Know a Seminary Graduate? Want to Gift Them With a Check Out of the Blue?

check

My title pretty much gives away the goal of this post.
Yes, I am going to make an ask.

Intentional support for seminarians can create a meaningful ripple effect.
It can initiate an economy of giving,
launching gifts of
time,
discipleship,
innovation,
justice,
service,
spiritual formation,
connection,
healing,
solidarity, and
advocacy
into the world.

This month, students are graduating from seminaries and divinity schools all across the country. These institutions of higher learning are affiliated with a variety of church denominations.

I wonder, do you personally know a graduating seminarian?
Would you consider gifting them with a check out of the blue?

As you likely know, these graduates are completing their studies at a time when many congregations are experiencing natural decline, and religious demographics are changing rapidly. This is not all bad news, of course. Within it, people at all levels of church involvement (including no involvement) are asking big, beautiful, innovative questions about the commitments of Christianity and future forms of spiritual community.

Seminary graduates have passions they want practice and share in the world:

– Some are called to congregational life, even as budgets and membership rolls are shrinking. Many churches are transitioning to part-time positions, and pastors struggle to pay their bills.

– Some are called to ministries of justice and advocacy. In solidarity, they seek to live at similar economic levels with those they hope to empower. But in order to live this way, they also need health insurance.

– Some are called to organize uncharted forms of ministry that have never been created before. They want connect with people in new ways. But in order to this, they must be freed from their educational debt.

None of these leaders are in this for the money. Far from it. But they do need financial security to live as the leaders they have been called to be.

– and –

None of these leaders want to do this alone. We are not simply throwing money at seminarians to do ministry for us.

We are inviting their leadership so that we may all be empowered to do the very same things,
launching our own
time,
discipleship,
innovation,
justice,
service,
spiritual formation,
connection,
healing,
solidarity, and
advocacy
into the world.

So. . . do you personally know a graduating seminarian?
Would you consider gifting them with a check out of the blue?

Renee Roederer

Please see these posts also, as they all address similar challenges and opportunities:

1) David Derus considers a variety of funding strategies for ministry in a new context:
3 Structural Alternatives to Bi-Vocational Ministry

2) Drew Downs is honest about the frustrations young pastors feel when they ponder bivocational ministry:
What a Young Pastor Hears When You Talk about Bivocational Ministry

3) Layton Williams argues that ministry positions outside of parish settings are just as valuable as those connected to congregations:
A Pastor By Another Name

4) I believe we should create a movement of Neighborhood Chaplaincy:
We Need Full-Time Neighborhood Chaplains? How Might We Support That?

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s