trusts and charitable gift annuities, allow you to make a gift during your lifetime but retain the income from your gift for the remainder of your life. The Foundation offers numerous life income gift plans, and they can present many benefits. When properly drawn, they are partially tax deductible. Income may also be directed to other friends or relatives, if the donor desires.

Bequests. For many, a bequest is an ideal giving plan because it allows you to plan a gift to become effective at your death that is probably more significant than anything you could have done during your lifetime. Charitable bequests are deductible for estate tax purposes. If you are contemplating a significant gift, or if you're just curious about your bequest options or how any giving plans work, the Foundation would be pleased to provide additional information.

 

How are Foundation funds invested?
Under the leadership of the Foundation's investment committee, funds are invested to not only meet Methodist "socially-responsible" principles, but to provide competitive returns at a nominal cost.

Investment choices include at present (see Investment Policy for details):

Balanced Growth Fund - for long term investments of five or more years consisting of 60% equities (socially responsible using an indexed approach), 35% fixed income (U.S. Treasuries) and 5% money market.

Intermediate Income Fund - for investments of
two or more years (laddered U.S. Treasury/ Agency Notes).

Short-Term Income Fund - for short- term investments seeking higher income (one year or more).

How can I receive more information about the Foundation?
Contact:
Roger Redding
Executive Director
P.O. Box 900
Alcoa, TN 37701-0900
or call at (865) 690-8124