By Mary Quilici Aumack
The strongest emotion that accompanies faith is that of gratitude. We are grateful for the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. We are grateful for our personal relationship with God, and the joy with which that fills our lives. We want to share this joy and gratitude with others, reaching out to help our neighbors.
In the season of Advent, this desire to BE the body of Christ in our community informs our plans for end-of-year charitable giving. I encourage you to do that planning in the context of the ministries that form you, and those that represent you in our community.
Central to our faith journey is our worship community, our parish. We all support our parishes on a regular basis. Here are some things to consider before year end:
- Ask your pastor if there is a need that you can fill as your “Christmas present” to the parish. It could be for him, or for a project he feels is important.
- Make a memorial gift to your parish, honoring someone dear to you.
- Start an endowment for your parish. This is a beautiful, lasting way to help ensure financial strength for generations to come.
- If your parish already has an endowment, make a Christmas gift to that fund.
NOTE: This year we have a $1M match program for parish endowments. We will match every parish up to $20,000.
Remember a religious order that influenced you growing up. The sisters have many ongoing projects, all of which are worthy and could use ongoing support. If you don’t know where to get good information, let us know and we can help.
Learn more about the programs at Catholic Charities. Visit their website: Catholiccharitiesscc.org. This is OUR charity, ministering on behalf of all of us. They have programs for youth, families, newly arrived, seniors, etc. Something is sure to inspire you.
Support a seminarian. This can be in the form of monetary support, or perhaps just a thoughtful Christmas gift. If you need specific ideas, contact Fr. Joe Kim at the diocese.
Consider a Christmas contribution to a Catholic school, perhaps the high school you attended, or the parish school that nurtured your children or grandchildren. This can be in the form of a current contribution, or the establishment of an endowment.
Make a gift to our tuition assistance endowment.
Look into the social programs of Santa Clara University. The students and faculty collaborate in many ways to walk with their neighbors and be a strong partner in social justice.
Here’s how the Foundation can partner with you as you consider these opportunities to enhance Catholic ministry in the season of Advent:
- We can establish an endowment for the Catholic ministry of your choice for as little as $1,000. We handle all of the administration.
- To streamline all of your giving, and to get an immediate tax deduction but gift the funds at a later time, consider opening a
- Donor Advised Fund with us. This is a great tool for your philanthropy and will allow us to continue to educate you on the myriad effective programs being managed by the parishes and other groups.
- We can easily help with a stock donation or a direct distribution from your IRA.
If you would like assistance in any of these areas, please give us a call at (408) 995-5219 or visit our website at www.cfoscc.org.
We were given the ultimate gift in the life, death and body & blood of Jesus. What a privilege to be able to recognize that as we plan our Christmas giving!