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Conference committees and related organizations offer Northern Illinois churches the grants listed below.  Watch the NIC eNews for announcements of application openings and deadlines.


Connectional Ministries Grants

A small portion of the program budget from your apportionment dollars has been allocated to the the following three grants. They are offered to churches that are dreaming of new ways to engage the community, witness to the transformation of society, and experiment with new ways of being the church.

Creative Ministries Grant

The Creative Ministries Grant, coordinated by the program ministry members of the Annual Conference Shepherding Team, aims to encourage creative, collaborative ministry programs throughout the conference.  The grants support new, risk-taking initiatives  to impact your community and fulfill the mission of the church for the transformation of the world. This grant is designed to encourage experimentation, so "success" is not a necessary result.  The intention is to free your church to explore new ways for your community to learn and be transformed in mission and ministry.

Awards range from $1,500 to $3,000

Congregational Redevelopment Grant

Coordinated by the conference Congregational Development and Redevelopment Committee, this grant aims to encourage congregations to deepen their effectiveness in ministry. Grants will support projects that seek to increase engagement with faith or the church, help the congregation rediscover its unique call to mission in the community, and/or reimagine congregational life for greater fruitfulness in ministry. Projects may focus on specific areas of congregational life or mission, but should ultimately contribute to a larger vision of revitalizing the church’s mission and ministry. Grant priority will be given to churches that have set goals and have participated in conference training for redevelopment.  

Awards range from $1,500 to $3,000

Social Reform Grant

The Social Reform Grant, coordinated by the Conference Board on Church and Society, aims to provide financial empowerment to churches that have a passion and propose a plan for addressing a specific social justice-related concern. These funds can be used for both domestic and international social-justice work and must address the root causes of the injustice while extending God’s grace and mercy to all people. Primary consideration will be given to applicants that build partnerships among different ministries.

Grants range from $1,500 to $3,000.

For more information about these three grants, contact Rev. Fabiola Grandon-Mayer, director of connectional ministries.

Deadline to apply for these grants: Dec. 15

Creative Ministry, Congregational Redevelopment and Social Reform Grant Application

PACK Grant and Keagy Grant for Rural and Small-Town Churches

Martin Keagy, who had a heart for churches in small towns and rural areas, bequeathed a generous gift to the NIC to foster ministry opportunities in these regions. Every year the interest from this bequest funds two grants:

The PACK (Planned Act of Christian Kindness) Grant is meant to support churches' work to be a blessing to those in the neighboring community to show them the love of Jesus Christ. Awards range from $100 to $500. 

The Keagy Grant is for larger ministry projects that benefit the community and strengthen the church through evangelism, discipleship, justice, and compassion. Recipients are requested to present their ministries at the Keagy Festival held in fall so that churches can share what God did through them and encourage one another. Awards range from $500 to $5000.

For more information about these two grants, contact Rev. Libby Rutherford, chair of the Keagy Town and Rural Committee. 

Deadline to apply for PACK or Keagy Grant: March 31

Town and Rural PACK Application

Town and Rural Keagy Grant Application

United Methodist Volunteers in Mission Grant

This grant provides financial support for Northern Illinois Conference districts and local churches with a passion and plan for organizing, funding and leading youth and/or adult Mission Journey teams.

For more information, contact  Kris Aves  or Rev. Larry Dunlap-Berg

For summer 2024:  April 11, 2024
For fall 2024:         July 1, 2024

UM Volunteers in Mission Grant Application

Accessibility Grant

The Northern Illinois Conference Accessibility Committee awards small grants to churches working to make their buildings, worship services, and ministries more accessible. Complete the application linked below to share your project and funding needs, and we'll be in touch with you about available resources. Grants are accepted on a rolling basis; there is no deadline.

For more information, contact Rev. Violet Johnicker

Accessibility Grant Application

Midwest Methodist Foundation Grant

The foundation’s grants program annually offers funding up to $2,000 to local churches and church-related organizations as they develop new or expanded creative ministries.

Deadline: September 15

For more information, contact Rev. Chris Walters

Learn more on the Midwest Methodist Foundation web site

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