General Assembly
of the Church of God
in Michigan

"equipping local congregations to extend the Kingdom of God"

Lifelong Learning Matching Funds

In creating and developing this program, the Pastoral Health Ministry is seeking to help the General Assembly of the Church of God in Michigan pastors take advantage of the many sources of enrichment available for their ministry.

Pastoral Health has in mind the kinds of continuing educational experiences which will enhance a pastor’s knowledge, skills and/or academic training.

Such continuing education may deal with preaching, administration, time management, counseling, or other phases of pastoral responsibility.

Candidates for matching Lifelong learning funds shall be pastors and/or assistant/associate pastors or chaplains who serve or attend Michigan Church of God congregations.

The church should encourage the pastor(s) to take time off (other than a for camp meetings and vacations) from local duties in order to attend approved training sessions. One week per year is recommended as a minimum.

The program is understood as a continuous and continuing program. The congregation makes a deposit with the Service Center of the Church of God in Michigan. Pastoral Health Ministry will match each deposit of the local congregation with a 100% ratio. That is, the Ministry will add $1.00 for each dollar that the congregation contributes. The maximum that will be added by the Pastoral Health Ministry will be $150.00 per year. A deposit of up to $150.00 by the local congregation will qualify the pastor(s) for the maximum of $150.00 matched funds. The congregation may deposit additional funds for the pastor’s use.

Lifelong Learning - Matching Funds is supported through the B. Gale Hetrick Memorial Endowment. Depending upon market fluctuations, the General Assembly budget will provide any additional funds to grant requests.

As long as the local congregation continues to deposit funds in the Lifelong Learning Fund, Pastoral Health Ministry will continue to match those funds, providing that he/she uses the funds for his/her continuing education.

Should the pastor(s) of the congregation fail to complete a continuing education training session before the end of the third year, that candidate’s funds contributed to the account by Pastoral Health will revert to the General Assembly budget.

The monies contributed by the congregation will be credited to the General Giving (of that congregation) to the General Assembly budget, and the account closed, unless the congregation requests otherwise. Before any account is closed, correspondence with the congregation and pastor will be implemented.

Except as designated above, all funds placed in the account by the congregation will remain in the congregation’s account, and will remain available to their pastor(s). No account may build above $1,000.00

In the event a church does not wish to contribute to the fund, the pastor(s) could make deposits in their name, and the Pastoral Health will match funds as indicated above. Since the church-at-large is investing in this program, Pastoral Health reserves the privilege of approving the experiences being supported by funds.

In requesting funds for a specific experience, pastor may ask for approval of other kinds of experiences which may not appear on the current list of approved experiences. The Executive Committee of Pastor Health Ministry will act on these requests.

If the Committee cannot approve the specific experience for which funds are requested, the pastor is at liberty to use the money contributed by his/her congregation. Such request must be made by letter or e-mail, choginmi@choginmi.org.

Qualifying Experiences:

  • Conferences and training at Anderson University, Anderson School of Theology, Warner Southern College, other accredited Online programs and schools

  • Injoy Institutes

  • InService Training Institute

  • Institute for Servant Leadership

  • Serendipity Workshops

  • Lecture Tours on Biblical Subjects Church History or Theology

  • School of ministry One-Day Seminars

  • The Alban Institute

  • Youth Specialties

  • Willow Creek

It is recommended that funds be used for a broad range and variety of educational experiences. Therefore, funds should not be used more than twice for the same educational experience without special arrangements.

It will be understood that a person using funds for pursual of a degree (a degree program in an academic institution) could use the funds for several years because course offerings from semester/term/year to semester/term/year would offer emphasis in various areas.

It is not appropriate for Lifelong Learning Funds to be used for the North American Convention of the Church of God, camp meetings, or minister’s meetings such as General Assembly, Pastor’s Fellowship, etc.

INTENDED BENEFITS OF THE PLAN

  1. To provide stronger leadership through minsters who are kept abreast of and involved in professional training. Education should be an on-going lifestyle.

  2. To provide incentives of time and finances for further development of ministerial skills and understanding.

  3. To provide help for the pastor and the local church in planning for his/her growth experiences in ministerial leadership.

  4. To provide variety in educational experiences and discourage repetition.

All monies contributed by the congregation are the property of the congregation and are intended for use by the resident pastor(s). Funds contributed by the congregation may, however, be drawn upon by the pastor upon his/her resignation at the written request of the congregation. Only funds contributed by the local congregation or the pastor(s) may be withdrawn

If a pastor moves from one congregation to another within the state, he/she should draw on the account of the new congregation. However, if it is the desire of the previous congregation that the funds be available to the pastor for lifelong learning in his/her new location, they may so authorize by written request and lifelong learning funds will be granted.

All persons having continuing education experiences which have been financed (totally or in part) by matching funds shall turn in a signed confirmation form within ten days following that experience.

If the church wishes to help the pastor’s spouse to attend any given event, Lifelong Learning Matching Fund dollars may be designated to do so.

HOW TO GET THE PLAN STARTED

Submit payment to the Church of God in Michigan either with a check or using PayPal, direct payment to choginmi@choginmi.org. Mail submission to Church of God in Michigan, 4212 Alpha Street, Lansing, Michigan 48910-0711.

Use the donate button below to add funds to your account using PayPal. Remember the Service Center only matches $150.00 per year.