Will and Bequest Legacies

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WILL POWER: that's what you get when you write a will:
  •  power to use the fruits of your lifetime's work to provide for your loved ones as you see fit, not as the government determines. Dying without a will (intestate) results in your estate being distributed according to a strict government formula which does not consider your particular situation.
  •  power to ease the transition of your death for those you leave behind. You also have control: as long as you live, you can revoke or change your will at any time. 
  •  power to create a legacy or charitable gift to your church and community that will continue to provide support for your favourite causes into the future.
  • power to avoid Intestate status: View our “Giving It All Away“ presentation about the importance of preparing a Will and the consequences of not doing so.
  • By remembering The Anglican Church of Canada, you can also use your will to help provide for the mission and ministry of the church in your own parish, in your diocese, nationally or overseas. Bequests enable the Church to build a solid funding base to support God's work far into the future

If you have a will, you can easily change it (add a codicil) to make a bequest to The Anglican Church of Canada. If you don't have a will, or yours is out-of-date, this is the time to prepare or rewrite one. You'll find that it's easy and it's not expensive.

A bequest to The Anglican Church of Canada brings a tax benefit, too. When you die, your estate is entitled to a donation receipt for the full value of your gift, which means a significant tax credit on your final tax return.

Not only can you choose how to make a bequest, you can also choose one or more purposes for which it will be used. While most bequests to The Anglican Church of Canada are for its general purposes (as in the first example), you may also make a restricted bequest for a particular program or ministry.

Subject to church policies, you may specify that the principal of your bequest be held as an endowment from which only the income is spent, or you can establish a fund in your name, or the name of a family member, friend or colleague, as a thanksgiving offering or as a memorial.

A Power To Vary clause is a good idea where a bequest is intended. It gives the Church the power to use your gift for a different purpose in the event that the original purpose is no longer possible and/or necessary.


You may make a bequest in one of several ways. Here are some examples, with the appropriate wording:

A general bequest is for a certain dollar amount of property, usually cash: e.g., I give to The Diocese of New Westminster the sum of $____ to be used for the general purposes of the Diocese at the discretion of the Diocesan Council.

A specific bequest directs that the Church is to receive a specific piece of property: e.g., I give 500 shares of XYZ stock to The Anglican Initiatives Fund of the Diocese of New Westminster.

A residual bequest designates all or part of what remains after debts, taxes, expenses and other bequests have been paid: e.g., I give 50 per cent of the rest, residue and remainder of my estate to The Mission to Seafarer’s Society.

A contingent bequest takes effect only under certain conditions: e.g., In the event that my spouse does not survive me, I give to The General Synod of The Anglican Church of Canada the sum of $__.
If you wish to do any of these things, it is important that you consult a planned giving representative of the Diocese or your Parish to make sure that your wishes can be met and that the bequest provision is properly worded.

Download our SAMPLE WILL CLAUSES document to help you prepare your bequest.
If you need assistance, contact the Director of Planned Giving, Glen Mitchell at (604) 684-6306 Local 218



The BC branch of the Canadian Bar Association operates a Lawyer Referral Service to assist individuals in finding a lawyer who practices law in the area required. Lawyers offer a maximum 30 minute consultation at a cost of $25.00. To locate a lawyer who may be able to assist you in the writing or changing of your Will, visit the BC CBA website for further information: CLICK HERE.

The Lewis Fund


The Diocese is grateful for the generous
bequest of $1.25 Million from the Estate
of Margaret Louise Lewis. The gift was
made in memory of her mother and
sister who was for many years the
Head Librarian at the Carnegie Branch
at Main and Hastings in Vancouver.
Her Will asked that the Diocese “use
all or in part of this gift, … for the
assistance of spouses and children of
deceased clergy.”


The Diocese established the
Lewis Fund as part of the Anglican
Initiatives Fund after its by-laws
were changed by Synod in 2004 .
Income from the fund will be used
first, for deceased clergy family
support; and second, when there
is excess income, for other
purposes as determined by the
AIF administrators.


Ms. Lewis celebrated her centennial
of life before she died in 2002. An
art teacher at Kitsilano High School
for many years, Ms. Lewis was an
ardent supporter of Emily Carr College
of Art & Design and a lifetime member
of St. George’s Parish Vancouver. She
and her sister, Gwyneth often welcomed
parishioners to their Vancouver home.


They loved to travel, visiting India
and Egypt among many other places
in the world. People who knew her say
she had a good sense of humour and
she was very interested in young people”.


We give thanks to God for the gift of
gratitude shown by Margaret Lewis.