Churches that want to enhance or expand their welcoming and hospitality ministry during Advent can apply for Welcoming Seed Grants from the conference Communications Commission.
In preparation for the upcoming holiday season, the commission wants to award up to $500 in seed money to a church in each of the conference’s 11 districts. The grants are intended to assist churches located in “under-served” areas in creating a welcoming atmosphere.
Earlier this year, seed grants were awarded for the back-to-school season. The grants support The United Methodist Church’s welcoming and hospitality campaign. The well-known theme of the campaign is “Open hearts. Open minds. Open doors.” National television ads carrying the message air three seasons a year: Lent, back-to-school and Advent, when many churches traditionally have their greatest number of guests.
Churches that receive the seed money are encouraged to be creative in how they enhance or expand their welcoming and hospitality efforts. Past seed grant projects have included:
To be considered for a grant, a church must be located in an “under-served” area such as an isolated rural area, urban transitional area or economically disadvantaged area; must be committed to living out the “open hearts, open minds, open doors” theme, welcoming all who come; and want to enhance or expand its welcoming and hospitality ministry.
Seed grants must be used during the 2007 Advent period. Application deadline is Nov. 15.