SOS Mission Support: Planning for the future, KNOWING God is with us!
Dear friends in Christ,
And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age…You are never alone.
This is true because our Lord Jesus promised to be with us always. It is also true because your siblings in Christ throughout Southern Ohio stand with you in the power of the Holy Spirit. We are, all of us, the synod together. We rejoice in the ministry that you are doing in the place and with the people God has entrusted to you (which none of the rest of us are in a position to do) and we rejoice in the ministry we do together as a synod (which none of us could do alone). Your mission support dollars fund ministry throughout Southern Ohio, the United States, and around the world. Be on the lookout for videos—on our website and in your email inbox--showing what you’ve made possible through your mission support in 2019. Thank you! Supporting your work in your community and sustaining the excellent ministry we are doing together as the Southern Ohio Synod is the goal and purpose of the mission and ministry plan that was affirmed and approved at the 2019 Synod Assembly. Graphically, this ministry and mission plan looks like this*:
|*This graph is a “functional” presentation of the 2020-2021 Mission & Ministry Plan, which incorporates the costs of staff support into each of the Synod’s program areas. If you’d like to remind yourself of the details, you can view the Mission & Ministry Plan on the Synod’s website under the Vision and Mission tab.|
This is our Mission and Ministry Plan. We are all the Southern Ohio Synod together, and we all share in the work of restoring the world with Jesus through these commitments. When our Treasurer, Kevin Pyle, and I presented this plan to the Synod Assembly for consideration and approval, I noted that this plan would require $150,097 in additional Mission Support from congregations in order to sustain the excellent ministry we are already doing together, as well as allow us to extend our ministry. Here are just three examples of how we hope to do more with your increased support:
- We are delighted that applications for candidacy have dramatically increased over this last year. We want to encourage and accompany these candidates through discernment and preparation as we have in the past. Your increased support would help us to prepare new laborers for God’s mission field.
- Our Synod Staff, who have been working so diligently and faithfully on our behalf, have not had a pay raise since 2014. A modest increase in mission support from each congregation would allow us to offer our dedicated staff an increase of 2.5%.
- While the Thrive! Campaign envisions the exciting prospect of planting new congregations (Goal 4), we have a continuing obligation to support our existing “new start” and “strategic ministry” congregations. These ministries have, in these last years, been supported through various restricted funds which are now exhausted. Our 2020-21 Mission and Ministry Plan places the continuing support for these congregations on a more secure footing as they grow toward independence.
We are excited about the Thrive! Campaign, which is separate from regular Mission Support, because it will enable the congregations in Southern Ohio to do life-giving work above and beyond our already-existing ministries. We hope that you will be involved in the Thrive! Campaign and all its benefits for your congregation and for all congregations, rostered leaders, and lay leaders in Southern Ohio. We also hope that you will continue the ministry that we already share through Regular Mission Support. You will soon be receiving a letter to indicate your Estimate of Giving in 2020 to support this Mission and Ministry Plan. The Southern Ohio Synod Finance Team encourages you to prayerfully consider--as a congregation--how you can be the synod through your mission support in 2020. We are better and stronger together, joining Jesus in the restoration of the world.
Rebecca (Becky) Witt
Chair, Southern Ohio Synod Finance Team
The Southern Ohio Stewardship Team
Rev. Emily Beckering, Chair (Pastor of St. Paul, Reading)
Rev. Mick Althauser (Retired)
Josselyn Bennett (Member of St. Philip, Columbus)
Dale Poppe (Member of St. Paul, Botkins)
Doug Ware (Member of St. Jacob’s, Jackson Center)
Becky Witt (Member of St. Paul, Lancaster)
Rev. Katie Kerrigan, Director for Evangelical Mission