The purpose of the SEEDS OF FAITH (SOF) Fund is to be very intentional and effective with our resources to:
1. birth new ministries through church plantings throughout the Atlantic Northeast District.
2. re-birth/revitalize ANE congregations that are about to close.
3. encourage leadership growth.
4. support congregations who have demonstrated that the growth or expansion of the congregation depends on an investment from the District.
1. All disbursements shall be in furtherance of the religious and/or charitable purpose of ANE and, in the case of organizations, shall be made only to churches or congregational and ANE sponsored organizations having a non-profit tax exempt status for legitimate tax-exempt purposes.
Preference shall be given to grant requests which fall within one or more of the following categories, all of which are to be considered on an equal basis.
1. Brethren Related – grant requests that originated from, or are sponsored by, the Church of the Brethren congregations.
2. “Seed” Funds – Providing initial funding to allow time and energy to be focused and invested for a successful church plant.
(a) Requests to assist in church planting or in opening and establishing new areas of mission or service, including education and training;
(b) Requests for “seed money” to assist with start¬up costs of new ministries;
(c) Requests which propose innovative approaches to ministry;
3. Church Expansion – Providing support for those churches who have demonstrated , or are demonstrating, growth and the expansion of their ministries.
4. Education – Developing leadership skills and practical tools
(a) Requests which will cultivate or nurture the understanding or practice of Christian stewardship in its various aspects;
(b) Requests which will strengthen educational ministries and opportunities.
5. Partnership Funds – Partnering with ANE Congregations to affect new church plants or church requests which are “inter-Brethren” in nature in that they are supported by, or will foster cooperation among, two or more Church of the Brethren groups or agencies.
6. Assessment – Evaluating personnel and locations as to their compatibility with the mission, vision, and goals for a successful church plant.
LIMITATION FOR FUNDING
1. Limited funds may be available to underwrite an initial facility need of a new church plant. However, it is not a primary focus of the fund.
2. Since this SOF Fund cannot fund every worthy endeavor, its resources should be directed to those areas meeting its policies and guidelines and where support will have the greatest positive impact. In general, the following should NOT be considered for funding:
(a) Budget, maintenance or operating expense requests.
(b) Loans to individuals.
(c) Fellowship and travel grants which are primarily for personal benefit or enrichment.
(d) Capital fund or endowment campaigns, except that a one-time grant to a capital fund or endowment campaign of a Brethren denominational group may be considered.
(e) Organizations that support political candidates or promote specific political philosophy.
(f) Organizations that influence, promote, or attempt to initiate legislation, except for Brethren or related organizations involved in influencing, promoting or attempting to initiate legislation of historical or long-standing concern to the Church of the Brethren.
(g) Organizations whose objectives and/or strategy would violate the basic tenets of the Brethren faith.
APPLICATION IS REQUIRED
Contact District Office or call 717-367-4730