“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted.” – Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3
In 1978, a small group of parishioners gathered with the intention of preserving the future of the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration in Dallas. That gathering created the Endowment Fund, whose primary mission is “to operate as a charitable trust for the benefit of the Church of the Transfiguration.” This Fund is critical to the future health and growth of our church, not only thru careful management and investment, but also through the thoughtful inclusion of the Endowment in our members’ estate plans. We are provided an opportunity in death to significantly bless future generations of Transfiguration parishioners, and all are encouraged to include our church in their wishes.
The Fund provides a stable financial pool of assets to protect the Church in the event of emergency, and to generate funds for the advancement of our mission. Thru continued estate and monetary remembrance gifts (and prudent management) the fund has grown and is now comprised of: The Legacy Fund and three additional funds, which serve distinct needs in our church community. The Endowment is overseen by a Board of Trustees, who ensure the funds’ proper management, and evaluate recommendations for fund distribution.
If you would like to learn more about the Endowment, please contact the church office at 972-233-1898 and ask to speak with an Endowment Trustee. You are also encouraged to download a copy of “Decisions: Not Just Between God and Me”. This pamphlet includes various important documents and resources that can help you plan for the future and take the burden from those you love.
Summary of Major Endowment Fund Policies:
The Church of The Transfiguration Endowment Fund strictly follows policies that the Trustees have adopted relating to funds, investments, gifts, grants, and spending. These policies offer consistent guidelines for the Trustees, ministries of the church, and anyone interested in starting to plan their giving to the Endowment Fund. Under the Trust Agreement and Investment Policy Statement, the Trustees delegate the investment management of funds to a professional investment advisor. Below we describe in detail two of the major policies: the Fund Policy and the Gift Acceptance Policy.
The Fund Policy
The Fund Policy, describes the four funds that make up the Endowment Fund and how separate funds have been created. The Legacy Fund, the oldest and largest of the four funds, is often the fund designated by members of the Church in their estate planning. Because the funds are not restricted, this fund has helped our Church in numerous ways through the years. Some of the projects included: retirement of remaining capital debt from the construction of the South Building, the commissioning of the Altar, expansion of our parking area, renovation of the Youth Center, capital maintenance of our Church buildings, and many other vital projects.
The Outreach Fund provides assistance and support for the Church’s Outreach ministry in response to community needs. The Music Fund is the newest fund to be created under the Endowment Fund, and provides continued support for various aspects of the Music Ministry of the Church.
The Joanna Elizabeth Pierce and Justin Ford Pierce Youth Endowment Fund (“Youth Fund”) was named for the late Jeff Pierce, who was passionate about our youth ministries and wanted to help ensure generous funds for the ministry’s future. This fund has assisted in sending youth on mission trips and our biennial pilgrimage. This is a true endowment in the sense that it is a donor-restricted fund created through a bequest for a specific purpose in perpetuity.
The Gift Acceptance Policy
The Gift Acceptance Policy, details the specific kinds of gifts the Endowment Fund can receive. All gifts are subject to acceptance by the Trustees according to this policy. Any gift of more than $25,000 is to be submitted with a completed Proposed Gift Donation Form, so that the Trustees and Chancellor may evaluate acceptance under the policy.
There are four separate funds to which gifts may be given. Gifts will be added to the Legacy Fund (the original fund) unless one of the other separate funds is designated by the donor.
Gifts that can be readily accepted under the policy include:
- Cash – unrestricted gifts by check, cashier’s check, or wire transfer may be accepted, but not cash currency; Checks should be made payable to the “Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration Endowment Fund” or to “Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration” with a note that it is for the Endowment Fund (or a specific separate fund)
- Securities – Readily marketable securities are acceptable as long as they create no tax or other liabilities for the Fund, can be liquidated, and are assignable.
- Life Insurance – The Endowment fund may be named as a beneficiary of a life insurance policy. The Fund also may accept a gift of a life insurance policy under certain circumstances.
- Planned Giving – Estate documents that provide funds or other assets to the Fund should name the “Church of the Transfiguration Endowment Fund” as beneficiary.
A special note on Planned Giving. The Endowment Fund is especially grateful for anyone who has made the decision to raise the Church to the level of family by remembering the Endowment Fund in their will or other estate planning documents as thanksgiving for God’s abundant love and for the work of the Church in seeking and serving Christ in all persons. Any time an individual expresses interest in including the Church in their estate plans, they are considered a part of the Legacy Society. Please speak with any one of the Trustees or notify the Endowment Fund of your interest in making a planned gift or bequest. The information will be kept confidential unless we have your permission to release it.
Gifts that the Fund is unable to accept or gifts that have special circumstances under the policy include the following:
- Gifts of personal property such as vehicles, furniture, boats, etc. Those items may be sold by the donor and proceeds donated to the Endowment Fund or the Church, or if they cannot readily be sold, can be donated to the Church subject to the gift policy of the Church.
- Gifts of Real Estate must be reviewed for approval by the Trustees, Rector, Vestry, and Chancellor, after appraisal, title work, survey, and environmental assessment. The property will be listed for sale, unless the Church desires to retail it for Church use.
- A gift of a mineral interest must be reviewed for approval by the Trustees and the Chancellor, after assessment of potential liabilities, cost and expenses.
- Gifts from private foundations must be reviewed for approval by the Trustees and the Chancellor, after assessment of the terms of the gift.
- No gifts can be accepted if it is inconsistent with the mission of the Church or the founding Trust Agreements of the Endowment, if the gift contains discriminatory or other unacceptable restrictions, or would cause the Endowment to have unrelated business taxable income or otherwise endanger the non-profit tax status of the Fund.