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Mid-Kentucky Presbytery offers grants to its congregations to help them care for Creation by installing electric car charging stations

September 6, 2022

Photo by Chuttersnap via Unsplash

The 49 churches in Mid-Kentucky Presbytery are being offered grants on a sliding scale, depending on their membership, to help them install electric car charging stations.

The rationale, presbytery officials say, is that faith and fuel have a lot in common. Believers and faith-curious folk have long visited church to get their spiritual batteries recharged. Worship, community, Bible study and service fill a person’s spiritual batteries so they may be discharged for Christ’s mission in the world throughout the week. Faith is the fuel that makes disciples grow spiritually. But what about physically?

That’s why the presbytery, through the unanimous vote on April 28 of its Coordinating Commission, is challenging its congregations to add free electricity to the list of faithful fuels available at church. The installation of free electric vehicle charging stations witnesses to the Church’s commitment to the stewardship of all Creation and is one small step that shows the world that the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) seeks to practice the Earth care that we preach.

Nearly $100,000 has been earmarked for these grants. Churches with up to 100 members can get up to $9,000, the estimated total cost of installation. Churches between 100 and 300 members can get up to $6,000. The four largest congregations in the presbytery are eligible for $3,000 each. Individual congregations are responsible for the cost of the electricity used, a bill expected to be up to $100 annually.

The presbytery is using the expertise of Evolve KY, which describes itself as “a group of energetic owners and enthusiasts of electric vehicles.”

“One thing we all have in common,” the organization’s website states, “is the desire to move our current boring state of driving forward — and fast.”

The presbytery’s grant program has four objectives:

Provide fee-free electric car charging stations for the benefit of churches in the presbytery and their neighbors by demonstrating “our commitment to the creation of a better environment for all.”

Become identified as a church community that puts its resources to work where its beliefs are. This becomes a talking point for new member attraction.

Demonstrate to youth in the presbytery “that their church’s leadership hears their concerns about their future and are willing to invest in appropriate environmental action.”

Provide funding assistance on a sliding scale recognizing the financial limitations of individual churches.

According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, Kentucky is the 48th-ranked state for the number of charging stations per 100,000 residents.

The presbytery asks congregations to “prayerfully and swiftly” make their decision to participate in this electric car charger program “and let your faith — and a little bit of electricity — be the fuel that makes the world go round.”

This article was adapted from a presbytery newsletter article written by the Rev. John Odom, general presbyter for Mid-Kentucky Presbytery. Learn more here.

Today’s Focus: Mid-Kentucky Presbytery

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Almighty and Everlasting God, strengthen the church so it may witness to your faithfulness, building communities passionately committed to the Lord Jesus Christ. Inspire individuals with the fire of your Holy Spirit and bless their work to your glory. Amen.