November 30, 2023
Dear Parishioners and Friends of St. John’s,
Most of us are familiar with the Gospel passage when Jesus observes a poor widow putting two small coins into the temple treasury. He said: “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.” (Luke 21: 3-4)
With Advent upon us, we can ask ourselves, “Can I be more like the poor widow, and grow in awareness that I belong to God, and that everything I have is a gift from Him?”
This is a special time of year when you and I are invited to give thanksgiving to God for the many gifts He has given us. We can offer thanksgiving in many ways, especially through prayer, but also by saying “yes” to serving others, and through almsgiving. Almsgiving is traditionally a Lenten practice, but it is also appropriate during Advent.
Advent also coincides with the end of our calendar year, when many people review their charitable giving over the past year, and decide if they will make additional contributions before year’s end, sometimes to take advantage of tax benefits.
If you find that you are able to make a year-end gift to support the mission of our parish, contributions to the Restore to Gather campaign are especially helpful as we seek to reach our $5 million goal. Gifts designated for Sunday Giving, which support the daily operations of our parish, are also gratefully received, as a significant percentage of our yearly budget is typically contributed every year at this time.
Below, please find information that may be helpful to you for year-end giving. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at the parish office at 651-633-8333, ext. 1253, or by email at email@example.com.
Tax benefits of making a gift before the end of the year.
For those who itemize deductions on their annual tax return, gifts made by December 31 can be claimed as a charitable tax deduction on your 2023 income tax return. For a gift to count towards your 2023 income tax return, the parish must receive your donation or payment by December 31, or your mailed contribution must be postmarked by December 31, 2023.
Your year-end cash gift can be made in person to the parish office, via US mail, or online. To simply and securely make a gift online, select “Donate” at www.stjohnnb.com. Please note that you can make a one-time gift to a particular fund, such as Sunday Giving or the Restore to Gather Capital Campaign. You can also sign-up for recurring donations that make it easier for you to include St. John’s in your family budget.
IRA Charitable Distribution
This charitable giving tool allows donors to contribute directly from their IRA to St. John’s. Some provisions include:
Individuals must be age 70 ½ or older in order to make a Qualified Charitable Contribution (QCD) from their IRA.
If you are required to take a minimum distribution (RMD) from your IRA and don’t need all of the income, you can direct your IRA custodian to send funds directly to our parish as a tax-free donation to charity.
For QCDs and RMDs, simply request that funds be sent to St. John the Baptist at our parish address: St. John the Baptist, 835 2nd Ave NW, New Brighton, MN 55112.
The distribution does not give the donor a charitable tax deduction, but it does lower the donor’s adjusted gross income and may save in ordinary income taxes.
Gifts of Stock
A gift of appreciated stock helps you avoid paying tax on the gain in the stock’s value (capital gains). For tax purposes, you claim the full value of the stock when it is donated to St. John the Baptist. Please contact Mark Dittman or Mary May in the parish office as soon as possible if you wish for your stock gift to be considered a 2023 gift. The Parish Office will coordinate with your financial advisor or broker to ensure the gift is properly received.
As always, please seek the assistance of a knowledgeable advisor such as an attorney, financial planner or CPA, to determine how any particular strategy will affect your overall tax situation.
Thank you for your prayers and generous spirit to support our mission!