At saint benedict’s table it has long been our practice to set aside a percentage of our offering income as a “mission tithe” to be shared with ministries, programs, and initiatives outside of our own church’s life. Strictly speaking, it is not yet a full 10% “tithe”, though we are working our way toward that. We’ve budgeted $14,300 for the mission grants for 2014, which is roughly 8% of our projected offering.
Why do we do this? Well, partly because just as we invite our individual members and friends to exercise personal stewardship, as a church community we are committed to doing the same. We also see it as a recognition that as a church we can’t do it all, so it just makes sense to partner with others who are doing good and creative and necessary work.
According to the Mission Fund Committee’s terms of reference, “Funding shall encompass both intentional partnerships and singular bold affirmations of mission, both of which reflect an expansive view of God’s mission in the world.” Among those “intentional partnerships” are Agape Table in its work providing meals and support to some of Winnipeg’s most marginalized people, and Hand in Hand with Haiti in its collaborative work with El Shaddai Church in Port-au-Prince. In 2013 one of those “singular bold affirmations” was a grant given to St Matthew’s Church, as they re-invented their church building to become the WestEnd Commons.
Purpose Statement: The Mission Fund of saint benedict’s table is a collective mechanism to participate in God’s mission outside our walls. Reflective of our mission and values, it is an act of risk-taking and faith, stewardship and discipleship, education and imagination.
We are now at the point in the year when it is time to invite your prayers for the process of grant disbursement, as well as to invite people to make recommendations for consideration. If you are aware of a ministry or program – whether local or beyond – which you think might benefit from one of our grants, please do contact us.
For more information on how this fund was used in 2013, and to see the full Terms of Reference, simply click here.