The Alabama-West Florida Conference Cohort Initiative is the recipient of a $10,000 Equipping the Local Church Grant from The Foundation for Evangelism
. Chosen from over 100 applications, this initiative was one of 31 grant proposals chosen for the 2022 inaugural grant cycle which awarded $230,000 in grant funding to small and medium sized churches or multiple churches working together.
Bill Kierce, AWF director of congregational development, was instrumental in securing this grant. “We are most grateful to the Foundation for Evangelism for acknowledging the need for cohorts in our conference,” Kierce said. “It has been a rewarding process to see the fruitful impacts of these cohorts, especially during the pandemic.” The Fresh Expression – Innovative Outreach Cohort is comprised of at least 30 churches with varying membership sizes in the Alabama-West Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church who each have a passion for evangelism in their local communities and are looking for new ways of connecting with their neighbors. Many of the churches in this cohort have less than 100 members in their congregation and are located in rural areas of our conference. The pastors and lay leaders of these congregations have expressed a desire to learn and implement new ways to share the Gospel with their communities.
“The Foundation for Evangelism is looking forward to partnering with the AWF Cohort Initiative as they implement their project throughout the coming year. Seeing clergy and laity working together to invite their community into life-transforming relationship with Jesus Christ is exciting,” said Rev. Dr. Heather Lear, Vice President for Grant Administration.
About The Equipping the Local Church Grant
The Foundation for Evangelism’s Equipping the Local Church Grant has categories for $5,000, $7,500, and $10,000 awarded to small and medium church congregations, or clusters of churches working together, in a Wesleyan-tradition denomination. Selected applicants must show how the grant can launch an experiment or initiative to share the Gospel, tell their faith stories, and invite others into a relationship with Jesus. For more information about The Foundation for Evangelism, visit foundationforevangelism.org.