Foundation begins emergency grant ministry

e-Review Florida United Methodist News Service

Foundation begins emergency grant ministry

Feb. 6, 2007  News media contact: Tita Parham*
800-282-8011  Orlando {0619}

An e-Review Feature
By Suzanne McGovern**

Emergency grants from the Florida United Methodist Foundation will help churches cope with a variety of crises, including natural disasters, like the 2004 and 2005 hurricanes. Photo by the Rev. Dr. Larry Rankin. File Photo #04-0062. Originally accompanied e-Review Florida UMNS #0138.

LAKELAND — Churches experiencing a crisis or emergency now have another source to turn to for help — the Florida United Methodist Foundation.

The foundation recently launched an emergency grant ministry that will provide one-time, emergency grants to Florida Conference churches and agencies dealing with a crisis or emergency that significantly impairs their ministries.

The grants are intended to help a church overcome any unusual, non-recurring event or circumstance that may hamper its ability to fulfill its mission, according to Tom Marston, the foundation’s president. “The grants are intended to offset temporary emergencies that are beyond a church’s control,” he said.  “They are not intended to correct long-term declines in churches or ministries.”

Marston said the foundation had been considering developing an emergency grant program since the 2004 hurricane season, when it awarded $90,000 in grants to 11 churches that suffered severe hurricane damage. The grants were provided to help meet insurance deductibles that escalated after some churches suffered damages from more than one storm. 

Marston said funding for the grants is tied to the growth of the foundation during the previous fiscal year. The amount available will be set annually by the executive committee of the foundation’s board of directors and may vary from year to year. 

Grant applications will be accepted throughout the year, according to Marston, and will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Guidelines and application forms are available on the foundation’s Web site at


This article relates to Florida United Methodist Foundation/Disaster Response.

*Parham is managing editor of e-Review Florida United Methodist News Service.
**McGovern is associate vice president of planned giving /communications for the Florida United Methodist Foundation.

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