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Gift Planning

Using the Ultimate Opportunity to Show Their Gratitude

Jon and Linda DuBoisLinda and Jon have decided to include Unity in their estate plan. Linda DuBois was down to her last $5 when she bravely put it in the offering bag at her first Unity church service. From that point forward, she says, her fortunes began to improve. She experienced blessing upon blessing—financial, personal, and spiritual.

Now she and her husband, Jon, are among the most generous donors within Unity, contributing in far greater amounts, supporting major capital projects, and even providing for Unity to receive a portion of their estates when they transition to the next phase of eternal life.

"It has all been a wondrous, God-filled journey," says Linda.

She remembers well the "dark valley" she was experiencing when she was between jobs, running out of money, and searching for answers. "I was broke, desolate, devastated, and brokenhearted," she says. Then one day, "I was ruffling through the telephone directory at the marina office, where I was living on a small sailboat. The pages fell open to ‘churches,' and Unity of Daytona Beach caught my eye."

She called the prayer line and heard the Daily Word® message, which "spoke directly to me," she says. The next Sunday, "I rode my bike to the church service and was immediately amazed to find myself amidst a group of happy, singing people, laughing and smiling! Gosh, that's not what people do in ‘church!'" she laughs.

She sat in the back, and when tears began to roll down her cheeks for seemingly no reason, she felt she had "come home."

Linda said the most life-changing lesson she's learned from Unity is how we create our life experience through our thoughts.

"If I could rent an airplane and pull a banner around behind it, it would say, ‘Your words have power!' Diseases, negativity, toxins, repressed emotions, all trace back to our thoughts. ‘As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he,'" she says.

To reshape her thinking, she made gratitude a daily practice. "I learned to be happy and grateful for what I've got, and to make even more from it," says Linda. She found a good job, a new spiritual community, and eventually, her beloved husband, Jon. They were married 12 years ago aboard his 62-foot yacht, officiated by a Unity minister with Unity church members singing.

"I think the good Lord must have thought, ‘Now that you know how to handle your life, I can send you greater prosperity,'" says Linda. She and Jon are financially prosperous, but even more importantly, they are happy, fulfilled, and loving life. They travel with their pets in a 32-foot RV, exploring parks, nature, and enjoying the adventure of life.

For Jon and Linda, who were raised in more traditional Christian denominations, Unity has been a marvel. "Jon doesn't like church, religion, and all the negativity," says Linda. "But once you turn that upside down and realize God is love and God is good, it loses its charge of being fear-based. You are loved, and you feel grateful."

Jon likes Linda to read to him from Unity Magazine®, Daily Word, and Unity books. "Unity is a beacon to direct our ship during the good and the not-so-good times, and to help us receive the lessons we are here to learn—to grow spiritually—and we are truly grateful," says Jon.

What they want most is for Unity to continue doing its good work in the world, so others are served and uplifted. Says Linda: "By donating to Unity through our wills, we have the ultimate opportunity to show our gratitude to God for this wonderful life experience!"

Contact Unity Development Department at 816-251-3505 or to learn of ways to support Unity.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Unity School of Christianity 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

The official legal bequest language for Unity School of Christianity is: "I, [name], of [city, state, ZIP], give, devise and bequeath to Unity School Of Christianity, 1901 NW Blue Parkway, Unity Village, MO 64065, Federal Tax ID#: 44-0546000, [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 Unity 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 Unity 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 Unity 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 Unity where you agree to make a gift to Unity 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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