Planned Giving

A planned gift is one that typically offers tax advantages to the donor and offers future support to the Sisters of St. Benedict. It gives our friends the satisfaction of knowing that the love they have for our Sisters and the people they serve will continue on even after God calls them home.

Many times planned gifts are funded with the assets someone owns rather than from income they receive. Assets are things like shares of stock or a piece of real estate.

Sometimes planned gifts are thought of as deferred gifts, meaning that the benefit to our Sisters is deferred to a future time.

One of the benefits of making a planned gift is that our members are enrolled in our St. Hildegard Society, with its many spiritual benefits. Our society members find comfort in knowing that our sisters will perpetually remember them and their intentions in their daily prayers and Masses.

Reminder: The Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand, Indiana, is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, EIN 35-0953517. Your gift is tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Types of Planned Gifts

Charitable Gift Annuity 

A charitable gift annuity is a terrific way to help provide for your well-being while also supporting our religious community.

Here’s how a gift annuity works:

If you are at least 60 years of age (or 50 years old for a deferred gift annuity), you make an irrevocable gift of $5,000 or more to the Sisters of St. Benedict.

In return:

  • You receive income for life, a portion of which is tax-free.
  • You receive a charitable deduction for a portion of your gift.

It’s that simple. Perhaps the best news is that your kindness will also assist us in our ministries and in serving our retired sisters.

The rate of payments we make to you is based on your age — refer to our payout rates chart. Payments can be scheduled immediately or deferred until the future. One of the benefits of a deferred gift annuity is that our donors receive a higher payout rate in exchange for waiting for payments to begin. This is an attractive option if you’re planning for your retirement.

A gift annuity can be created for one or two people (called beneficiaries). Beneficiaries do not need to be related. With a two-life gift annuity, after the death of one beneficiary, the second beneficiary continues to receive the same income for as long as he or she lives. One can even create a gift annuity to benefit someone else, such as a parent or other loved one.

Remember, your gift is irrevocable. Although you will no longer have access to it, you benefit by receiving a steady stream of income at a fixed rate for as long as you live.

To learn more, or to request a no-obligation proposal, contact our Mission Advancement Office at 888-649-1121, ext. 2631, or We can also supply you with rates for two-life or deferred gift annuities.

Single Life Gift Annuity Rates*


* Rates effective January 1, 2023


Let’s face it: people are living longer than ever before. And with advancing age comes stress about outliving resources. In the quiet moments, many wonder if unexpected expenses such as nursing care await them. Cash may not be available as it was in the past, especially with interest rates so low.

Of course, love for the Sisters of St. Benedict never diminishes. But expressing that love in these trying times can be a challenge. Difficult decisions must be made, such as planning for your future while still supporting the sisters who many consider their extended family.

The answer may lie in a simple decision: include the Sisters of St. Benedict in your will or trust. This decision doesn’t impact your available cash today, but still expresses support for the sisters and their ministries as they plan for the future.

There are many ways you can include the sisters in your estate plan. You can make a gift for a specific amount or a percentage of your estate, or even a residual gift after your specific bequests have been addressed.

If you’ve already written your will, it’s not too late. Consider adding a codicil to your will. A codicil is like a letter’s P.S. and doesn’t demand an extraordinary amount of legal time or expense.

If, after prayerful consideration, you decide to include the sisters in your estate plans, you should know that our legal title is Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand, Indiana, Inc. Of course, we always encourage you to consult a trusted attorney who can help with the details. In most cases, the consultation cost is minimal.

To help you get started, please contact our planned giving office by calling Sister Barbara Lynn Schmitz at 888-649-1121, ext. 2631, or e-mail her at You can also request a free copy of our “Personal Affairs Record” booklet to help you organize all your assets in one convenient location.


Gifts of securities — shares of stock or a mutual fund, bonds, etc. — are often overlooked in helping support our sisters. It’s unfortunate, because the advantages of making a gift in this way are substantial.

Suppose you purchased stock in XYZ Corporation many years ago. Its value has fluctuated over the years, but it’s now valued at three times what you paid for it.

If you were to donate those shares, you’d be allowed a charitable deduction for the full fair market value of that stock — not just what you paid for it. This provision in the tax code allows you to make a significant gift to the sisters at a nominal cost.

There are a couple rules to keep in mind. Your stock needs to have appreciated in value, and you need to have owned it for at least a year and a day. And you must transfer that stock directly into our brokerage account. If you sell it on your own, you will be subject to tax on the capital gain.

Keep in mind that if your stock has depreciated in value, it most likely makes more sense for you to sell the stock on your own. Doing so will allow you to claim a capital loss on your tax return. You can then take the proceeds of the sale and send the cash along.

Gifts of stock are valued by taking the average of the high and low for the stock on the day we receive it and multiplying that by the number of shares. Gifts of shares in a mutual fund are valued by using the closing price for that day.

The brokerage account for the Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand, Indiana, Inc. is held at Charles Schwab & Co, Inc. Please contact Lydia Bolton at 812-367-1411, ext. 2678 or to request our account details.

If you hold the stock certificate, please call our office for details on how to make a gift in this way.

Life Insurance

A gift of life insurance is one of the most flexible ways you can support the Sisters of St. Benedict.

Many of us own policies that were purchased years ago — sometimes as far back as childhood. Those policies might be sitting in a drawer somewhere, long forgotten. Or perhaps the need for them has long since passed.

There are a few ways you can use life insurance to make a gift. The simplest way is to request a change of beneficiary form from your life insurance company and make the Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand, Indiana, a full, partial, or contingent beneficiary.

A full beneficiary designation means that at the time of your death, the value of the policy will go directly to the sisters. A partial beneficiary designation means that we will share the proceeds with others. A contingent beneficiary designation means that we will receive the value if a certain set of conditions is met. (For example, the sisters would benefit only if a loved one predeceases you.)

In this way, a gift of life insurance allows you the flexibility to change your mind at any time, should circumstances — whatever they may be — dictate such a change.

Another way to make a gift of life insurance is to sign over a fully paid policy today. You would be allowed a tax deduction for such generosity.

Yet another way is to make the Sisters of St. Benedict the irrevocable owner and beneficiary of your policy. Future premium payments may be tax-deductible in this case. For details, please contact Sister Barbara Lynn Schmitz at 888-649-1121, ext. 2631, or

All in all, a gift of life insurance ensures that new life will be made possible to many — to the sisters and also to those whom we serve — and your life will be remembered with fondness and gratitude.

Real Estate

Home sweet home.

There’s nothing like it. Whether you’ve lived in your home for a few years or for a lifetime, your home really is your castle. It’s your sanctuary—a place where memories are treasured and stored.

The Sisters of St. Benedict understand the meaning of home. For every one of us, the monastery in Ferdinand, Indiana, is where we were welcomed into our family, and it’s also where we will leave this earth to join the Lord. Our home—our monastery—is where we, like you, find comfort at the end of the day.

Your home may be your single most valuable asset, especially if you’ve lived there for some time. It has most likely appreciated in value since it was purchased. That’s why it’s wise to consider how to handle the eventual ownership of your home as you plan your estate.

For some, the home will be passed down to children. For others, an executor will be responsible for selling the property. But there is another possibility.

Have you ever considered gifting your home through your will or trust to the Sisters of St. Benedict? We would handle the disposition of your home with loving care. Once sold, the cash received would be put to the best of uses—helping us care for our older sisters and supporting the ministries in which we’re involved. Your estate would be allowed a tax deduction in consideration of your gift.

Here’s one more idea: you can even make a gift of your home while you are still living in it. By creating a “life estate agreement,” we would eventually receive your home to benefit our community. But in the meantime you could still live in it, take care of its upkeep, pay taxes, etc., as you normally do. A tax deduction for a portion of the home’s value is allowed in this case as well.

To discuss this opportunity, please call Sister Barbara Lynn Schmitz at 888-649-1121, ext. 2631, or email her at

Savings Bonds

Did you know that Americans own approximately 32 million expired savings bonds, worth about $12.9 billion, that are sitting around in drawers or deposit boxes and not earning interest? The value of unclaimed, matured savings bonds is growing by about $1 billion a year.

Purchasing savings bonds has often been seen as patriotic. But the impact is substantial: the government makes about $1 million a day in interest from this unclaimed money.

But what can we do?

If savings bonds are redeemed, tax is owed on the appreciation. If they remain in a file drawer, they generate absolutely no income for the owner. Thankfully, there are a couple solutions to this challenging situation.

Donate your savings bonds to the Sisters of St. Benedict through your will. You must specifically mention the bequest to our sisters. You can’t just leave it up to your executor to make that decision. The gift would make an enormous difference in our community, and it would allow you to use other tax-wise assets to make gifts to loved ones.

Cash in your bonds and pay the tax, but don’t stop there. Use the cash you receive to create a charitable gift annuity with our sisters. You’ll be allowed a tax deduction to help offset the taxes you’ll owe from the redemption. AND you’ll begin receiving a steady stream of income from the gift annuity—turning a “dead” asset into income. Not a bad solution, wouldn’t you say?

To discuss these opportunities, please contact Angie Greulich at 812-367-1411, ext. 2632, or

Learn More About Planned Giving