Foundation Concludes New Way Grant Program

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Wisconsin churches have had to adapt and try new things to continue serving their communities. Under the Wisconsin United Methodist Foundation’s (WUMF) mission to help “meet the needs” of statewide churches, the organization recognized a need for camera equipment, streaming software, staff training, and other items that probably were not included in annual budgets. WUMF wanted to reach out in hope and love to local congregations as they created or continued their online presence by offering a special New Way Grant to most who completed a one-page application.

“We were honored and blessed to be able to give out 321 grants totaling $310,045.80,” said WUMF president Eric Churan. “This means we have sent checks totaling $110 to $1,000 to 71 percent of the United Methodist Churches in Wisconsin.”

Churches responded positively. “Thank you very much for the opportunity to apply. It caused us to sit down and dream into the possibilities, rather than work with only what we can,” said Reverend Lowe of Kingston United Methodist Church in Montello, Wis.
“Thank you. Our church has jumped in with both feet in an effort to provide meaningful online worship. As we continue to build this online presence, we realize there are many aspects of technology that we did not originally budget for this year. We will continue quality online worship once we are back in the building. The streaming and recording equipment, along with extra licenses, is all new to us,” said Jamie Day, the administrative director for Sugar River United Methodist Church in Verona, Wis.

WUMF is happy to report the results of this successful special grant. As we all deal with the unknown of the COVID-19 pandemic, we want you to know we are praying for all of you, our sisters and brothers, during these uncertain times.