June 25, 2021

Investing with Faith / Jolinda Moore

CCF exists to provide long-term financial stability for the Church

Jolinda MooreIn an archdiocese with 70,000 households, we expect people to have varying degrees of knowledge regarding planned giving and the Catholic Community Foundation (CCF). While I have conversations with donors every day who are versed in this area, I encounter just as many who have never heard of CCF.

CCF was established more than 30 years ago to provide long-term financial stability for charitable, religious and educational organizations within the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. We were the first Catholic foundation in Indiana under the auspices of a Catholic diocese. We operated then and now with the constant focus of ensuring donor intent to provide for the long-term health of the Catholic Church in central and southern Indiana.

Working with the donor’s specific desires and financial needs, CCF offers a wide array of giving vehicle options including endowments, charitable gift annuities, life insurance policies and donor-advised funds. We strive to align the philanthropic desires of a donor with the short- and long-term needs of the Church. When this occurs, we encounter extremely grateful donors who have given with a heart of stewardship and extremely grateful ministries committed to spreading the good news of Jesus Christ.

Many donors choose gifts to an endowment fund because their gift will last in perpetuity. These include agency endowment funds created by our parishes, schools and other Catholic organizations, as well as designated funds created by individuals for a specific Catholic organization or cause. The minimum investment to establish an endowment fund is $5,000, or any amount can be added to an existing fund.

Endowment funds offer meaningful ways to memorialize or honor a donor’s family member or loved one. Current CCF endowment funds support seminarian education, Catholic Charities, Catholic education, and home missions which make up just a few of the 531 endowments CCF holds.

A board of professional lay men and women advise on growing the funds and increasing CCF visibility within the Catholic community. They advise on the overall, long-term investment goal of CCF, which is to achieve an annualized total return, through appreciation and income, greater than the rate of inflation plus any spending, thus protecting the assets against inflation.

Most compelling for me is the adherence to Catholic values. Adhering to an investment policy, we follow the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ guidelines for maximizing return on investments consistent with Catholic values and sound investment practices. We also work with an organization who constantly monitors our investments to be sure they are in alignment with ethical practices. In keeping with the moral position of the Roman Catholic Church, we refuse ownership of funds that would devalue or violate human life at any stage from conception until natural death.

We also offer planned giving expertise to donors and parishes, schools and agencies throughout the archdiocese. Planned gifts which fund an endowment can be structured as bequests, beneficiary designations from a retirement plan or life insurance policy, life estate, charitable gift annuities, charitable remainder or charitable lead trusts.

Our staff members consider it a privilege to work with donors to help them realize their giving goals and to make impactful gifts. If you want additional information about a planned gift or investing through CCF, our staff members are happy to assist you. Contact ccf@archindy.org, and we will set up a meeting at your convenience.

(Jolinda Moore is executive director of the archdiocesan Secretariat for Stewardship and Development. Tax or legal information provided herein is not intended as tax or legal advice. Always consult with your legal, tax or financial advisors before implementing any gift plan.)

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