Choose an option below for answers to some of our frequently asked questions:

If we create a fund for our congregation with Charitus, who owns the assets?

We offer two types of fund: managed funds and endowment funds. Under the written agreement for a managed fund, the type chosen by most churches, the congregation remains the owner of the assets.

Do you offer a guaranteed rate of return?

Charitus funds are invested in securities whose value fluctuates with market and economic conditions. We do not offer any guarantees on the rate of return.

What happens if there is a year where the fund loses money?
If Charitus' investments experience a year with negative returns, no income will be paid out and we will adjust the opening value of each fund accordingly for the beginning of the next fiscal year. As long as the money stays invested, this is a “paper loss”. Our experience has been that markets often rebound after experiencing a year of negative investment returns.
Are Charitus' investments covered by an investor insurance plan?

The value of Charitus' investments is subject to fluctuations that are outside of our control. There is no insurance plan that guarantees the value of principal in an investment partner’s fund. However, the securities that make up Charitus' investment portfolio are actually held by our custodian, RBC Investor Services.

Who makes investment decisions?
Charitus has contracted out management of our investments to Fiera Capital. They make their decisions within the parameters set out by our Investment Policy Statement. The Charitus board of directors, investment committee and staff monitor investment performance regularly and meet with Fiera Capital quarterly to review results.
When do you pay out investment income?
We pay investment income to our fund partners in February of each year, based on the prior year’s experience.
Can we get some our principal back if we encounter an emergency?
With a managed fund, you can get all or part of your principal back at any time, with a reasonable period of notice. In the first five years of the fund’s existence we charge an administrative fee for return of principal. This is a flat amount that declines each year and disappears completely after the fifth year.
What is planned giving?
When someone leaves a gift to the church in their will, that’s a planned gift. There are half a dozen other common ways to make planned gifts. What they have in common is that the amounts given tend to be larger than the regular gifts we make to our church. And they may have future consequences that need to be carefully thought through. That’s the planning in planned giving.
I’m already supporting my church with my offerings. Why should I make a planned gift too?
Our regular offerings usually come from our income, while planned gifts come from accumulated assets. Income and assets are like two different pockets that have money in them. Giving from the asset pocket allows us to make gifts that will make a large impact and have long-term benefits for our church.
I’m a senior on a fixed income. How can I afford to make a planned gift?
Many types of planned gift only take effect at the end of the donor’s life. These are called “deferred gifts”, because the decision is made now but the money doesn’t change hands until later. This means that you can arrange a planned gift and continue to enjoy your current lifestyle with no changes whatsoever.
What happens if my church closes?
We can provide you with sample language that your lawyer can insert in your will. That way you can express where you want your gift to go in the event that your congregation closes while you are still living. If the church closes after it receives your gift, all of its assets will be distributed in an orderly fashion according to its constitutional documents. In many cases, care of the congregation’s assets will be transferred to the Eastern Synod.
I’ve already named the church in my will. Do I need to tell somebody?
We would be pleased if you would tell Lutheran Planned Giving about planned gifts you have already made. This gives us a way to measure the impact planned gifts are having on the life of the church. More important, it allows us to thank you for your generosity.