Spring 2011

Jubilee Ministry evolving as we embrace collaboration

No question about it, Jubilee Ministry is changing.

As resources become tighter and demands grow greater, the church is doing everything in its power to make every dollar spent and every hour invested go farther and accomplish more. That’s true whether the investment is in administration, technology, education, liturgical resources, advocacy or outreach.

One of the ways the church-affiliated ministries that deal with domestic poverty are responding is to collaborate however and whenever we can. You saw it last year when Jubilee Ministry partnered with National Episcopal Health Ministries and Episcopal Community Services in America to sponsor “Called to Serve: The Episcopal Church Responds to Domestic Poverty” conference in Newark. You saw it again in this past grant funding cycle when some of the Jubilee Ministry grants targeted particular summer programs and the church wide Green Faith collaboration initiative. Jubilee Ministry has partnered with our Office of Native American Ministries to offer Asset Based Community Development workshops and White Bison training.

But in truth, networking with other organizations to promote justice is just one of the nine functions of Jubilee Ministry for which we were created. 

You’re going to see more and more of this in the future. One very exciting project you’ll hear more about in coming months involves “Asset Mapping.” That’s an effort to count and assess all the outreach ministries that our various Episcopal-affiliated agencies, ministries and congregations are involved in. We know Episcopalians are doing a lot good things. Sometimes they do them under the banner of Jubilee Ministry. Sometimes they do them under the banner of Episcopal Community Services in America or National Episcopal Health Ministries. Sometimes under the banner of Episcopal Relief and Development or the United Thank Offering. Likewise, we do our advocacy under banners such as the Episcopal Public Policy Network or the Episcopal Network for Economic Justice. And almost always, our ministry happens under a banner of congregational outreach. Truth is, we have lots of banners out there.

It’s a massive task, but we’re going to try to answer important capacity questions about what services are being delivered and where, by whom, to whom, and how many Episcopal outreach dollars and Episcopal volunteer hours are being expended in the process. And in the process, we hope to be better able to direct time, energy and resources to areas of greatest need in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible.

And you – as Diocesan Jubilee Officers, as Jubilee Ministry leaders and volunteers, and church officers – will be a part of this project. Stay tuned.

Blessings to all of you,
Chris Johnson,

Social and Economic Justice Officer

Nation's DJOs to gather in Appalachia in July

Diocesan Jubilee Officers, mark your calendars for July 6-9 in the Diocese of Lexington, Ky. Those are the dates of our upcoming DJO training event, which will be at Cathedral Domain Camp and Conference Center . Regardless of whether you’re a new DJO or a veteran, we want you to come. You’ll be receiving details in coming weeks about making reservations, obtaining scholarships to attend, transportation options and a more detailed agenda. That’s all to come. For now, just think about what you need to do to be able to join us. There is no better way to invest in the development of your diocesan Jubilee Ministry networks than to join in this training with your colleagues.

The training event will include workshops, worship and time for fellowship and networking. Just as importantly, it will also include immersion in the Appalachian culture and a workday. We’ll spend our first evening together learning about Appalachia and the history of the region. Deacon Gordon Brewer, executive director of Episcopal Appalachian Ministries, has made arrangements for us to spend the following day at St. Timothy’s Outreach Center in Barnes Mountain, Ky., a ministry that has been serving one of the poorest areas in America since 1982.

On Friday and Saturday, we’ll spend the day focusing on practical topics to help DJOs do their jobs better. We’re still planning just what topics to focus on, and DJOs can help us determine that - and some other things - by filling out a brief survey ASAP. 

The DJO survey is found here . It’s short and won’t take you more than a minute or so to complete. In it, we’re asking your input regarding a) what would be most useful to you at the DJO training, b) what areas you would most like to see Jubilee grant funding made available for in the coming year and c) what you think of Jubilate, and how we can improve it.

Please take a moment to complete this task. Your input will help guide our planning teams to be more responsive to what you need and want.


Nineteen dioceses receive initiative grants

Nineteen dioceses applied for and received $1,000 Jubilee Ministry development grants during the last round of grant funding.

“Every diocese that applied got a grant,” said Chris Johnson, program officer for Social and Economic Justice. “I’m just sorry that more dioceses didn’t send in applications. We had set aside enough funding to fill 50 such grant requests. When so few applied, we transferred the remaining funds into other grant categories,” he said.

To receive the $1,000 grants, dioceses simply had to submit a one-paragraph proposal for how they would use the funds to further the work of Jubilee, then obtain the signature of the bishop. The proposals range from reimbursing travel expenses to hosting Jubilee education workshops for church leaders to expanding some successful programs housed at Jubilee centers.

Johnson hopes that by seeing what others are doing to promote their diocesan Jubilee work, dioceses that didn’t apply this year may get ideas for the future. For a breakdown of what the grant-winning dioceses propose to do in 2011, click here. 


"Just Society" grants reward local ideas, projects

Twenty-four Jubilee Ministries have received “Building a Just Society” grants of $2,500. The grants, awarded to programs that have emerged from grassroots community development efforts, are part of the church’s ongoing commitment to supporting initiatives that bubble up from local communities rather than those developed by far-off experts or bureaucracies.

In the parlance of the church, that's referred to as "subsidiarity." Basically, it means doing as much on the local level as possible, while doing only those things at the corporate level that can best augment and support local initiatives. 

Take a look at the 2011 grant winners, along with a brief summary of how they will use the funds, by clicking here. 


Pantries and gardens battle 'food deserts'

Twenty-eight Jubilee Ministries received $750 Health-and-Nutrition grants this winter to fund projects ranging from expanding community gardens to stocking food pantries to staging a health and nutrition fair.

The grants, totaling $21,000, are intended to help ministries address the nutritional challenges facing poor people who live in “food deserts,” those areas where no full-service grocery stores operate and residents must travel long distances to obtain fresh produce or else try to find healthy choices on convenience store shelves.

Here’s a look at how the grant-winning Jubilee Ministries will put these small grants to use this year.


From the 'How to' file: Tapping into federal funds to expand food and nutrition programs

While the Jubilee Ministry grants available this year for congregations or other ministries working on food and nutrition projects were quite small, other agencies can provide substantial grant money or other assistance. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, in particular, is anxious to work with faith-based organizations seeking to create or expand programs to help feed the hungry.

“People think the USDA must be just helping farmers, but it’s much broader than that,” said Max Finberg, director of the USDA’s Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. “The USDA helps people every day in every way, and that’s not an exaggeration.”

Click here for some hands-on ideas and toolkits for tapping into a variety of federal grants to expand faith-based food and nutrition programs. 


Focus on ministry: Refugee Network provides critical aid and advocacy in San Diego

The Episcopal Refugee Network of San Diego (formerly St. Luke's Refugee Network) is a Jubilee Ministry serving those who came to San Diego as refugees from many countries. There are estimated to be over 90,000 residents of San Diego who came here legally as refugees. Of those, at least half are not literate in their own language or English, and do not speak or understand English well. For some languages, such as Shan – a group of people who live primarily in Myanmar - there are no English speakers.


Read about how this ministry serves this vulnerable population - and about the possibility for collaboration with other Jubilee Ministries who work with similarly disadvantaged groups. 


Rooted in Worship: "Where there is despair, hope" an online curriculum ideal for Lent

Four priests and two laypeople from the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Ohio have written a curriculum to equip congregations to apply Scripture, prayer, and home-grown case studies to their community ministry.

Called “Where there is Despair, Hope,” the online curriculum provides five sessions ideal for congregational study during Lent – or any time. The curriculum grew out of the Bishop’s challenge to the board of the  Episcopal Community Services Foundation in Cincinnati to help churches root community ministry in Christian formation.

Click here for more information about the curriculum. 


Mark your calendar

Episcopal Community Services in America annual conference

April 27-29, 2011

St. Mark's Episcopal Church

San Antonio, TX


"Anglicanism Remixed: Embracing the Other, Our Traditions and the Future"

May 5-6

East Syracuse, N.Y.

Sponsored by Province II

Featured speaker and conference leader is the Rev. Stephanie Spellers, Cox Fellow and Minister for Radical Welcome at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Boston.



National Episcopal Health Ministries Seasons of Health Ministry conference

May 19-21

Mercy Retreat Center

Burlingame, CA (near San Francisco)

Learning opportunities for all, but especially for those involved in health ministry and parish nursing.



Planting the Seeds for a Parish Health Ministry

June 3-4

Church of the Holy Spirit

Harleysville, PA


Training event for Diocesan Jubilee Officers

July 6-9

Lexington, Ky

See the above item in the newsletter for more information

Everyone, Everywhere 2011

Oct. 13-16

YMCA of the Rockies

Estes Park, Colo.

A conference for congregations, dioceses, networks and individuals active in the global and domestic mission of The Episcopal Church.


Focus on creation: Energize your Ministry, Become a Green Leader and Save Money

Since last fall, the Episcopal Church has partnered with GreenFaith to offer tuition subsidies for Episcopal churches to enroll in the Green Certification Program, a unique 2-year environmental leadership program designed specifically for houses of worship. And the evidence is mounting: Congregations engaging in this holistic program are finding that they engage and energize their members and care for Creation, while also reducing their operating expenses through energy conservation and more.

Read more  about this program and how your ministry can access Jubilee Ministry grant money to participate.


Jubilee Ministry in the news

Street Church brings church to Franklin Square Park, a story on the street ministry of Church of the Epiphany in Washington, D.C., Dec. 22 in Street Sense

Jubilee Center volunteers come together to help working poor, a story on the Jubilee Center in Midland Texas, Jan. 24, in the Midland Reporter-Telegram

Episcopal City Mission grants fuel social justice work in Massachusetts, a Jan. 13 feature on this Boston-based ministry by Episcopal News Service.

Left paralyzed, shooting victim sees second chance, a Jan. 3 story in the Sierra Vista Herald/Bisbee Daily Review highlighting the work of the Naco Wellness Center, a Jubilee Ministry in Arizona. The Center is one of our "Building a Just Society" grant winners.

Sunday service: Tulsans help feed needy, homeless, a Feb. 7 article in the Tulsa World on the feeding ministry at Trinity Episcopal Church in Tulsa.

Casper Episcopal parish becomes warm shelter from the stormy blast, a Feb. 3 piece by Episcopal News Service on the winter-time efforts of St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Casper, Wyo. 

St. Francis Center works tirelessly to find homes, jobs for the homeless, a Jan. 9 article in the Denver Post about Denver's St. Francis Center, one of our charter Jubilee Ministries. 



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