Dear Council Chairpersons, Leaders and Rostered Ministers of the Eastern Synod,
Yes, it’s that time of year again! Once again we are writing to let you know that we are looking for partners with whom to engage in creative, new mission initiatives!
Who are we?
We are a standing committee of the Eastern Synod that reviews and approves grant applications from congregations, Ministry Areas and related institutions to support short and long term Mission Initiatives as well as Compassionate Justice initiatives addressing hunger and poverty related issues in the wider community. Funding for the short and long term mission grants we provide comes from synodical and national endowment funds that were created through the generosity of our forebearers to advance the mission of the church. Funds in support of community Compassionate Justice initiatives come to us via Canadian Lutheran World Relief.
What are we seeking?
We are looking for creative mission project proposals from congregations, specialized ministries and Ministry Areas that we can encourage and support with finances and prayer. Give some particular thought to:
Visioning events, exploring new ministry partnerships, consulting, specialized interim ministry, media acquisition etc.
Focus on Partnership/Area Mission Projects:
Our Synod’s Ministry Areas are envisioning how churches partnering together can do much good for the sake of God’s Kingdom. We think the joint expertise and enthusiasm of groups of churches will have much potential for success. For example: churches developing area ministry strategies or jointly sponsoring refugee families and community outreach programmes
One-‐time Promotional and Outreach Opportunities:
This could include website or graphic redesigns or one-‐time community events and communication projects. Last year, we helped a number of congregations communicate with their neighbourhoods and establish new community partnerships.
Poverty Reduction Initiatives:
Canadian Lutheran World Relief provides us with funds to support domestic hunger issues via Compassionate Justice grants. We currently help fund, for instance, a breakfast programme for hungry neighbours in Orillia, a healthy food distribution programme in Hamilton and a variety of community garden projects across the synod.
Supporting Ethnic, New Immigrant Ministries:
We want to support efforts to reach out to new Canadians. We support a vibrant and growing Mandarin and Cantonese mission congregation in Markham. Similarly, a new inner-city ministry in Hamilton, ON is reaching out to new immigrants and the urban poor.
Potential recipients can apply for grants in three categories:
Compassionate Justice Initiatives
Grants are available for activities that:
a) Build awareness on hunger and poverty issues as well as solutions through education, leadership development and advocacy.
b) Focus on domestic hunger and poverty issues with priority given to: -Food security (i.e. production, distribution, acquisition, nutrition, land use) -Employment (i.e. job training, counselling, placement, child care) -Development (i.e. preventative and primary health care, water and sanitation, literacy, housing, social services, environmental issues).
c) Are well planned in cooperation with and build on the social, cultural and spiritual resources of people who have access to limited material resources.
d) Promote self-reliance.
e) Operate in collaboration with other ecumenical and social services partners.
Mission Partnership Support – Short Term and Long Term
Note: Short Term Partnership programming is for projects to be completed in a single calendar year. Long Term Partnership Support is for programming taking place over the course of two or more years.
Mission Partnership grants can be made available to support:
a) Gatherings, meetings and/or conversations that foster a renewed discernment of God’s mission.
b) Leadership development facilitating the formation of leaders for addressing the challenges of discerning and supporting God’s mission in our changing context.
c) Staffing to achieve discerned mission goals. For example, contracts for consulting services, project development, organizing and/or presentations.
d) Funding to rent or purchase equipment or space in support of experimental ministry initiatives.
e) Working in cooperation with other churches, non-profit organizations or businesses, particularly if they are locally based.
f) Connecting with those who are minimally, or not at all, involved in church life.
g) Initiatives that will continue in a fiscally sustainable manner after the initial funding period.
h) Production of promotional materials.
i) Development funds for new mission opportunities.
j) Providing internship placement in a mission congregation.
k) Assisting in providing short-term funds to engage additional staff to facilitate outreach ministry.
l) Supporting new ethnic-specific ministries.
m) Surveys for new mission opportunities.
n) Financial and stewardship planning.
o) Congregational re-development.
This list is not meant to be exhaustive. Use your imaginations and follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit! Every application will be considered but please note that preference is given to applications which demonstrate a significant partnership commitment on the part of the applicant.
Two Grant Application Forms (one for Short-Term and Compassionate Justice Funding applications; and another for Long-Term Funding applications) are available on our Mission Committee blog page on the Eastern Synod website http://www.easternsynod.org/content/mission-committee. The deadline to submit these forms is September 29, 2017, either to firstname.lastname@example.org or through regular mail or fax to the Synod Office.
Dorothy Frook (Walkerton): email@example.com
Rev. Jun Gao (Toronto): firstname.lastname@example.org
Rev. Stan Johnstone (Ottawa): email@example.com
Jim Krats (Sudbury): firstname.lastname@example.org
Rev. Sebastian Meadows-Helmer (Toronto): email@example.com
Rev. Tanya Ramer (New Hamburg): firstname.lastname@example.org
Peggy Read (Burlington): email@example.com
Lynn Slack (Mahone Bay): firstname.lastname@example.org