What is Planned Giving ?

A planned gift to the seminary is an expression of your values and commitment to the mission and vision of Chicago Theological Seminary (CTS). It is a way of saying that after your family and loved ones, CTS matters, and giving to the seminary is important to you. By arranging a planned gift to CTS, you will join the Victor and Jessie Lawson Society, a group of others who have also committed to the future of CTS through planned giving. A gift from your estate sustains our mission of preparing the next generation of religious leadership.

Planned gifts are arranged during the donor's lifetime but not realized by the beneficiary until the donor's death. There are gifts that pay you income during your life or help to reduce or avoid income and estate taxes. How you make your gift is important, but more important is the impact your planned gift will have on the causes that matter to you most.

This site is designed to make it easy for you to get the information you need when considering a planned gift. You will also find information to share with your financial advisor and/or estate planner. When you are ready, you can use this site to reach out to us to share your plans, let us know what you are considering, or just to start a confidential conversation about what's possible.

Why Give?

A planned gift to the seminary is an expression of your values and commitment to the mission and vision of CTS. It is a way of saying the future of CTS matters. The Victor and Jessie Lawson Society is a group of others who have also committed to the future of CTS through planned giving. A gift from your estate and theirs sustains our mission of preparing the next generation of religious leadership.

What Matters Most

Your well-considered planned gift can make an impact on a specific area of need. Consider directing your planned gift to these core missions and ministries or directing your planned gift as an unrestricted gift to CTS.

  • For more than 160 years, CTS has been committed to transforming the world towards greater justice and mercy by equipping religious leaders. Your gift assures the continuation of your particular passions and interests for social transformation and religious leadership, and will continue the bold legacy of CTS.

  • As the costs of theological education rise, students are forced to accrue even greater loans to cover tuition costs. Donors like you, enable CTS to offer substantial student scholarships, helping to ease the burden imposed by student debt while also making seminary more accessible for all.

  • Designating your gift to a specific initiative at CTS support students through courses, lectures, and other opportunities. Your gift can support specific programs (perhaps Rooks or Castañeda), or larger initiatives such as the InterReligious Institute. Let's explore the programs that fit your passions and interests.

  • Your gift can support the on-going scholarship of the world-class faculty at CTS. In examining your academic and ministerial interests, you can support faculty, faculty research, and coursework at CTS. Students will continue to receive a rigorous academic foundation, preparing them for a future of religious leadership.

  • The CTS endowment is professionally managed and invested in socially responsible funds. It allows us to put the gifts from our supporters—past and present—to work in perpetuity. The income generated by your gift to the endowment provides a legacy of your commitment to preparing Leaders for the Next for generations to come.

How to Give

As a donor, you have total discretion over your planned gift. You have options for how your planned gift will be used, what to give and how to give. There are planned gifts you can provide for in a Will or trust and planned gifts that provide income to you and/or a beneficiary for their lifetime.

Gifts from your Will

Through a provision in your written and executed will or living trust, you can make a planned gift (or an outright gift as well) to CTS in the form of cash, securities, real estate or personal property. There are many types of bequests. Consult with your attorney to choose the one that best fits your needs and intentions.

Download Bequest Language

Gifts that Pay You
Charitable Gift Annuities 

You can turn underperforming or non-income producing assets (cash, stock, CDs, savings bonds, etc.) into a gift to CTS that provides income to you or you and a loved one. (One example of several available options is a Gift Annuity.) Your UCF Charitable Gift Annuity will return fixed, quarterly payments for life and provide tax benefits, too.

See How It Would Work for You

Beneficiary Gifts
Retirement Accounts and other Funds 

Naming CTS as the beneficiary or one of the beneficiaries of a qualified retirement plan asset such as an IRA, 401(k), or 403(b) will accomplish a charitable goal while realizing a significant tax savings.

Download Beneficiary Form

Gifts of Appreciated Assets
Buy Low. Give High. 

When you donate appreciated stocks, bonds, or mutual fund shares instead of cash, the benefit the church receives exceeds the cost of the original securities purchased. You'll receive a charitable deduction for the full amount of your gift and avoid the impact of the capital gains taxes on the appreciated securities.

Download Stock Transfer Info

Outright Gifts of Personal Property
Real Estate and Other Valuables 

Personal property, such as antiques, collectibles, musical instruments, works of art or vehicles, can be donated to us today or even after your lifetime through your estate. If the property is related to our mission, it's usually fully tax deductible based on its fair market value. In some cases, your gift of personal property can be used to fund a life income gift, such as a charitable gift annuity or charitable remainder trust.

Contact Us for Details

Gifts of Life Insurance

Name CTS as the beneficiary of an existing life insurance policy; donate an existing, paid-up life insurance policy you no longer need; or purchase a new life insurance policy and name CTS as the owner and beneficiary.

Contact Us for Details

Let's Talk

Planning your estate and legacy for future generations including your charitable interests takes careful evaluation.

Discussing your charitable intentions with us can lead to a much better result than going it alone – and will ensure that your gift is used just as you wish. Act now to be a good steward of the resources you intend to leave behind. Contact us using the contact info below, or submit this form to get more information.

For Professional Advisors

If you are working with a professional advisor or if you are advising a donor, here's a handy guide for including CTS in a charitable estate plan.

Download Advisor Guide

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