!Alert
Cookies

Cookies are in use to track visits to our website: we store no personal details.

Grant Applications: Spring 2021

Grant Applications: Spring 2021

Instructions for Applications:
Grant Cycle for Fiscal Year 2022

As a community of faith communities in the Episcopal tradition, a central mission of the Convocation is to direct its collective efforts toward developing opportunities for growth in spirituality, Christian service, formation, and stewardship. While the Convocation has relatively limited financial resources, the elected leaders of the Convocation are dedicated to the objective of directing our work toward the development of a network of knowledge-sharing encompassing all our congregations. One way in which we do this is by using the resources entrusted to the Convocation to provide grants that fund creative initiatives aligned with our strategic plan. The initiatives we seek to support will

Propose innovative or creative ways of helping our congregations to grow spiritually, educationally, or in Christian service

Articulate a clear theory of change (what is the difference our initiative will make?)

Describe a coherent approach toward making that change (How will we make that difference?), and

Outline a plan for evaluating the results (What change did we actually make?)

 The Convocation’s leadership recognizes that opportunities for specific projects or special or unexpected needs may arise in congregations, and so the budget includes a provision for grants. The main purpose of these grants is to support development of our mission, by enabling congregations to carry out a project they might not otherwise be able to do; and offering a network of innovative thinking, knowledge and experience of benefit elsewhere in the Convocation.

Grant Categories

1. General grants

General Grants are for those applicants who envision projects that are directed toward one or more of the areas of the Convocation’s 2017 Strategic Plan. Specifically, we seek projects that will model ways for communities of the Convocation to:

Become vibrant congregations, which more fully proclaim and live the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Develop new communities, where possible in association with ecumenical partners, including indigenous language churches.

Foster ecumenical and interfaith relationships and projects.

Be progressive and prophetic Christian witnesses to secular post-Christian European societies.

Engage European policy-makers, along with other churches, in the promotion of justice, peace and the integrity of creation.

 

The committee will also consider grant requests for capital improvements to buildings, but looks for an understanding of how the improvements proposed directly relate to the mission and ministry of the congregation.

In evaluating grant proposals, the Committee will look for a clear, compelling answer to the following questions:

What is the difference we want to make? What is the question we are grappling with to which the project we propose is an answer?

How will we make that difference? In other words, what is our theory of change? How will the project we propose offer an answer to the challenge we have identified?

How will we evaluate the results of our work? How will we assess what difference our project actually made? This need not be something quantitative; it could be a change in depth of engagement by members of a congregation in a ministry offered to the wider community, a change in perspectives or attitudes observed by surveys conducted before and after a project, or other measures.

How will we share the insights we have gained from this project and the lessons we have learned in ways that will benefit the wider Convocation?

How is the congregation prepared to support the work of the project proposed, both financially and in other ways?

2. Exceptional grants

Realizing that congregations can at times encounter unusual and unforeseen circumstances, applications for Exceptional Grants will also be considered that assist individual missions or parishes directly, but that do not necessarily contain an explicit benefit for other parishes. It is hoped, however, that the congregations that receive these one-time awards will reflect on broader learning that might be gleaned from their experience.

Such grants will be made to cover a deficit in the upcoming year’s budget resulting from extraordinary costs in the current year that the congregation is unable to cover, but only after all other means of funding have been exhausted. It is also expected that the congregation will demonstrate a commitment to strong fiscal planning. Normally, foreseeable events (for example, building maintenance, the cost of a rector search, or provision for a rector’s sabbatical) will not be covered.

 

3. Digital Ministry Enrichment Grants

One result of the pandemic was the creation of new communities connected to us through virtual worship, fellowship, and formation initiatives. The bishop and the Council of Advice have identified as a priority in the years to come encouraging our congregations to continue to nurture these communities and to see them as organically connected to their ministries going forward.

The Convocation has therefore again created a separate pool of funds to encourage the further development of digital ministry among our congregations. Awards will typically be of amounts up to €1,000, and are intended to help congregations reach “stretch goals” for the development and strengthening of digital ministry. (Depending on the project you have in view, you may need to find additional funds from other sources.) Examples of what might be supported include:

Systems to assure high-speed wifi connectivity in the church

Equipment to improve video and audio capture in the church

Display screens for the worship space

Training opportunities for digital worship leaders

Connecting online giving opportunities to a congregation’s digital presence

We invite all congregations in the Convocation to submit proposals to help strengthen their digital ministry capabilities.

Note that Digital Ministry Enrichment Grants are applied for by means of a separate form, found at this link.

In evaluating these proposals, we will be especially attentive to how the proposed project will help congregations integrate virtual and physical communities; expand the reach of their ministries to new communities; and strengthen their ability to encourage support of both service and stewardship in the church.

4. Restricted Grants

The Convocation benefits from the interest of two funds that are restricted in the following ways.

The Germany Trust Fund: Monies from this fund can be used only for mission in Germany. Currently, the total available is approximately € 3,000 annually.

The Rowthorn Fund: Monies from this fund are intended for grants and activities for youth or new mission projects. Currently, the total amount available for grants is approximately € 5,000 annually.

These grants should fulfill the same criteria as one or the other of the first two categories.

 

Grant Request Procedures

Grant applications must be submitted to the Finance Committee, in care of the Convocation Office, 23 Avenue George V, 75008 Paris, France. Applications may be submitted via e-mail to

All grant applications must be received by May 7, 2021.

All grant applications must include:

The completed Grant Request Form:

The form for General, Restricted, and Exceptional Grants is found here (editable .doc file)

The form for Digital Ministry Enhancement is found here (Google Form)

Grant Project Learning Report (either in Google Form or editable Word .doc) for any grant received the previous year (if applicable)

A Brief Report (1-3 Paragraphs) for an ongoing grant in the current year

Year-to-date Financial Statement for the current year.

Grant Expenditure Report for any grant received the previous year (if applicable), with all required receipts, etc.

Note that the Parochial Report for the previous year of the administering congregation must have been submitted for the grant to be awarded.

All documents listed are found on the Convocation website. Any incomplete applications will not be considered.

Reporting Requirements for Grant Recipients

Each grant recipient is encouraged to assign leadership and responsibility to a person (Grant Officer) who will oversee the project and also be a liaison to the Council of Advice. This may be the Rector, a member of the Vestry or Bishop’s Committee, or another member of the congregation. The Council of Advice will assign one member to liaise directly with each Grant Officer to offer support in the submission of grant applications and in the implementation of the project. Note that the Council of Advice has recently agreed to a policy under which no grants of the Convocation will be made directly to individuals.

In order that the Convocation as a whole might learn from every Euro spent, each grant recipient, whatever the category of the grant, is required to complete a Grant Project Learning Report as well as a Grant Expenditure Report for grants received in the previous year. The Council of Advice will collate and summarize the Grant Project Learning Reports for presentation at the Convocation Convention, in order to share best practices with the broader Convocation and to stimulate further creative approaches to ministry and mission.