My leaving for sabbatical next week has had little impact on the ongoing work of the church, which shows no signs of slowing down. The new elders have begun their training—we have a session tonight from seven to nine—and the MANNA team has met to begin the work of awarding grants from general endowment income. Small grants to agencies we have come to think of as “ministry partners” were approved by Session last Sunday night. Now MANNA is looking forward to getting requests for up to two larger grants for new initiatives.
Under the leadership of Endowment Chair Brent Opell, MANNA has put a lot of work into a new process for receiving requests. Brent will be making an announcement about it at the start of worship this Sunday, and there will be a full description of how to apply for a grant in the bulletin this Sunday and in the May newsletter. What excites me about the new process is that it puts church members in charge. I’ll leave the details to the write-up, but the ground-up approach encourages congregational engagement and excitement—which is always a good thing. No more than two large grants can be awarded in a given year, so not every request will be funded. The decisions are in the hands of the MANNA team, making it a meaningful assignment.
Every ministry in the church is invited to send a representative to the MANNA team, so if the idea of promoting, studying and praying about good projects to fund excites you, be sure to volunteer your time next spring. Strong leadership from the pews seen as that seen among the elders and on the MANNA team is one reason why BPC is thriving, and why I am not worried about good things continuing while I’m away. I will hold you in my prayers this summer, and ask you to hold me and my family in your prayers as well.
Scripture Readings: Acts 2:14a, 36-41; Psalm 116:1-4,12-19; 1 Peter 1:17-23; Luke 24:13-35.
The prayer list can be found here.