The following is an extended version of Jane & Brandon Linton’s story from the Fall 2017 edition of The Champion newsletter.
Jane and Brandon Linton are wise beyond their years.
The Virginia Tech graduates still possess a youthfulness that would make them right at home on campus, but their faithful financial commitment to UMFS demonstrates just how much they’ve grown since their days in Blacksburg.
For seven of the nearly 10 years they’ve been married, Jane, 30, and Brandon, 33, have been monthly donors.
“We look at our giving and our budgeting as a statement of our theology,” said Brandon, whose employer, CarMax, also is an unwavering supporter of UMFS. “What do we care to invest in? What do we think is important to God? What is important to us?”
As parents of three children, ages 2, 5 and 8, it’s clear that family is atop the Lintons’ priority list. Therefore, supporting UMFS and its vision of empowering children is an obvious choice, Brandon said.
“It’s exciting to say that we can commit money to something we feel strongly about.”
The Lintons first came to know UMFS in 2008 through volunteer opportunities with their church. Brandon would spend time shooting hoops with the boys at the UMFS cottages. Jane would bring baked goods to the girls.
“They didn’t care what I brought them, they cared that I came,” Jane said. “To me, that was the best thing; that the girls knew I cared enough to stop by.”
And caring is something Jane and her husband both learned the importance of at a young age. Her parents divorced when she was three, and Brandon never knew his father at all.
“But we still had other people that filled in those gaps for us,” Jane said. “And that’s why we’d like to be gap fillers for others.”
As Jane and Brandon’s family continued to grow, the amount of time they were able to devote to volunteering at UMFS decreased. It was at this juncture that they began focusing more on financial support.
Volunteering still is a priority, Jane said, and she and Brandon hope to find the time to do so again.
“Being a donor-volunteer would be the perfect balance,” Jane said.
Adopting or fostering a child also is part of the conversation. It’s something the Lintons say they aspire to.
In working toward that goal, Brandon wondered how he and Jane might prepare themselves to take on such a responsibility. And true to his calm and calculated demeanor, Brandon answered perfectly the question he had posed to himself.
“It will require a certain maturity,” he said.
If you’d like to learn more about becoming a donor, please visit UMFS online.