Cultivate and expand your skills and resource your ministry with a grant from the Michigan Conference Board of Laity. Apply before October 1, 2021.
Associate Director for Lay Leadership Development
Opportunities to improve leadership and communications skills and resources for faith formation and anti-racism are abundant. A person can find something for everyone right now. Some are free and online; others are not. You’ve probably had your eye on one or more being offered. There’s a roadblock, though. Your church might not have the funds to cover continued education for the laity. That happens. It’s a real thing, and the Michigan Conference Board of Laity wants to help. A Board of Laity Training and Resources Grant is now available! We want to help cultivate and expand your skills and get some resources into your hands!
Who is eligible to apply?
Laypersons affiliated with churches and ministries in the Michigan Conference of The United Methodist Church.
What is the maximum amount?
A layperson/church may receive up to $300.
How might the grant be used?
This grant is for resources and leadership training events that cannot be funded through local church budgets. Some possibilities include (not an exhaustive list):
- Bishop’s Challenge ABAR resources for small groups/churches – Bishop Bard, during the 2021 Annual Conference, issued the following challenge: “I invite every Michigan United Methodist congregation to engage in a study in the coming year dealing with intercultural competence, racism, or racial reckoning.” This is a list of resources for that purpose.
- General Commission on Religion & Race resources – Premium resources from the general agency on topics such as You Are Here: First Steps for White Christians on Race and Racism and Implicit Bias: What We Don’t Think We Think.
- Discipleship Ministries eLearning course – Premium resources from the general agency that will enrich your faith life and ministry. If you need CEU credit, courses have a fee. Topics include Basics of Faith Formation and Disciple Living Generously.
- UMC Guidelines for Leading Your Congregation — These booklets are tools that get new leaders off to a good start and are a reference resource for all. Each booklet includes the basic “job description” for the leader and practical “how-to” information important to implementing ministry effectively.
- REACH Summit or Network Group – The REACH Summit is designed to move, touch, and inspire. Engage with dynamic speakers, get your hands dirty trying out new ideas in workshops. The end of the REACH Summit marks the start of REACH Network Groups. Each group offers focused efforts with other interested church leaders.
- Amplify Media Subscription – Amplify Media is a streaming service allowing churches unlimited video access to discover, customize, and share diverse resources that encourage deeper discipleship and equip churches to pursue their mission with greater impact.
- Lay Servant Ministry Courses – Lay Servant Ministries is one of the significant lay leadership development programs available within the United Methodist connection. Through this system of equipping and empowering, lay servants have the opportunity to grow as disciples of Jesus Christ who then go and make other disciples.
- Leadership Institute of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection offers inspiration, practical ministry tools, and proven strategies to strengthen your church and your own leadership.
- Small group study materials – Looking for small group ideas? Cokesbury has many studies available. Check out the webpage for ideas.
Grant applications must be received by October 1 or until all available funds are distributed. Applications will be reviewed as they are received and should be submitted by a layperson.
The above summary is merely a list of suggestions. So, if you have another idea, GO FOR IT! Maybe there is a study you’ve wanted to do with your small group, and funding was an issue. Maybe you’re interested in attending a weekend retreat in 2022, and the entire cost is unaffordable. The Board of Laity and Lay Leadership Development in Michigan wants to equip and connect however we can.
Don’t forget to check out the Lay Leadership Toolbox for resources as well.