28 TheBettyHags Memorial Fund LIFTINGA CONGREGATION E V E R Y O N E K N E W that Mrs. Betty Hags lived simply and was financially secure. She faithfully attended the 150-member Salem Lutheran Church nearly every Sunday of her adult life, and had casually mentioned that she would remember the church in her will. No one, not her pastor, not her friends in the church’s sewing circle, not her neighbors — realized that the quiet, sweet-natured widow would, after she died at age 95 in March 2016, leave nearly $800,000 toThe Community Foundation ofWestmoreland County. Her fund benefits tiny Salem Lutheran in Delmont, a community of 3,000 residents about 9 miles from the county seat of Greensburg.The Betty Hags Memorial Fund will provide the congregation about $30,000 a year in perpetuity. “People just teared up,” says the foundation’s executive director, Phil Koch, when he met with the church’s council in November 2016 and announced the gift — and all the zeroes attached to it. “It was an emotional moment.” Instead of a direct gift that might be depleted in a few years, this fund will provide a permanent revenue stream to the congregation and the community it serves. Pastor KaraPropstshareshermemoriesofBettyHagsand whattheamazinggift meansfortheircommunity. ‌ Pastor Kara Propst of Salem Lutheran Church, pictured here in the church’s second- floor sanctuary, remembers Betty Hags as a woman of faith and creativity whose generosity surprised an entire congregation.