From the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation - Leave a Legacy, March 2018

We recently shared with Stewardship leaders, this service of the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation. Now we share it with you.

By preparing a will, you can extend your Christian stewardship beyond your lifetime. In addition to providing for your family’s needs, your will can direct how your assets will continue to support the missions and ministries you have supported in life.

A simple, cost-effective way to do it is to insert this text in your wills: "After all my bills are paid, I want [x] percent of my estate to go to the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation, Inc., to be used for such exempt purposes of the Foundation as are provided in a specific written instrument.”

Then you provide the Foundation with a letter of instruction that says, “In accordance with the will I have prepared, I have designated that [x] percent of my estate will be given to charity. The Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation, Inc. has been designated to receive this bequest. I request the Foundation to distribute this bequest as follows:”

You may then specify percentages to be given to a specific United Methodist church, Wisconsin UM health or welfare ministry, UM college or seminary, specific missionary or local community outreach organization. In fact any religious or not-for-profit organization.

You may want to spend some time praying and thinking about the kinds of ministries that you have a calling to support. UM Global Ministries has a browsable, searchable list of mission projects by category, region, focus area, population served, etc. My wife, Pastor Barbara Wells, and I recently added this provision to our will to remember the causes we support.

If you need assistance with preparing your letter of instruction or wish to know more about leaving a gift to your favorite church or charitable organization, contact the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation tollfree at 1-888-903-9863 or email us at

Jim Wells, Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation

Sue Koch