Leaving a gift if your Will is an amazing opportunity to make a final gift to God. This will make a lasting difference to the future of St Andrew’s church, and its ministry and mission in our local community.
No matter how big or small, every gift in every Will can make a significant impact. Gifts in Wills are an important part of Christian giving, and leaving a gift to your church is a way to thank God for all the blessings you have received in your lifetime.
Legacy gifts can be used to fund mission and ministry projects, help to maintain church buildings, and ensure faithful people can be at the heart of this community for years to come. Parishes in the Church of England benefit from over 5,000 people each year who have decided to leave a gift in their Wills. This means over £50 million in legacy gifts is left to the church each year.
At St Andrew’s we welcome all legacy gifts, and we promise to use them to make a difference.
Use of your legacy
The Parochial Church Council’s (PCC) may wish to use legacy gifts to fund development projects inside our church buildings and wider parish. This could be building maintenance and improvements, purchasing new equipment, or investing in people.
It is a great help if legacy gifts are left for general purposes, and not for a specific appeal or project which may have ended by the time you have died. The PCC can discuss with the executors of your Will how your gifts can be utilised at that time. This can be a wonderful experience, as both parties can discuss areas of the church’s work that interested you. For example, this could be music, buildings and facilities, or children’s work.
How to leave a legacy gift
- Write your Will for free online
Will writing can often seem like a time consuming and expensive thing to do – and that’s a big reason why many people put it off. The Church of England has partnered with award-winning online Will-writing company Farewill to offer a free online Will writing service (RRP £90). You can complete from the comfort of your home in less than 30 minutes.
This was piloted for the first time in 2021 in Manchester and Winchester dioceses to help the church to understand whether a national Will-writing scheme would be a useful resource in the future.
Making a Will and keeping it updated is the only way to make sure your wishes are carried out after your death, giving you peace of mind that you can continue to support the family, friends, and charities you love.
If you live in England or Wales, you can redeem your free online Will by clicking the link below:
Disclaimer: by participating in this Will writing scheme, your details will not be shared with the Church of England. If you use the Church of England Will writing scheme, there is no obligation to leave a gift to a church in your Will. Your loved ones should always come first. If you do choose to remember your local or a favourite church, thank you. Every gift, great or small will make a real difference to that church and its mission and ministry in your community for future generations.
- Need to write a Will?
We strongly advise you to seek professional advice and to see a solicitor when making or revising your Will. If you need help finding a local Solicitor, please click here.
You may wish to write a Letter of Wishes to sit alongside your Will. Click here to download the Church of England's Letter of Wishes template.
A standard Will costs around £199 + VAT, and the Solicitor should outline the cost upfront before you visit them. You may find the Church of England’s 'Preparing to visit your Solicitor document helpful.
- Made a Will already?
It is a simple process to make an amendment to an existing Will to leave a legacy to our church. This is done via a Codicil (an amendment document) to your existing Will at no cost. A template Codicil can be downloaded here. If your Will is more complicated, please make sure you consult a solicitor to ensure your wishes are recorded accurately.
If you wish to speak to a representative from St Andrew’s Church in greater detail about this in confidence, please contact Reverend Jo McKee.
No matter how far away it may be, thinking about your own funeral service now and making your wishes known can be a comfort to you and your family in all sorts of ways. If you’re thinking about sorting out your own funeral service plan, Your Church Funeral Planning Tool offers guidance on how to do that, and how it can really help your family when the time comes.
The Your Funeral Wishes Planner is a downloadable leaflet which enables you to record their wishes. It is split into two sections: what will happen on the day, and what might happen later at a time when family and friends can gather. The leaflet provides spaces to make some notes and begin to think about your ideas, including the sort of music and readings you might like, and the venue where you’d like it to take place. You could then use it to share with those around you.
Wherever it happens, a Church of England funeral can be designed to reflect your story, making it personal, unique and meaningful. There are lots of choices that can be made, but remember they are not set in stone. You can revise your ideas as often as you wish.
Remember, your funeral wishes are needed before your Will is read, so please don’t keep them with your Will. Instead keep them somewhere safe, and don’t forget to let your close family and friends know where to find them. More information is available at the Church of England Funerals Hub.