In the Money: Millions of Dollars Available for Grassroots Ministry Projects
- $2.5 million will be distributed for use in 2022.
- Money can be used to build a school, to pay a salary, to fund evangelism—anything, according to PGTS Director Dennis R. Carlson.
- Deadline for submitting a project proposal to the GC’s PGTS Department is August 1, 2022.
03 May 2022 | From the Adventist News Network:
Local churches with a creative and evangelistic spirit will soon be able to access millions of dollars of funding thanks to the General Conference’s (GC) new “Mission Impact Fund.” The fund will support “I Will Go” initiatives, with special preference given to those being administered by local churches. “I Will Go” is a strategic plan of the Adventist Church that focuses on mission, spiritual growth, and leadership; each area has key performance indicators (KPIs) that help specify objectives.
The Mission Impact Fund will not be limited by project type or geographical location, unlike other funds administered by the General Conference for mission work; its primary focus is to fund projects at a local level. The fund was established through a partnership between GC Treasury and Planned Giving and Trust Services (PGTS).
“Unlike other funds, this one will be distributed worldwide. Every year, funding will be available to every Division,” said PGTS Director Dennis R. Carlson.
“It’s also unrestricted, which means that the money can be used to build a school, to pay a salary, to fund evangelism… anything! So long as the purpose is to advance the mission of the Church’s current ‘I Will Go’ strategic plan, we will consider it,” said Carlson. “We don’t want to limit what the local church can do. We want them to bring their crazy project ideas to us to see how we can make them a reality.”
The projected starting balance for the Mission Impact Fund is approximately $12.5 million US. This means that $2.5 million will be distributed for use in 2022. This allocation will be announced at Annual Council in 2022 for use during 2023.
This year, the deadline for submitting a project proposal to the GC’s PGTS Department is August 1, 2022. Proposals will be reviewed, and funding decisions will be announced at Annual Council 2022. In 2023 and each year thereafter, projects will need to be submitted by May 1, and funding decisions will be announced at Annual Council in the same year the proposal is submitted.
Local churches will be able to apply for funding by submitting a Mission Impact Fund Project Proposal through the process prescribed by their Division. The PGTS Department of their related Division will submit the project to the GC PGTS for approval.
“Even though the focus is on the local church and community, the system will need to operate through the chain of command—from the Field or Conference, then to the Union, and then to the Division,” said Carlson. “We don’t want churches doing something independently that’s totally opposed to what their Division is doing. While the church will oversee the projects themselves, the division will be the gatekeeper.”
While some funds that come through planned giving are restricted in their use—for example, to be dedicated specifically to evangelism, or to building a hospital in Africa—the unrestricted funds are difficult to trace. This ongoing problem inspired the creation of the Mission Impact Fund.
“What really excites me as a Planned Giving Director is that we will have a vote for every dollar that’s being spent from this fund. We’ll know where it went. And when those projects get finished, part of the accountability process is that the Division must return a report of what happened. This will give us videos, photos and stories to encourage the rest of our members to be faithful and remember how God has worked,” said Carlson.
Currently, the Mission Impact Fund Project Proposal is still being developed by the GC’s IT department but will be available in the next few weeks. In the meantime, local churches with creative ministry ideas are encouraged to notify their local conference of their plans, so they’ll be ready to apply when applications open. To donate directly to the Mission Impact Fund or for further enquiries, email Dennis Carlson at CarlsonD@gc.adventist.org.
Visit www.willplan.org for more information about Planned Giving & Trust Services.
This article has been edited by AT staff.
(Photo: The General Conference’s new “Mission Impact Fund” has millions of dollars available to support “I Will Go” projects, with special preference given to those being administered by local churches. Photo via “I Will Go” website.)
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