Sometimes an ABCUSA Matthew 25 Grant ends up helping more than just the targeted ministry need.
Members of First Baptist Church of Denver wanted to become more involved in ministry to the homeless and impoverished population surrounding its downtown location, but were uncomfortable with the small number of volunteers and dollars available. They decided to begin with a once-weekly lunch meal in partnership with Capitol Hill community Services. With help from an ABCUSA Matthew 25 Grant, they soon found themselves serving over 200 lunches every Monday. Not only did these neighbors receive much-needed food, but church members also received confidence in their ability to make a real difference in the lives of these brothers and sisters. They were encouraged enough to expand their ministry through partnership with Capitol Hill United Ministries, providing shelter for up to 20 homeless women the second and fourth Fridays of every month.
In less than a year after receiving the grant, FBC Denver can report serving over 1,600 meals and shelter for over 240 women (including dinner and breakfast.) The church, with its small congregation, has given over 300 hours of volunteer service to make this all possible.
As these ministries continue to thrive, Pastor Brian Henderson reports, “It’s fair to say that the miracle of the multiplication of loaves and fishes is being lived out yet again here in Denver. The ABCUSA Matthew 25 Grant gave encouragement and renewed energy to a congregation that was seeking to find its call to mission again. I suppose, as commercials say, this is priceless.”
Applications are now being accepted for the fall distribution of ABCUSA Matthew 25 Grant funding. The Matthew 25 Grant, sponsored by ABCUSA, is funded by a generous donor whose goal is to help meet the needs of “housing, feeding, education and health with regard to the less fortunate.” Ministries must be in relationship with American Baptist Churches to be eligible to apply. Awards for the Matthew 25 grant are made twice a year, in April and October, with application deadlines of March 1 and September 1. To view the guidelines and download the application form, click here.