Monday, November 10, 2008

Next Steps

Remember when I posted our prayer requests for our trip here? One of those was for discernment for Greg and I in regards to our relationship with HopeChest. Thank you so much for praying, we are definitely feeling led in a particular direction. We went on the trip partially to see how we felt about HopeChest in the end.

The trip really confirmed to us that we LOVE the vision of HopeChest. If you aren't familiar, their vision is to see faith communities connect with orphan communities for long-term, holistic relationships that bring wholeness! I love this concept because it relies on the local church. I love God's church. I know it might be broken at times and not always obedient to His call and purpose but HE designed it and founded it with broken people to reveal HIS redemptive purpose. I LOVE watching His church BE His redemptive agent in a broken world. A church building a long term relationship with an orphan community is just that!

If you are wondering logistically how this works. . .a pastor who is interested in his church getting involved goes on a trip to Uganda. While there, he prayerfully picks out an orphanage for his congregation to partner with. Upon reaching home and making his final decision he contacts HopeChest to "choose" that orphan community. HopeChest then sends profile pictures and cards of each child in that orphanage to the church. This starts the simple sponsorship program. Just like most of the other ones you know of. . .$34 a month to sponsor a child! The cool thing is that this brings what many in your church are already doing and provides synergy and community to the process. Now, you are doing it together. . it's putting a new face on missions and connecting the community in times of prayer and giving. The cool thing is that they also really encourage the church to visit "their" kids and build into the orphanage with other projects too! What a great way to get a church involved in missions, both financially and emotionally! It doesn't even cost anything out of the church missions budget because each family supports the children they sponsor. Ok, after all of that . . .are you in?!

HopeChest has found that almost every pastor who visits, ends up advocating for his church to sponsor an orphanage. This makes Pastors getting to the field CRUCIAL!!

This is where we want to be involved! We will be prayerfully seeking the Lord and then presenting this opportunity to others to start fundraising for pastoral scholarships. We began this weekend while Tom Davis was in town. Please lift this up to the Lord. We are praying for HIS provision and guidance in big ways. We only want to serve and watch.

Once pastoral scholarships are raised, we will be leading the trips for the pastors to see Uganda in person and check out the orphanages available for sponsorships. We are SO excited about this possibility. If you know pastors that may be interested, please contact us! ( I will be leading a trip April 21-30, Greg will be leading one the last week in May and if we have enough scholarships and pastors interested Pastor Jon will be leading one in June!

We really believe that for people looking for an effective and efficient use of their dollars, pastoral scholarships just make sense!

For a $3000 donation, a pastor can go to Uganda. You can't even calculate the difference that a pastor seeing Uganda and coming back to share the stories with his congregation.. . .financially speaking though. . .let's say that pastor signs up for his church to sponsor an orphanage (almost EVERY pastor does!), that means 100 children (approx) sponsored at $34 a month. That's $3400 a month or $40,800 in the first year. . .or $122,400 within 3 years or $408,000 in 10 years! ALL from a $3,000 donation and investment in one pastor!!

We are praying to raise at least $75,000 for 25 full scholarships. Assuming that some pastors/churches can pay for parts of their trip, that could provide for 30 pastors to go to Uganda. If just 75% of them signed on, that would be 22 orphan communities. . or approx. 2200 children. Or, $74,800 in the first month (2200 kids x $34 a month). OR, $897,600 in the first year. . .OR, $2,692,800 in the first 3 years. Or, $8,976,000 over 1o years. Yes, from donations of $75,000. . it can turn into almost 9 MILLION dollars in 10 years. Let's see the stock market do that one!!!

So, if you are interested in giving or know someone who is. . .just let me know!

Well, that's what's up with us. Please join us in prayer!


Dearest Jessica said...

Can't wait to see what God does!

Vanessa said...

I'll be lifting you and your scholarship mission in my prayers!!

Brittani said...

we are definitely praying wth you on this one. WOW what a great opportunity

Flamingo Mama said...

hmmm...I need to pray about this. I recently started an adoption ministry at our church and i would love to do more with Orphan care. i will present this at our next team meeting.

Anonymous said...

Call Me..
I miss you so much...


Lisa said...

Amazing. I'm trying to connect with our new pastor. I'm hoping we will start an adoption ministry and this would be great to pass along as well. :)

Brittani said...

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