Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Advance Directive- Memorial Gifts

By: Barry G. Allen- President & CEO

When you die, to what charity(s) do you want your friends and family to send gifts in your memory? Perhaps you are like most people who do not give this any advance thought. As a result, that decision is left to family or other legal representatives, who may not know what your wishes were. Because you did not make your wishes known in advance, those charitable causes near and dear to your heart may not be the ones your family or others choose. What a missed opportunity for you and for those charitable organizations!

Interestingly enough, more people understand the need for advance directives and the right to make informed decisions when it comes to medical care and life prolonging treatment. The most common advance directives are a living will, healthcare surrogate designation, durable power of attorney, mental treatment directive and organ donation. Just as the decision to execute one or more of those types of advance directives is a very important matter, and one of personal choice, so is the decision about directing memorial gifts.

On this Memorial Day week I want to encourage you to consider what charities, including your church, you would want to be the beneficiary of gifts in your memory, and to make those known orally and in writing to the one(s) who will be handling your affairs at death.

Furthermore, I want to encourage you to consider using the KBF to facilitate your desires regarding memorial gifts. One idea is for you to establish now a permanent endowment fund that would provide income in perpetuity to the charities you want to be the beneficiary of memorial gifts. An endowment can be established with a modest gift of cash or appreciated securities or real estate. You and others can continue to make periodic contributions during your lifetime to grow the fund. Then at death, you could have a bequest in your estate plan to add to the fund along with the memorial gifts that will come from family and friends as a result of your advance directive.

Call Laurie Valentine or me at (502) 489-3533 or 1-866-489-3533 (Toll-free, Kentucky only)
for more information about how we can assist you.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Browns: Scholarship Beneficiaries

Although Karen and Dudley Brown of Frankfort knew they were having triplets, they thought all were boys until Torie followed the birth of her brothers Dustin and J.W. at Lexington’s Central Baptist Hospital. Now the triplets have all graduated from Georgetown College. Torie graduated cum laude; majoring in psychology. Dustin and J.W. were business majors.

Having reared these triplets and two older sons, Mike and Todd, Karen and Dudley never dreamed the triplets would have been able to attend a private, Christian school. They always wanted them to receive a liberal arts education in a Christian setting, but did not think it would be financial feasible until Kojo Poku, Georgetown’s admission’s counselor, enlightened them about the financial aid opportunities from Georgetown and the Kentucky Baptist Foundation. The combination of scholarships and full-time jobs bridged the financial gap for the Browns. For Karen and Dudley, the Kentucky Baptist Foundation scholarships were an answer to prayer. They felt fortunate and blessed to have the triplets educated at Georgetown College, which molded them into well-rounded individuals prepared to go into the world and be successful in all aspects of life.

Georgetown College staffer Kay Blevins had this to say about the Brown triplets: “Kudos to their parents, who simultaneously raised three very caring ambitious people who identify themselves as triplets but are very unique in their own individuality.”

The Kentucky Baptist Foundation is pleased to have made an investment in the Brown triplets upon the recommendation of their pastor, Wallace Kent of Crestwood Baptist Church in Frankfort. We congratulate them on their many accomplishments, recognitions and awards at Georgetown College and wish them well in following God’s call in their lives.

Each year, the Kentucky Baptist Foundation awards approximately $200,000 in scholarships to Kentucky Baptist students who attend Georgetown College, Campbellsville University and the University of the Cumberlands. This is possible because of the generosity of people like the late Francis and Ruth Moore of Lexington, whose love for their Lord and appreciation of a Christian values-based education led them to establish, via a bequest in their Wills, the Francis and Ruth Moore Scholarship Fund.

Georgetown College President Bill Crouch said, “As the first Baptist college west of the Allegheny Mountains, we are extremely grateful for the important role played by Kentucky Baptists and the Kentucky Baptist Foundation in the life and ministry of Georgetown College. We take seriously our responsibility to provide a setting where Torie, J.W., and Dustin, and all of our students will be nurtured, strengthened and challenged as they seek God’s plan and purpose for their lives. The Kentucky Baptist Foundation serves as a living testimony of the importance of Christian stewardship and to the indescribable blessing of investing in tomorrow’s Christian leaders today…”

Call Laurie Valentine or Barry Allen toll-free for assistance in developing a stewardship plan and experiencing the joy of investing in tomorrow’s Christian leaders.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bill & Kay Mackey Legacy

By: Barry G. Allen- President & CEO

            Bill Mackey is the fourth KBC executive leader with whom I have had the privilege of serving these past 40 years.  And in the spirit of Mordecai’s profession of divine providence about Queen Esther, I can profess each of these godly leaders responded to the call to lead Kentucky Baptists “for such a time as this.”  As Bill retires May 31, having been the KBC executive director since February 1, 1998, the KBF is honored to feature and pay tribute to Bill and Kay in the summer edition of our newsletter, “Living Legacy.” You can access it at www.kentuckybaptistfoundation.blogspot.com.

            I have not known anyone who has demonstrated a greater passion than Bill Mackey for strengthening local churches and expanding their visions of world evangelization – and – their commitments to the Cooperative Program as the best way to connect all people to Jesus Christ.  As a fellow Kentucky Baptist and KBC related entity leader, I say “thank you, Bill, and job well done!”

            Bill and Kay, high school sweethearts from Lancaster County, SC, married in 1963.  Across the years these two Great Commission Christians have said as much, if not more, by their lives as they have said by their lips.  And now, they are leaving a lasting legacy of their love for Christ and His mission in this world and their confidence in the Cooperative Program as the most effective way to facilitate the accomplishment of the Great Commission by establishing with the KBF the Bill and Kay Mackey Endowment Fund for the Cooperative Program.  You can express your appreciation, admiration and affection for Bill and Kay and their leadership by making a contribution in any amount to this endowment fund.  You can send a check payable to the KBF designated for this fund to: P.O. Box 436389, Louisville, KY 40253.  For gifts of appreciated assets, please call Laurie Valentine or me.

            Thank you, Bill and Kay, for your conviction, your confidence and your witness.  May we all emulate your example!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Ten Biggest Estate Planning Errors

By: Laurie Valentine- COO and Trust Counsel

1.  Not executing a Will.  If you don’t make a Wall, Kentucky will do it for you.  Your assets may not go where you want and, if your estate is big, unnecessary taxes may be paid.

2.  Wanting just a “simple Will.”  Some people leave their spouse everything regardless of the estate’s size because the spouse pays no estate taxes.  For estates over the estate tax exemption ($5,000,000 for persons dying in 2011 or 2012), that could cost your heirs.

3.  Putting everything into joint tenancy.  While that avoids probate, joint ownership between spouses has the same danger as a simple Will.  If you own property jointly with others, like children, “your” property may become subject to the claims of the child’s creditors and you may get taxed on your own property if the child dies before you.

4.  Thinking that avoiding probate will avoid taxes.  It doesn’t always.  There are advantages to avoiding probate, but saving taxes isn’t generally one of them.

5.  Leaving property to one child to “work things out.”  If you leave your assets to one child, they are not obligated to give it to other members of your family.  It may even cost them in gift taxes to redistribute your assets as you would have wanted.

6.  Letting your children “take care of” your grandchildren.  In larger estates, it may cost less for you to leave property to grandchildren directly rather than letting your children do it through their own estates. 

7.  Failing to consider how your affairs will be handled if you become incapacitated as the result of a stroke, accident or illness.   If you don’t plan, a costly guardianship may be required to give someone authority handle your personal and financial affairs.

8.  Not using trusts to help beneficiaries handle their inherited wealth.  You can ease beneficiaries into the management of inherited wealth with the use of testamentary trusts. 

9.  Not planning for taxes that may be due at your death.  Children may be forced to sell important family assets at reduced prices if you do not have a proper plan in place.

10.  Procrastination.  The government will love you for this.

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

She Gave All She Had To Live On

By: Barry G. Allen- President & CEO

        Remember that incident recorded in Luke 21:1-4 and Mark 12:41-44 when Jesus observed the poor widow putting her copper coins into the temple treasury? What a comparison Jesus made that day to the others who were putting their money into the treasury as well! Mark’s version reported “Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, ‘I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all of the others. They gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything – all she had to live on.’”

        In terms of the coins she used this woman made the smallest gift, but to Jesus she made the most significant gift to God’s work. What are the truths Jesus would have us learn from this experience? First, no one is excluded from the privilege of making a worthy gift to our Lord. Second, the gift that counts is the gift that costs. Third, it’s not the amount but the proportion. Fourth, it’s not the size of the gift but the size of the sacrifice. Fifth, to God the depth of our giving is not dependent upon the depth of our pockets but upon the depth of our love and commitment to Him.

        Giving is a matter of the heart. The poor widow demonstrated a heart of faith and love. She deprived herself of necessities in order to give to the cause she loved, and she did it believing God would not overlook her needs. God has honored this poor widow’s legacy by her place in Holy Scripture. Have you given Him your heart? He is not asking us to give all we have to live on. But, if we want to be commended by Him, we must give Him our heart like she did.