Some of the first new worshiping communities to receive Seed Grants ($7,500) have been awarded Investment Grants ($17,500) by the Presbyterian Mission Agency.
Listed below, each ministry has made significant progress living into the definition of a new worshiping community (download in English or Spanish), with each receiving at least a 50 percent match grant from their synod, presbytery, and/or partner congregation.
- Presbyterian Immigrant Ministry (Fall River, MA) has a powerful prison ministry in the Presbytery of Southern New England. Its mission work of advocating for and ministering with hundreds of detained immigrants is based on these words from Matthew 25:35–36: “I was a stranger and you invited me in, . . . I was in prison and you came to visit me” (NIV).
- Iglesia Presbiteriana Cypress Lake(Peace River Presbytery) is ministering to 8,000 Spanish-speaking people who live within three miles of its partner congregation in Fort Myers, Florida. Prior to this worshiping community being formed, the Spanish-speaking folks who mow lawns, clean houses, and repair roofs had largely been “unseen” in the community and in denominational churches in the area. That is changing, as Cypress Lake held its first combined worship service (Spanish and English) on June 2.
- Hope for Life Chapel RV ministry in Huntington Beach, California, reaches out to people with money troubles or addictions or who are going through divorce, the loss of a job or home, or illness (requring them to be close to a nearby hospital) with the healing, redeeming love of Jesus Christ. Living in a fifth-wheel camper with a 10′ × 12′ chapel in the back, evangelist Tamara John is helping congregations in the Presbytery of Los Ranchos learn again what incarnational ministry (being the presence of Christ) is all about.
“The Mission Development Resources Committee that helps review and approve these grants is very impressed with these three ministries,” says Tim McCallister, associate for Mission Program Grants. “They have well-thought-out ministry plans and are reaching people who previously didn’t have access to a faith community.”
Vera White, associate for 1001, adds: “These first three Investment Grants reflect the face of the 1001 movement, which is proving to be younger and more multicultural than the PC(USA) as a whole. What great examples of Presbyterians responding to Jesus’ command to make disciples.”
New worshiping communities may apply for an Investment Grant six months after receiving a Seed Grant.