At the March 1, 2014, meeting of the Executive Council, Finance Committee member Cherie Shipp reported on a new Congregational Grant Requests approval process “to support the growth in mission and ministry for new or restart of existing congregations. Financial assistance will be provided to supplement clergy compensation and benefits. The goal is to support growth of congregations in their mission and ministry and to help them to self-sufficiency in three years or less.”
The process was put in place at the bishop’s request, and shifts from a bishop centered decision to a process by which the elected lay people and clergy of the Executive Council make the decision. It is designed to increase accountability and transparency.
The process works like this: congregations will submit a grant application for assessment to two Executive Council groups – the Congregational Development Workgroup and the Finance Committee. The Congregational Development Workgroup will assess the applicant’s ministry and stewardship elements and the Finance Committee will assess the applicant congregation’s financial needs and stewardship and the availability of diocesan funds. Applying congregations will also make presentations to those bodies. If both bodies give an affirmative recommendation, the grant request is then submitted to the Executive Council for final approval. The outer limit for grants is three years, but renewal of grants from year to year is not guaranteed.
For more information and grant request forms, contact Diocesan Treasurer Bob Hicks at firstname.lastname@example.org.