The LCMS Office of National Mission (ONM) has announced a new grant opportunity to assist congregations in funding technology, software, equipment and training that will help them fulfill their mission to proclaim the Gospel to their members and the world.
Under the Esther 4:14 National Grant Program, approximately 100 grants of up to $1,500 each will be awarded to LCMS congregations seeking to advance their technological capacity in “such a time as this” (Esther 4:14). Grants may be used to fund:
- Technology (cameras, mixer boards, etc.);
- End-user equipment (tablets for shut-ins, etc.);
- Software or software subscriptions (Microsoft Teams, Zoom Pro accounts, editing software, etc.); and
- Other equipment or training to meet congregational needs.
Deaconess Maryann Hayter, manager of LCMS Grants Administration, said the grants are especially needed during a time when physical gatherings have been severely limited due to COVID-19.
“This grant is not the large-dollar award that would fund a state-of-the art film studio or other leading-edge professional technologies,” Hayter said. “However, we hope to encourage congregations to fill the need of the church to proclaim the Gospel in new ways and to creatively increase ‘people contact’ in a meaningful way during such times as these.”
In recent months, many LCMS churches have experienced an increased need for technology to carry out their mission. Such technology can be expensive, however, and many churches — especially smaller churches and those that were already struggling prior to the pandemic — have been limited in their efforts by financial concerns. This grant opportunity is designed to ease those limitations.
Grant recipients will be chosen by a grant committee, with preference given to congregations that:
- Demonstrate financial need;
- Show the ability to meet an unmet need with grant funds;
- Provide evidence of thoughtful planning; and
- Document the actual costs of desired equipment or technology.
Applications for Esther 4:14 grants will be accepted through April 5, with awards announced in May.
Visit lcms.org/esther4-14 for more information and to submit an online application.
Posted Feb. 5, 2021