I recently attended the ELCA Region 3 Annual Hunger Retreat and learned that one congregation in our region contributed an average of $125 per baptized member to the ELCA World Hunger program last year. Yes, you read that right--$125 per baptized member! We all, as you might imagine, gasped loudly (the goal is a mere $3 per baptized member). And we wondered how that could be possible in our own congregations.
Later we heard the explanation that much of this congregation’s giving came from one woman’s gift of her family farm to the synod for the ELCA World Hunger program. That’s a mighty unusual legacy to leave for children and grandchildren. But it is certainly one that tells family and friends about this woman’s faith, her generosity, and what she valued both during her life and in her death.
Most of us don’t own farmland anymore, but many of us have monies that will become part of our estates when we die. Perhaps now is a good time to think about how you might support the ELCA World Hunger program or another local community hunger program through your estate. The ELCA Foundation can help you make some plans. Contact the ELCA’s Regional Gift Planner for the Minneapolis-Saint Paul Area, Brenda Moore, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You, too, could make plans to “give the farm.”