For me, I hope I see everyday as a day of thanksgiving. However, I must say I do love turkey and dressing, sweet potato pie and time with family every November. As I prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this year with family, there are messages all around me that say prepare for Christmas. Don’t delay! Shop now! Mail now! We are told we need to be shopping early and mailing early if we want our gifts to arrive in time for Christmas. So now is a great time to decide on your “make a difference gifts.” You know, the gift that changes lives, the gift that offers hope in the midst of what seems a hopeless time, the gift you give to Baptist Children’s Homes.
Ms. Lou, one of our dear houseparents, recently made her journey to heaven. As I sat down to write my column this month, my mind immediately remembered a story she shared with me. It was and is a story that to this day cuts to my core and dramatically reminds me of why we are here.
It was Christmas day. There were a few boys in the cottage, not many, because several had gone to visit grandparents or other extended family members. Ms. Lou prepared for weeks to serve a Christmas feast. She invited one of the boys that would be with them that day to call his mother and invite her to join them. The child was so excited knowing he would be with his mom on Christmas.
She was scheduled to arrive just before lunch. Lunch time came and passed. When he was finally able to reach her, he realized her addiction to alcohol had once again taken his mom to a very bad place. He was devastated. His heart was broken.
In that moment, hope was given. The peace, hope, and joy made manifest in the birth of a baby became real through Ms. Lou and the other boys in his cottage as they immediately began to care for him. They shared their Christmas feast and opened presents you
made possible. In that moment, your “make a difference gift” had a life-changing impact. Over the next several months, he found hope
and healing through a relationship with our Lord and Savior. Your “make a difference” gifts offer so many possibilities that point our children toward transformation.
Giving now is crucial to our being here throughout the coming year. There are many ways to give and impact the lives of hurting
children—and your gifts through the end of January will be doubled. Starting now, gifts are matched dollar for dollar up to $250,000.
Give a gift of $50 to be a Christmas sponsor for a child. A gift of $600 sponsors a cottage.
What better gift to give a friend or business associate than to honor them with a gift that blesses a child. BCH notifies honorees with a card and sends a gift acknowledgement receipt to you.
Consider a gift of cash or a gift of appreciated stock or other property. When you give stock or property, we sell it. By donating the stock or property directly to BCH, you eliminate the capital gains tax you would pay if you sold it. If you have held the stock for more than a year, your gift will be deductible at its full market value on the date it is received.
Be sure to call our office if you plan to make a stock gift. Often the broker will not inform us of the donor who is making the gift. For
questions about stock gifts or to expedite your stock gift, call Sam Barefoot at 336-474-1224.
An IRA Charitable Rollover gift is a great way for you to change the life of a child. Be sure you contact your advisor soon to make this happen before the end of the year.
The Cares Act created several incentives for individual giving in 2020, which carried over into 2021. These include :
• A new deduction for charitable donors who do not itemize when filing their tax returns. If you do not itemize but make a gift to charity, you will be able to take a special tax deduction, up to $300 to reduce your tax liability. If filing single you can claim a $300 deduction. If filing married/jointly you can claim a $600 deduction.
An example of this above the line deduction is a taxpayer who takes the standard deduction and makes a $300 cash gift to a public charity (BCH) may claim the $300 deduction in computing their AGI. The gift deduction is in addition to their standard deduction.
• The Cares Act lifted the cap on annual contributions to public charities (BCH for individuals who itemize. The provision in the
Cares Act provided an increase in the deduction limit up to 100% of a donor’s AGI for cash gifts to qualified charities (BCH). Prior to the
Cares act the deduction was capped at 60%. Any excess contributions available can be carried over to the next five years. Note: For corporations, the new law raised the annual limit from 10% to 25% of taxable income.
This information is not intended as legal advice. Consult with your accountant, tax advisor or attorney to determine the best strategy for your particular situation.
Thank you in advance for your investment in the life of a child. There are those who wish they could give at this time, but can’t. Will you pray about giving a little extra on their behalf. And remember, your gift will be matched dollar for dollar up to $250,000 until January 31st 2022. For more information, call me at 336-689-4442 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
To make a gift today, click here.
Written by Brenda Gray, Executive Vice President, Development & Communications