Although 2003 was the last year for awarding congregational-outreach grants from the Marvin M. Schwan Charitable Foundation, the Synod office for that program is getting calls about how to apply for the grants in 2004.
“We simply have to inform these good people that the program drew to a close at the end of 2003, and there are no more grants to be given,” said Rev. Alger Tormoehlen, coordinator for the “Evangelism Outreach through Congregations” (EOC) grants that were distributed through LCMS District and Congregational Service (DCS).
Tormoehlen said that the Schwan Foundation “actually exceeded the $3 million in annual grants” that its trustees promised to Dr. A.L. Barry, the late LCMS president, to support the “Tell the Good News about Jesus” outreach initiative that Barry started.
The foundation committed a total of $3,539,821 in grants over four years to 566 Synod congregations, “to assist them in reaching out to the lost with the Gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ,” Tormoehlen said.
Those congregations are expected to complete their projects by June 30, 2006, “but it is my sincere hope and prayer that they will continue their outreach efforts,” Tormoehlen said.
He said that he was speaking for the DCS and for Synod President Gerald Kieschnick in “expressing our sincere thanks to the trustees of the Marvin M. Schwan Charitable Foundation for their funding of the EOC projects and to EOC committees who reviewed grant applications from 1,308 congregations.”