The diocesan mission strategy encourages our diocesan community to “embrace brave change” through reimagining congregations, building relationships and engaging our world. The Mission Strategy Committee wants to help with that in a real and tangible way, recognizing that while congregations, networks and organizations in the diocese may dream big ideas for how to do the work of Christ in new and creative ways, budgets often don’t have room to try things that may or may not work.
That’s where “Wicked Good Idea” Microgrants come in.
This grant initiative invites congregations, networks and organizations in the diocese to brainstorm ideas about how to try something new in their ministry context in support of our shared mission strategy. (Need a refresher on our commitments? Find the mission strategy here.)
Perhaps your congregation wants to place a little free library on your grounds and stock it with inspirational books. Maybe you want to begin an interreligious conversation group on Zoom, or host a dialogue on dismantling racism. While our ideas of church have shifted somewhat in the current time, our mission work continues, and we hope congregations, networks and organizations continue to think creatively about how to do that. (Please note that technology needs for virtual service streaming are not eligible for funding.)
Once you have an idea in mind, you can apply for a grant of $500-$2,000 to make it a reality and see what happens.
The Mission Strategy Committee will review your application, looking to see the connection of your idea with the goals of our mission, the feasibility of the idea and the way it can help us live more fully as disciples of Jesus. In 2021, a total of $15,000 is set aside for individual grants from $500 to $2,000. Applications will be received on a rolling basis and awarded on a monthly basis, contingent on the information received in the compliance report. Grants will be awarded in the calendar year until funds are exhausted.
To be eligible for grants or loans administered by the Diocese of Massachusetts, congregations must be in compliance with basic reporting requirements. Please review these standards prior to applying:
- Parochial Report (2020 report due March 1, 2021)
- Annual Audit (2020 audit due Sept. 1, 2021; if award is prior to Sept. 1, the 2019 audit suffices)
- Annual Leadership Report including Safe Church Audit (2021 report due March 27, 2021)
- Current on payments (<90 days in arrears) annual assessment, diocesan loans, clergy pension, health premiums
Congregations that have not met these requirements will not be issued award funds until they demonstrate they are in compliance.
At the conclusion of your project, the committee will ask you to submit what you learned in the process; what worked and what didn’t; and to hear—and see in pictures or video—your story!
Questions may be directed to the Mission Strategy Committee at email@example.com.