The Department of Evangelization of the Orthodox Church in America recently announced that five Church Planting Grants have been awarded to fledgling missions for 2004.
Church Planting Grants, funded through donations to the OCA’s annual Mission Appeal, are awarded to missions for the purpose of funding the ministry of full-time clergy. Qualifying missions receive $15,000 per year toward this end and must match this amount from their own resources. Grants may be renewed for a three-year period.
Grant recipients for 2004 include the following communities:
- Archangel Gabriel Mission, Ashland, OR, was awarded its third grant in as many years. The mission has seen strong growth and stability and serves faithful in one of the Pacific Northwest’s fastest growing areas.
- Receiving its first grant is Saint Athanasius Mission, Nicholasville, KY. The only OCA parish in the state, Saint Athanasius’ has shown tremendous growth during the past year.
- Saint John of Kronstadt Mission, Lincoln, NE, is also the only OCA community in the state. Its rapid and consistent growth has made it possible for the mission’s faithful to “seed” other missions in the region.
- Saint Herman of Alaska Mission, Port Townsend, WA, was awarded its first one-year grant as the community transitions its priest to full time ministry.
- Also receiving its first grant is All Saints of Alaska-Saint Arseny Mission, Victoria, BC, which was recently established in this rapidly growing region.
“The Orthodox Church in America was able to award these grants due to the success of the 2003 Mission Appeal,” according to the Rev. Eric Tosi, Chairman of the OCA Department of Evangelizaiton. “Each year, gifts received in response to the appeal are earmarked for Planting Grants, for the support of priests in growing missions. The number of missions that can be supported is directly based on the appeal, and the department would like to increase the number of missions receiving grants in the coming years.”
Missions interested in applying planting grants are urged to visit the OCA web site, where they will find applications and other pertinent information.
Deadline for applying for a 2005 grant is August 2004.
For information about the work of the Department of Evangelization and to support the 2003 Mission Appeal which funds the Church Planting Grants, log on to the Department’s website.