Do you ever wonder where your pledge dollars go?
Christ Church Cathedral is fortunate to have all of our operating costs covered by our endowment, thanks to the generosity of Eli Lilly and others from our past. This puts us in a rare but desirable position: being able to give all of our pledge dollars to those who need it most.
Christ Church Cathedral gives pledge dollars in the form of Covenant Grants, which was formerly the responsibility of the Missions Group. In the past couple of years, the Missions group has undergone a transition. Under the guidance of Canon Vicar Shannon Mac-Vean Brown, their focus has turned to helping our congregation engage in outreach, both local and global. The group’s name was changed from Missions to Outreach Missions Team.
The job of administering Covenant Grants was given back to the vestry. Late in 2016, a small vestry subcommittee was formed in order to begin the work of mindfully evaluating our granting practice, mission, and priorities. The hope was to fully align our giving with the vision of Christ Church Cathedral, as well as with the hearts of our congregation.
The Covenant Grants Committee has now expanded to include members of the previous Missions Group, members from each vestry class, as well as lay people who have interest/experience in grants administration. Current Members include: David Baldwin, April Culbertson, Erick Gama, Shannon Joyce, Jacquelyn Kenton, Jude Magers, Donna Watzke, Betty Whaley, and Steve Whaley
After much discussion about the direction of this process, it was determined that the work required for such a change could not be made in a timely manner to fund grants for 2017. A decision was made to contact all grant recipients from 2016 by phone to inform them that we will consider an application for 2017. The committee felt that this needed to be taken care of prior to establishing new procedures for 2018. We received applications and met in February to review them and decide upon funding. The following organizations will receive funds in 2017:
- St. Philip’s Episcopal Church Feeding Ministry
- The Storehouse Food Pantry at St. John’s Speedway
- St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church – Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry
- St. Thomas Clinic
- The Sharing Place Pantry – Lutheran Child & Family Services
- Horizon House
- WeCare Missions, Nigeria
- St. John’s Episcopal Church Latino Ministry
- Alternatives, Inc
- The Julian Center
- Exodus Refugee Immigration, Inc
- Waycross Camp & Conference Center
- Dayspring Center
- John P. Craine House
- Second Helpings
As of this writing, enough pledge dollars have been received to fund the first two food pantries. As pledges are received through the year, checks will be sent to the others.
The Covenant Grants committee also voted to set aside some of the pledge dollars in order to fund special projects by the Outreach Missions Group in 2017, including Dayspring work days, Hats for Indy, Adopt-A-Family, and others.
Now that the granting work for 2017 is well in hand, we have much work ahead of us. We hope to have the finalized guiding principles, grant narrative, guidelines and application for 2018 covenant grants finalized and presented to the vestry for review by late summer 2017.
respectfully submitted by April Culbertson