Why We Give: George and Bettey Tomasi

Tomasi Family“We feel such great gratitude to the Lord for giving us so many blessings,” said George Tomasi, reflecting back on his 80 years. “Yes,” chimed in his wife, Bettey, “Maybe He realized we would need extra help with the nine children He gave us!”

That help came in the form of a “mom and pop” scuba diving business that the Tomasi’s operated for many years, which augmented George’s full time job at Northern Michigan University. It provided a means for them to teach their children important life skills like how to have a job, earn and manage their own money. The Church provided the belief and value systems by which they lived.

“The Church has been so supportive and a part of our lives,” said George. “You know, the Lord will always give you opportunities, but you have to have the courage to open the door. Somehow, we always had enough opportunities presented, and were blessed with the energy and health to use them.”

When George and Bettey turned 60, they began to think about their future differently. That’s when they made their will. “I wanted to make sure Bettey was taken care of,” said George. Their will provides shares for each of their children, including Julie, who remains in their hearts even though she is in the hands of the Lord.

“We’ve gone over our will with all of the children, we’ve divided duties among them for taking care of our estate after we’re gone, and they are all supportive of it,” said George.

Planning gifts to the Church can be a source of grace and deepening spirituality. Including the Church in your will perpetuates the Catholic faith and offers yet another opportunity to walk more closely with the Lord Jesus.

A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to the Catholic Diocese of Marquette a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to the Catholic Diocese of Marquette, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 1004 Harbor Hills Drive, Marquette, MI 49855, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to the Church or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the Church as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to the Church as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and the Church where you agree to make a gift to the Church and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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