Has your PCC got a legacy policy?

Author: Eleanor Stead

Published on: 25 June 2017

Legacies are a lifeline for many of our parishes.

In 2014, over £52 million contributed to parish income, financing mission projects, helping to maintain beautiful
church buildings and grow faithful communities. For many people, leaving a gift in their will is a final opportunity to make a lasting gift to God. It is also a way to make a lasting difference to the future of their church and community.
Many church members would like to know how they could leave a gift in their will, although they might be reticent about asking. The Church of England is seeking to help PCCs take practical steps to encourage this area of giving.

Four Simple Steps

We’ve produced four Simple Steps your PCC can take to encourage legacy giving.

Step 1: Request a free PCC Legacy Toolkit

The Toolkit provides all the information, guidance and resources you need to launch a successful legacy campaign.

Step 2: Make and Communicate a Legacy Policy

A Legacy Policy is an important document that all parishes should have. It allows the PCC to prepare and discuss how they would wish to see a gift used.

Step 3: Make Legacy Literature Available

It is important to make quality literature available for those who wish to find out more. We recommend making free information available so individuals can take it away and prayerfully reflect.

Step 4: Share your Story

We encourage parishes to talk about the power of gifts in wills. A simple service can highlight the difference gifts have made in the past, and how they can make a difference to your church’s future.

Legacy Policies

Most people will only leave a gift in their will if they think their church will use it for projects which will make a real difference to the future of the church and community. A legacy policy allows the PCC to prepare and discuss how they would wish to see a gift used. It can also help to reassure those interested that the PCC has a policy in place.

PCCs should agree a policy on how potential legacy income will be spent, and then communicate it to the congregation. It is also advisable to discourage restricted gifts since the needs of a church will change over time.

We have a very simple template PCCs can use, which is available in word at www.parishresources.org.uk/legacies/developing-a-legacypolicy/

The author...

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Eleanor Stead

Legacy and Funding Officer, National Stewardship Team

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