| By Reverend Carol RosineEmilia Dean was the one who told me that Helen Hamant had moved back to Franklin to care for her mother. It was 1987 and as I was the new minister in town, Emilia thought that I should call on these old Universalists. Ruth was bedridden by then and in a form of dementia, so we communicated by singing Christmas carols and old hymns during my visits. Helen had spent her nursing career in Boston but she had grown up in our church, so following her mother’s death, she started worshipping with us once again. It was a very different church from the one in which she had grown up, but she embraced the changes and was pleased to see the way in which the congregation had come back to life. When we purchased our property, it was Helen who financed the sign at the entrance, a sign that she helped design.
Back in 1999 Helen told me that she had established a Charitable Gift Annuity through the UUA and that when she died, FUSF would receive the balance. This information had slipped my mind, but following her death, sure enough, there was the paperwork at the bottom of her dresser drawer, so I contacted the UUA to tell them know of Helen’s death and within a few weeks, we will receive a check earmarked for religious education for our children.
What a wonderful unexpected gift Helen has given our children. And you know what? You could do the same! I’m not clear how Charitable Gift Annuities work except that you invest a sum of money with the UUA from which you receive annual returns and upon your death, the church will receive the balance. You can contact the UUA for more information if this is something you might like to consider.
I have never had any assets to establish an annuity, but I did include FUSF in my will a long time ago. It’s not a specific amount, just a small percentage of any estate that might remain following my death. Have you done something similar? If not, you might consider including FUSF in your estate plans. Like Helen, this would be a great way to touch the future of our spiritual community.
And now for summer plans: You will note elsewhere that summer services will not begin until July 19th this year. The sanctuary and foyer will be in major chaos for 4 weeks while painting happens. This is being done by volunteers, so please stay alert for ways in which you, too, can volunteer your time, especially to help with the prep work that will need to be done before painting can even be started. It you have some painting experience be sure to let Barbara Evans or Alec Danz know.
I am going to the UUA’s General Assembly in Portland Oregon from June 22 – 28 and will then take a week’s vacation from August 1-8 with my family when we all converge on Ferry Beach like we did last summer. These are the only times when I plan to be away, so please remember that I continue to be your minister during the summer. I’m hoping to not schedule regular meetings, but if you have a family emergency or some other pastoral concern, please know that I will welcome your call.
I hope that each of you will find moments of rest & renewal this summer.
Sunday services begin at 10 a.m. Children and youth religious education 10 a.m.
phone: (508) 528-5348
Our Meetinghouse is located at 262 Chestnut Street, Franklin, MA.
Our mailing address is: PO Box 316, Franklin, MA 02038