“If you know the name John Trumbull, you may recall that he was a famous Revolutionary War artist whose work included The Declaration of Independence and Battle of Bunker’s Hill. After creating four large paintings for the Capitol Rotunda, he failed to secure commissions for four more, and his fortunes began to decline.
Widowed and alone at age 75, he had an apartment full of unsold paintings and no income. In his Reminiscences, Trumball talks about being forced to sell furniture and dishes to survive. But out of this necessity was born a modern invention. Indeed, Trumbull made financial history when he offered to give a number of his paintings to Yale University if they would in turn pay him a suitable income ($1,000 per year) for the remainder of his life. In so doing, he became the first donor to ever use a charitable gift annuity to finance his retirement. Benjamin Silliman, a Yale professor, brokered Trumbull’s gift and in the process created the nation’s first collegiate art museum.
From this humble beginning, the gift annuity has evolved into the workhorse of philanthropy, benefiting both donors and charities, and giving individuals of diverse means the opportunity to leave a charitable legacy.”*
Just like John Trumball and thousands of donors since, pastors and donors in the WOC can benefit from a Charitable Gift Annuity, too, made possible by the United Methodist Foundation of West Ohio. It’s a low-cost, tax-friendly way to make a gift to charity that creates an income for the donor, and ultimately benefits the Church.
Here’s how a CGA works: complete a CGA contract with the Foundation with an initial minimum gift of $5000 in cash or securities. Per the agreement, the Foundation will pay the annuitant (and a survivor annuitant, if desired) a fixed income for life. Quarterly payments are calculated by age of the annuitant(s) and the amount of the gift; and payments begin promptly with the next quarterly cycle. Upon the death of the annuitant and survivor annuitant, any remaining assets are transferred to the donor’s specified beneficiary: a church, ministry, or mission of the West Ohio Conference.
Making a legacy gift in this way is an efficient process involving a one-page application, which takes a few minutes to complete and can be accomplished via mail, a short visit to the West Ohio Conference office, or a visit to your home or office by Foundation staff.
Contact Susan Black at sblack [at] wocumc.org or call 380-223-9339 to learn more.
This is a story that Jackie Jacobs of Jewish Federation of Columbus included in her 2018 article in The Ohio Jewish Chronicle.