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Eight new worshiping communities, two presbyteries receive Mission Program Grants

Grants awarded help six ‘1001’ communities get started and aid two more established ministries

by Paul Seebeck | Presbyterian News Service

Ghanaian Fellowship Ministry and Woodhaven Presbyterian Church celebrate Pentecost during a joint worship service in 2018. (Photos courtesy of Ghanaian Fellowship)

LOUISVILLE — On behalf of the Presbyterian Mission Agency,  the Mission Development Resources Committee (MDRC) recently approved 10  Mission Program Grants to  1001 New Worshiping Communities and two presbyteries for their congregational transformation work.

Six ‘1001’ communities received grants of $7,500 to start ministries for:

  • Caregivers in greater Philadelphia area
  • A West Virginia community fighting opioid epidemic
  • The Ghananian community in Dallas-Fort Worth area
  • Men in Daytona Beach, Florida, who are fighting addiction
  • For a growing Hispanic community’s newly opened Hispanic graduate school
  • First- and second-generation Hispanic immigrants in Kansas City.

And two new worshiping communities received $25,000 grants to help them live into their mission and ministry with:

  • Ostracized and marginalized groups of people in Portland, Oregon
  • An inclusive community in Lucketts, Virginia.

Each grant recipient, with a brief description of its ministry, is listed below:

$7,500 Seed Grant recipients:

  • The Caregiver Society (Presbytery of Philadelphia, Synod of the Trinity) is doing invaluable work, especially in the current state of pandemic, in providing sacred space for caregivers of all types to create a community and share Scripture. This faith community, started by Kearni Warren in partnership with Presbytery of Philadelphia, has provided support and encouragement for those living and working as caregivers.
  • The Community Cup (Shenandoah, Mid-Atlantic) is striving to open a faith- and community-building coffee shop in a town that has seen a great increase in those suffering from the opioid epidemic. The coffee shop would not only help revitalize the downtown area of Martinsburg, West Virginia, but allow a place for those in recovery to seek the Word and find support.
  • By providing nurture and spiritual support, the Ghanaian Fellowship Ministry of Woodhaven (Grace, Sun) is active in the life of the Ghanaian community in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
  • New Corinthians (Central Florida, South Atlantic) serves men who are seeking the love of Christ but have been disappointed by the church and those who have not had an experience with the church. New Corinthians provides a space where residents seek to experience God’s presence in Daytona Beach, Florida even as they fight addiction.
  • Nueva Vida (Mission, Sun) aims to provide Presbyterian worship opportunities for a growing Hispanic community that includes a newly opened graduate school.
  • Unidos en Oracion (Heartland, Mid-America) provides Bible study, community outreach, and worship services for a population of new and first-generation Hispanic immigrants in Kansas City, Kansas, in cooperation with a former Presbyterian church.

Faith Chapel Community Church in Lucketts, Virginia, is about hour away by car from Washington, D.C. (Photo by Dexios Design)

$25,000 Growth Grant recipients:

  • Community of Pilgrims (Cascades, Pacific) utilizes non-traditional styles of worship and study for a population of ostracized or marginalized groups of people in the Portland area, including persons who live with intellectual disabilities, members of the deaf community, people of color, and those who are LGBTQ.
  • Faith Chapel Community Church, (National Capital, Mid-Atlantic) is striving to be a fully inclusive faith community that takes into account the demographics of the surrounding population and their worship needs. This NWC operates a monthly food pantry and multiple weekly events that combine social gatherings with worship. Watch video.

Presbytery Level Congregation Tranformation Grant recipients:

  • Missional Presbytery – Missional Church (Inland Northwest, Alaska-Northwest) $25,000

This ministry is entering its second year with the Presbytery of Inland Northwest.  The project has proven a dynamic and earnest approach to revitalizing the local Presbyterian constituency while reaching out to younger age groups and newer members.

  • Vital Congregations Initiative (New York City, Northeast) $21,000

As it enters the second year of transformation, the Presbytery of New York City is finding that now more than ever, it is important to find better ways to engage with its congregations in order to assess, discern, and live into transformative actions that increase vitality

Mission Program Grants are made available through the Racial Equity & Women’s Intercultural Ministries of the Presbyterian Mission Agency. The grants support the transforming work of new worshiping communities and mid councils.

In 2012, the 220th General Assembly of the PC(USA) declared a commitment to a churchwide movement resulting in the creation of 1001 worshiping communities over the next 10 years.

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