Leaving a Gift in your Will

Supporting Holy Cross and the Dominican Friars


A Legacy Gift to Help Future Generations

The Dominican Friars were founded as a ‘mendicant’ order, following the command of Jesus Christ to his disciples to ‘take nothing for your journey’ (Luke 9:3).

This means we give up all personal property, and live in close dependence on the people to whom we minister.

The Importance of Gifts in Wills

The ability of people to give to good causes during their lifetime is usually limited by their day-to-day financial needs, and those of their dependants. But often people can give more support through their Will.

The money that people leave to the friars through legacies is a very important means of support for us. They typically make up one fifth of our charity’s annual income. Many of our most urgent needs over the years have been resolved through generous bequests. In particular, they have helped with projects to maintain and renew our churches and other buildings, which typically account for a quarter of our annual expenditure.

Legacies can be a way for the donor to make a positive and lasting impact on the friars’ mission. They can on occasion also serve to memorialise the donor, for example by establishing a scholarship or teaching post in their name, or remembering them on a plaque when they have paid for a significant piece of building work.

Could you remember the Dominican Friars in your Will?

When providing for the needs of family and friends in your Will, do please also consider making a bequest to the friars.

Legacies to the Dominicans do make a huge difference. Making a gift through your Will enables us to advance our mission, and larger legacies can help us to make big steps forward that otherwise might take years to accomplish.

The Friars remember all their benefactors every day in their prayers.

Free Will-writing Service

To encourage our supporters to write their Wills, we are able to offer access to a free Will-writing service.

Telling us your intentions

As we plan for the future, it would help if you let us know if you intend to leave something to the Dominican Friars in your Will.

  • You can email us via our Development Office and we will record your intention on our records. (This is entirely optional and furthermore creates no obligation on your part to make a bequest.)

If you have not yet included the Dominicans in your Will, we offer below some practical details about doing so.


Practical Details about Making a Will

Tax benefits of giving to charity

Giving to a charity through your Will allows you to reduce the burden of inheritance tax on your next of kin. Inheritance tax is currently (2024) payable on estates valued at £325,000 or over, with tax set at 40% on the amount over this threshold; however, if you donate 10% or more of your net estate to charity, the rate of inheritance tax is reduced to 36% on non-exempt gifts. You should always seek the advice of your solicitors when drafting a clause designed to benefit from this reduction in the rate of tax.

Who to talk to about making your Will

Making a Will is easy. All you have to do is consider how you wish to divide up your property, and make sure these wishes are clearly communicated. You can also use your Will to give clear instructions about your funeral.

It is advisable to find a solicitor to help you to draft it. The same is true if you have made your Will already, but want to revise it because your circumstances have changed.

The Dominican Friars can also provide information to your solicitors should they need it – you can contact Richard at our central offices on 01865 610208 (email development@english.op.org), and we will be pleased to assist you.

Supporting specific Dominican houses or funds

If you would like your Will to benefit a specific Dominican house such as Holy Cross Priory, please be sure to state this in your Will. You may find it helpful to talk to the friars there for guidance on the particular things that could be supported by a legacy. Here are some key activities of our organisation that you might wish to specify as the beneficiary of your legacy.

  • Leicester
    • Holy Cross Priory: the community of friars and the buildings they live in
    • Holy Cross Parish: the fabric of the church and ministry to local people
  • Educational Apostolate
    • Training Fund: forming the next generation of Dominican friars
    • Blackfriars Studium: funding those who teach in our ‘seminary’ in Oxford
    • Blackfriars Hall: our Private Hall for students within Oxford University
  • Overseas Missions
    • St Martin’s Mission: funding our houses in Jamaica and Grenada

Ways to give through your Will

In making a bequest, you have a choice of three ways to give:

  • A percentage of your estate – this means a portion or the whole of what is left once debts and funeral expenses have been paid, and other bequests made.
  • A fixed amount – a specific sum of money
  • Property or goods – a building you own, or other things such as stocks and shares, or pieces of jewellery.

In drawing up your Will, your solicitor will need to be given the exact details for each of these three ways.

Details of the friars’ registered charity

If you wish to leave something to the Dominican Friars, please note the following details to include in your Will:

Charity name: The English Province of the Order of Preachers
Charity registration numbers: 231192 (England and Wales); SC039062 (Scotland).
Registered address: Blackfriars, St Giles, OXFORD OX1 3LY.