It is that time of year again—time to give the minimum. Not only should you not feel guilty about it—I am actually encouraging it.

Of course, what I am talking about is your retirement account’s Required Minimum Distribution (RMD). Many of us with retirement accounts, once we hit our 70s, are required to receive a minimum amount from our retirement plan (401k, 403b, or IRAs). No doubt there are many in your congregation who receive this disbursement every year.

One of the excellent ways to give money is to roll all, or a portion of, our RMD directly from our retirement account to our church.  In this way we can give money we might already have planned to give, only the amount may be non-taxable. Perhaps we want to give a little extra in this time of Covid-19. What a blessing to give a gift but not have to claim it as “income” for tax purposes.

The key to this kind of gift is that the giver never receives the money directly. If we receive the distribution, then write a check to the church, we will pay taxes on the RMD. Only by rolling it over directly to the charity (church) do we escape tax consequences.

As we approach another challenging year, it may be that folks in your congregation will be considering what to do with their RMD. Be sure to let folks know, in the bulletin, newsletter, or in other announcements, that they have this option of giving to their church.

If you are not set up to handle this kind of transaction give us a call at your United Methodist Foundation of Indiana. We will process the rollover, send your church the money, and your giver will receive the tax benefits. As always, we would be glad to answer any questions you may have.

So, go ahead. Do not feel bad. Even God smiles when you give this minimum.

Glenn HowellFor support with your church’s stewardship and giving development, contact your United Methodist Foundation here or 877-391-8811.

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Glenn Howell
Director of Development
United Methodist Foundation of Indiana