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Today in the Mission Yearbook

Nineteen new worshiping communities awarded Mission Program Grants


Thirteen get $7,500 to help get them started, while six receive $25K to help them grow

December 26, 2019

On behalf of the Presbyterian Mission Agency, during its latest grant cycle the Mission Development Resources Committee (MDRC) recently approved 19 Mission Program Grants to worshiping communities.

Thirteen $7,500 seed grants were awarded to help a diverse number of 1001 New Worshiping Communities get started in various presbyteries across the country. In addition, two existing worshiping communities will receive $25,000 investment grants to help them live into their mission and ministry. Four will receive $25,000 growth grants as they work toward becoming viable Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) communities.

The worshiping community grant recipients are listed below, followed by their presbytery and synod:

Seed Grants

Agape is Love (Minnesota Valleys, Lakes and Prairies) provides spiritual guidance and faith formation to the LGBTQ+ community in Marshall, Minnesota, and the surrounding area.

Athlete Life/Vida Atletica (Riverside, Southern California and Hawaii) is led by Lazaro Silva, who  has led sports-based children’s outreach ministries around the world.

Be Well (San Francisco, Pacific) began when Clementica Chacón-Garcia found work transporting people as a driver for a ride-hailing company. She had spiritual and therapeutic conversations with strangers, and that led to Be Well, which provides a safe space where people experience God together through spiritual practices.

Contemplate Lincoln (Homestead, Lakes and Prairies) is a new worshiping community focused on experiential worship and Christian learning in Lincoln, Nebraska, who are spiritual but not religious.

David’s Court Ministries (Greater Atlanta, South Atlantic) is led by Columbia Theological Seminary international student Ebenezer Alonge. David’s Court provides a church home, fellowship and solidarity to African immigrants in the area.

Growing Neighbors, a Spokane, Wash., new worshiping community, grows through urban farming and community development. (Photo courtesy of Growing Neighbors)

Growing Neighbors (Inland Northwest, Alaska-Northwest) is partnering with community organizations in Spokane, Washington, to grow healthy neighborhoods through urban farming and community development.  

Iglesia Y Fe Esperanza (Northwest Coast, Alaska-Northwest) is a creative, interdependent, ecumenical experiment in ministry with the Hispanic/Latino community in Everett, Washington.

Lyrical Opposition (San Francisco, Pacific) is a new faith and arts community that showcases lyrical artists in local venues, art galleries, open mic cafés and PC(USA) churches in San Francisco.

Parkside Church (Charleston-Atlantic, South Atlantic) ministers to the unchurched and dechurched — people who have not been to a service in six months — and the LGBTQ+ community in Charleston, South Carolina.

Psalms (Northwest Coast, Alaska-Northwest) is a gospel and songs group for local residents, including those in recovery and those returning from prison, in Burlington, Washington.

Raven-Brook Recovery Church (Lake Michigan, Covenant) works to provide community for people recovering from addiction and abuse and their impacted family members in Jackson, Michigan.

This Generation Connect (Pittsburgh, Trinity) began as a Bible study in leader Nathaniel Carter’s home in East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. As people brought food, they began to see themselves as a Eucharistic group that was being fed spiritually and physically, leading them to incorporate worship into their Bible study.

Warriors of Light (Heartland, Mid-America) is a worshiping community for women in Kansas City that emphasizes spiritual and community development through self-improvement, meditation, prayer and deeply personal worship.

The Rev. Michael Plank hosts a 1001 worshiping community at Underwod Park CrossFit in Fort Edward, N.Y. Plank co-founded and owns the facility along with his spouse, Loren Grogan. (Photo by Film 180, Michael Fitzer)

Investment Grants

Underwood Park CrossFit (Albany, Northeast) holds worship services on Friday nights for members of its fitness community. Watch a video.

Wild Goose Christian Community-Bonsack (The Peaks, Mid-Atlantic) seeks to connect with people in Roanoke, Virginia, who long for a sense of community and a spiritual place but will not attend a traditional church.

Growth Grants

Esperanza Viva (Los Ranchos, Southern California and Hawaii) is a Spanish-language worshiping community just outside of Los Angeles. It hosts worship and disciple classes  to provide opportunities for the unchurched to become family in Christ.

Farm Church (New Hope, Mid-Atlantic) is a Christ-centered community that is working to address food insecurity in the greater Durham, North Carolina, area. Read about Farm Church founder Ben Johnston-Krase.

Kirk of Holly Springs (New Hope, Mid-Atlantic) leadership wanted people in the community to experience Presbyterian worship. Since there was no PC(USA) congregation in Holly Springs, North Carolina, they formed a new worshiping community in 2012. Over the next three years, Kirk of Holly Springs is poised to become a self-sustaining PC(USA) congregation with 150–200 active members.

Trinity Ghanaian Presbyterian Fellowship (The James, Mid Atlantic) serves African Immigrant communities in Richmond, Virginia. It will celebrate its 10th anniversary in October.

Paul Seebeck, Mission Communications Strategist, Presbyterian Mission Agency

Today’s Focus:  Mission Program Grants

Let us join in prayer for: 

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Lisa Nelson, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Valéry Nodem, Presbyterian Mission Agency

Let us pray:

Lord, thank you for making us participants in your work. Please allow us to come together to share in your plans for creation and to place your plans above our own. Keep us in your love and grace. Amen.