"I am delighted to see this work beginning to bear fruit, from seeds sown over the last two years, and expect a much larger harvest to come, "commented Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori. "Mission Funding is an invitation to the Church to think in larger and longer terms than our usual budget process Â– to cast a vision and plan for the mission of this Church throughout this century and beyond."
The Rev. Susan McCone, director of the Episcopal Church"s Mission Funding Initiative, announced the gifts on July 1 and expressed appreciation for the support that they represent.
"A $1 million pledge was received that will be fulfilled by a combination of future payments of cash and a bequest," McCone announced. "The other gift was for $150,000 from a donor who has agreed, as a first step, to fund a pilot project for The Fund for Congregational Development. Also received was a pledge of $100,000 which was /specifically given with the anticipation of additional gifts to follow."
The pilot program for the Fund for Congregational Development and Redevelopment calls for a small group of congregations geographically dispersed to be assessed to meet criteria for future funding.
As donor information is confidential, the names of the donors were not released.
The Mission Funding office was authorized by a resolution of Executive Council in 2005, in response to a 2003 General Convention resolution urging the Presiding Bishop and Executive Council to establish a Mission Funding office for the specific purpose of raising "major gifts." The Presiding Bishop has direct operating responsibility for Mission Funding, and Executive Council has "oversight" responsibility for the office"s policies and procedures.
The Episcopal Church, with 110 dioceses in 16 nations, is a member province of the worldwide Anglican Communion.
The Episcopal Church: www.episcopalchurch.org
Mission Funding Initiative: http://missionfunding.org/