Q & A

Where did the Money to fund these innovative ministries come from:

In August of 2020, lay and clergy delegates of the Texas Annual Conference overwhelmingly adopted a new approach to our conference ministry in the Strategic Mapping Team Report. If you want to read that report, click here. Included in it was a recommendation for funds to support churches in thinking in new ways about their ministry. This is what it says on page 10 of the report:  

“The CLT Innovation Sub-Team will create space for imagining, testing, and introducing new ideas and models for making disciples of Jesus Christ. If this proposal is approved, we will recommend that CF&A budget annually $250,000 to invest in innovative new ministries across the Conference beginning in or before 2023. This Sub-Team will create guidelines for dispersing innovation funds, and be responsible for receiving and reviewing applications, and recommending them to the full CLT for approval”.

What do we mean by innovative?

The Innovation Sub-Team is excited at the opportunity to support those things that are directly related to the making of disciples of Jesus Christ. Further, the sub-team will be looking for those ministries that have as their goal connecting a church with people they are not reaching with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Innovation Sub-Team recognizes that innovation is highly contextualized. What may be a brand-new concept for reaching people with the gospel in one setting may be well established in another. We also want every idea and approach to be as carefully considered and well thought out as possible. But we also recognize the risk in innovation and that in any experimentation there is going to be failure. Finally, we would want to give priority to new paradigms for disciple making over the hiring of staff members or purchase of equipment. Some examples of innovation might include:   evangelistic efforts to reach young people; creating new faith communities of ethnic populations within a church’s mission field but not present in the church; ministries that build bridges between divided people.

What are the finances of the Innovation Funds?

            $250,000 is budgeted for the whole conference

            Actual amount will be based on the actual apportionment payout rate

            Maximum grant is $10,000

Who will award these funds?

Responsibility for awarding the funds is under the authority of the Conference Leadership Team (CLT). Within the CLT is a Sub-Group called the Innovation Team who will be charged with the task of determining the criteria by which funds will be awarded. The Innovation Team will make recommendations to the CLT for the awarding of grants. The Innovation Team is under the leadership of Bea Garza and Morris Matthis.  

When will funds be granted?

Grant requests can be made throughout the year.  Grants will be awarded twice a year. The first grant cycle will conclude before Annual Conference 2022.  The second grant cycle will conclude in the fall of 2022. The deadline for turning in grant requests for the fall cycle is October 24, 2022. Each cycle concludes with the Innovation Sub-Team bringing its recommendations to the CLT for approval.  To see the Grant Request form and to learn more about what is needed to submit a request, click here.        


What help will churches be given in preparing their grant requests?

The Innovation Sub-Team will offer Innovation Labs. The goal of the TAC Innovation Lab is to create a space for leaders to foster creative ideas that will shape thriving congregations for the present and future church. To learn more about the Innovation Labs and to register click here.