Endowment Fund

"Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you." (Matthew 6:4 NLT)

Southwood established an Endowment Fund in January 2004. The purpose of the fund is to enhance the mission of Southwood Lutheran Church apart from the general operation of the congregation. No portion of the income generated by the fund is used for the annual operating budget of the congregation.

Income from the Endowment Fund is used in 4 areas:

  • Outreach into the community and Nebraska Synod
  • Missions of the ELCA in this continent and worldwide
  • New ministry opportunities within Southwood Lutheran Church
  • Causes and programs which, at the discretion of the trustees, are consistent with the fund purpose of enhancing the mission outreach of Southwood Lutheran Church.

Southwood members can apply for funds from the Endowment for projects that meet the above qualifications. For more info, contact Lori Changstrom.

Ways to Give to the Endowment Fund:

For more information, contact Lori Changstrom or Lutheran Planned Giving Services, at 888-891-5728 or .

Some assets may have grown in value during the time you owned them. If you sell these assets, you will likely have a capital gains tax to pay. If you gift these assets to our congregation, we can typically sell them with no tax consequence, allowing a larger portion of your asset to go to support our mission and ministry.

If you have owned stock longer than one year, own a home or apartment building, own equipment that you have depreciated or have any valuable collectibles, you can gift ownership of these assets (or a portion of these assets if you do not desire to gift the entire value). You will be eligible for a tax deduction and will typically bypass the capital gains tax due if you had sold the asset yourself.

Some partners choose to gift a percentage of their estate (tithe) as they have done throughout their lives. You can do this through a provision in your will leaving a specific percentage of your estate to Southwood Lutheran Church.

Sample language to include in your will is:
To Southwood Lutheran Church, 4301 Wilderness Hills Blvd., Lincoln, Nebraska 68516.
I leave XX% of the remainder of my estate.

You can also gift a percentage through your retirement account, life insurance policy or other beneficiary designation. These changes can typically be made through a beneficiary designation form from your insurance agent or the company that manages your retirement account. On the Primary or Secondary Beneficiary line you will name Southwood Lutheran Church to receive XX% and your spouse, children or others you want to receive the remainder, if any.

We appreciate the support you and others provide to help us proclaim the Risen Christ! If you would like to continue your support of our congregation beyond your lifetime, there are multiple ways you can do so.

Lutheran Planned Giving Services (LPGS) provides free confidential consultation for members of our congregation who wish to include ministry as a part of their estate plan. Some of the links below will lead you to LPGS for help with these gifts. To learn more about LPGS and our NE Synod Serving Arm Ministries, follow these links:

A simple way to support ministry is to include a specific gift in your will. You could include our congregation in your list of beneficiaries and name a specific amount you would like to have us receive at the time of your death. Just visit with your attorney to have this gift included in your will.

Sample language to include in your will is:
To Southwood Lutheran Church,4301 Wilderness Hills Blvd., Lincoln, Nebraska 68516

Some partners choose to adopt ministry as a child in their estate plan. You simply add one to the number of children you have and divide the estate accordingly. For example, if you have 3 children, you add 1 to create a new total of 4. You divide your estate by 4 and leave 25% to each of your children and 25% to ministry. To carry this out, use the same methods outlined in percentage giving above.

Some charitable gifts offer you a current tax deduction as well as income for the remainder of your life. Charitable Gift Annuities and Charitable Trusts are two such gift vehicles. If you are able to give an asset during your lifetime, and would like to receive an income from the value of that asset, a life income gift could be right for you.

A Charitable Gift Annuity is a contract that provides you a fixed payment in return for a current gift. With a minimum gift of $10,000 your payment is based on your age, and whether the annuity will terminate at the time of your death or if it will pay out for both you and your spouse. You receive a current tax deduction for a portion of the gift and a portion of the return comes to you tax-free.

Learn more about a Charitable Gift Annuity.

A Charitable Trust provides you a return based on the value of the trust. With a minimum gift of $100,000 a Charitable Trust is a great vehicle to bypass capital gains taxes on appreciated property. A Charitable Trust provides an income stream for the rest of your life and, if you desire, for a period of years beyond your life for your heirs. Since a Charitable Trust can pay out to you and/or your spouse for your lifetime, to your children for a period of up to 20 years and then pass to charity, it can often double or even triple the value of your asset. A Charitable Trust also provides a current tax deduction for a portion of the gift.

A Testamentary Charitable Trust is an agreement prepared and written during life and fully funded at death. The donor states in their will what portion ($100,000 or more) of their assets are to "pour over" into the trust that would provide income to beneficiaries for life or for one to twenty years.

Since wills are subject to change, the testator may alter his/her agreement if the need arises, making this a revocable arrangement. This is excellent for those who want to maintain full ownership during their lifetime, or until a later date, and desire to make a meaningful distribution, both to family beneficiaries and the Lutheran Charities of their choosing.

Learn more about Testamentary Chariable Trusts.

The ELCA Foundation manages two types of testamentary trusts: The Testamentary Unitrust and the Testamentary Annuity Trust.