Vitality Grant applications submitted by congregations for 2020 funding will be reviewed by a new committee appointed by the Congregations Commission, announced the Rev. Andrea Mysen, director of ministries. The group expects to announce grant awards in December.
The new committee’s members include Marvin Hill of the Antiracism Commission; Silvia Herrera of the Hispanic Affairs Committee; the Rev. Peg William of Bishop and Trustees; and the Rev. Greg Millikin, a member of Diocesan Council and the Congregations Commission planning team. The Rev. Ellen Ekevag, associate for ministries on the bishop’s staff, will support the process and Mysen and the Rev. Kara Wagner-Sherer, former co-chair of the Congregations Commission, will consult with the group.
According to Mysen, the new grant review committee has been appointed to expand the perspectives with which grants are evaluated. “We want to have multiple lenses that can inform our decision making,” she said. “I am especially grateful to have a chair of the Antiracism Commission in the conversation to help us be proactive in adopting antiracist practices.”
The separate grants committee will also allow the Congregations Commission to focus its time on supporting the diocese’s growing College for Congregational Development (CCD) program, especially by expanding its training program and consulting network.
A planning team, including Millikin, is working on the commission’s new structure and charge. “We’re trying to ask larger questions about how we equip our churches, how we launch a more proactive platform for CCD trainings, and how we can deepen our consulting network to do more hands-on work with churches,” said Mysen.