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The purpose of the Northern Great Lakes Endowment Funds shall be to enable the further growth of our church, its ministries, and stewardship opportunities apart from the general operation of the synod. The funds consist of a Perpetual Fund and a Special Gifts Fund. Special Gifts Funds shall be used in accordance with the specific directions associated with the gift while the Perpetual Fund shall distribute a minimum of five percent (5%) of the market value of its invested assets each year.
Current gifts and planned gifts are encouraged and accepted to support the mission of the endowment fund, local congregations and other ministries of the church. The synod is a member of a partnership between the Northern Great Lakes Synod, the Foundation of the ELCA, and the Northwest Synod of Wisconsin. Services to all members and congregations are provided through a gift planner located in our synod. Services include education and individual counseling on various gifting options and opportunity available to members. Assistance in the establishment of congregational mission endowment funds and policies relative to gifting is also provided. There is no cost to members or congregations for this service.
God is good! All the time! During the past decade over $200,000 has been distributed from our Synod Endowment Fund to a wide array of organizations and ministries: from our global partnership with the Eastern and Coastal Diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania to the Earthkeepers initiative for environmental stewardship; from the Lay School for Mission in its several campuses to pastoral educational debt reduction; from Transformational Ministry projects around our synod to a Campus ministry project at Bay College in Escanaba. In addition, our Synod continues to be a leader among the 65 synods of our church in providing financial assistance to our seminarians through the Endowment Scholarship Funds. Now, in 2015, $25,000 will be distributed to support the work of love in which we are engaged together.
Northern Great Lakes Synod
Endowment Fund Distribution
$10,000 Pastor’s Debt Retirement
Now in its thirteenth year, grants are made to rostered persons who have debt incurred while they were in seminary seeking their first theological degree. Last year, eighteen persons made application to the endowment fund and divided this money. Payments are made directly to the holder of the student debt. A grant of $600 per applicant is anticipated.
$4,000 Bay College Campus Ministry
Bay College has an innovative ecumenical ministry which all our Delta Conference congregations support. A part-time campus pastor serves and receives very modest funding. Our resources, along with several other Christian denominations, make this ministry happen. It is a Christian pastoral presence on campus – important work.
$4,000 Tanzania Projects
For more than twenty years our synod has been blessed with a tremendous companion synod relationship with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania – Eastern and Coastal Diocese. No congregational mission support (regular offerings) funds this ministry. All resources are collected for the purposes of funding specific projects. This grant will support this ministry paying related costs and expenses.
$2,000 Lay School for Mission
Now in six locations (St. Ignace, Minocqua, Hancock, Menominee, Gladstone, and Ishpeming), our Lay School trains over 80 adults per year in the work of the church. Students study scripture, church theology and history, pastoral care, and Christian education. This grant will support expenses for this ministry.
$5,000 Outreach Programs
As we come into our “Witness” year in our synod’s three year ministry of “Worship, Welcome and Witness,” a number of programs are being planned including “Outreach Grants” to congregations doing exciting community evangelism projects. This grant would partially fund this ministry.
2015 Total Distribution: $25,000