We are remembered for what we give, not for what we hold onto. I was powerfully reminded of this during a memorial service for someone who died. During the service and following, I heard story after story of how the deceased had given generously to this organization and another. Each church and non-profit receiving gifts were stronger today because giving characterized this person’s life. Their life was being celebrated by what they gave, not for what they held onto.
Recently, the church sold a small condominium left to the church by a member, Susanne Emery. During one of my pastoral visits with Susanne, about a year before she died, she shared how much the ministry of this church had blessed her life. She informed me that she wanted to multiply that blessing to others in perpetuity. That is when she told me she had planned with an attorney to leave her home to the church. After her death, her home was sold, the remaining mortgage was paid, and the church received over $45,000. Our church has a stronger financial position for the future because of Susanne! Her generosity will be remembered and celebrated for many generations.
I invite you to consider how you will be remembered. Your membership and annual support of our church have resulted in a stronger ministry. Our impact in the community is greater because of you. Yet, once you have died, your part in that impact stops unless you make plans to make a Legacy Gift. Even small gifts such as $500 or $1,000 are important. As someone once said, raindrops can fill a bucket.
Naturally, not one of us is guaranteed tomorrow. I invite you to make plans with an attorney to make a Legacy Gift to First Presbyterian Church of Delray Beach. Or, you may contact the Presbyterian Foundation (800-858-6127) and speak with a Ministry Relations Officer. In any amount, a gift will be invested with others in our Remembrance Fund to create an annual gift to the church. That way, year after year, just like Susanne Emery, you will be supporting life-changing ministry through our congregation as a Legacy Partner. Indeed, we are remembered for what we give, not for what we hold onto.
With gratitude for you,
Dr. W. Douglas Hood, Jr.