Reading the Budget
The 2013-2015 budget passed by General Convention this summer contains some major shifts in funding for Young Adult and Campus Ministries. (We invite you to follow along with that budget on page 15 of this document) First of all, the funding for both young adult and campus ministries (previously two distinct budget headings) have been combined with Youth Ministries, Children’s Ministries, Older Adult Ministries and Lifelong Formation under the heading “Formation and Vocation Ministries” (line 63). This heading falls under the second mark of mission, To Teach, Baptize and Nurture New Believers. This move was made in order to encourage coordination and collaboration between these age-specific networks as we strive to bridge the gap. Funding in this area is divided into seven lines:
Episcopal Generations/Lifelong Formation – this line is primarily focused on developing intergenerational resources and ministries and bridging networks. Of particular interest within this line is the transition from youth to young adult and campus ministries. Some funds will go toward the Chaplain’s Conference in 2013, however new funding models and expectations will need to be explored for subsequent years.
Formation and Vocation Networks – This line will be used to facilitate our continually improving internal communications within both the young adult and campus ministries networks. This will include new web-based resources and connections, the continued work of the Provincial Coordinators for Campus Ministry, the creation of a new Young Adult Ministries Council, and a leadership team comprised of both students and young adults.
Campus Ministry Grants – This line will be used through a grants-based program to continue to strengthen campus ministries on the local level. Due to a General Convention resolution, these grants will have a preference for community college based models for ministry.
Events and Gatherings – This line will help fund the Young Adult Festival at General Convention in 2015 as well as a churchwide gathering for students during the course of the triennium. Additional funds will go toward regional and topical gatherings for young adults, students, chaplains and young adult ministers.
Other departmental costs/Staff Costs – This line makes the four staff persons of the Formation and Vocations team at the Episcopal Church Center and their diverse set of skills more readily available to all of our networks.
Several current projects of the office are not explicitly funded in the current triennium, including the Why Serve conference, Peer Ministry Training, and the Episcopal Leadership Institute for Young Adults. We will engage in continued discernment with our partners and the network at large as we explore new ways for this work to continue.
Additional funding has been made available to ministries with young adult in two other lines of the budget. Line 79 includes one million dollars to be allocated by Executive Council for opportunities for young adults to engage in Mission Mark 3, to respond to human need in loving service. This line will fund the continued work of the Young Adult Service Corps, a program our office oversees in collaboration with the office for Mission Personnel, along with new initiatives targeted at specific subgroups of young adults. In addition, Line 81 allocates a one-time $200,000 grant to the Episcopal Service Corps as an independent network of domestic internships sites.
Though the budget represents significant cuts in program funds, it does maintain current staffing and looks toward new ways of engaging in our common mission. We look forward to our continued discernment of how best to make use of the resources made available to us in partnership with Executive Council and with all of you in our network.