Ministry Imagination Grants

Ministry Imagination Grants2018-08-22T15:34:51+00:00


The Resurrection Fund of the Minneapolis Area Synod was established by the Synod Council in 2017. The Fund will steward proceeds from the sale of property donated to the synod by congregations that have concluded their own ministries.  The initial gift to the Fund was about $1.2 million.  This and subsequent gifts will be used for six purposes:

  • Small grants, to be called Ministry Imagination Grants – using 25% of the total fund

  • ELCA or partner ministries outside the synod – 10%

  • Ministry in the synod that continues a unique gift of the closed congregation – 10%

  • A project or projects within the synod designed to have a major impact – 25%

  • New mission starts within the synod – 25%

  • Telling the stories of all these projects; administration – 5%

The Synod Council is responsible for the distribution of all funds. It has established a Resurrection Fund Advisory Committee (RFAC) to make recommendations for Ministry Imagination Grants, subject to review by the Synod Council or its Executive Committee.

Purpose and Eligibility

The Ministry Imagination Grants are intended to offer support for new, enhanced or expanded ministry initiatives that uniquely further the gospel, encourage growth in faith, and/or strengthen Christian service.

Any congregation of the Minneapolis Area Synod may develop a proposal, either independently, or in a partnership that includes two or more synod congregations, or through a partnership of congregation(s) and other ministries or service entities.

For more information, contact Rev. Craig Pederson,, 612-230-3316

Download grant guidelines

Resurrection Fund Advisory Committee members

  • Sandra Anderson – Bethlehem Twin Cities, Minneapolis

  • Dana Cossette (Chair) – St. Barnabas, Plymouth

  • Vicky Elliott – Nativity, St. Anthony

  • Rev. Matt Flom  – Long Lake, Isanti

  • Cindy Hoffer – Normandale, Edina

  • Rev. Peter Johnson – St. Andrew, Eden Prairie

  • Jane Kretzmann – Christ Church, Minneapolis

  • Rev. Stan Olson (Retired Bishop of SW MN Synod) – Grace University, Minneapolis

  • Rev. Craig Pederson – Minneapolis Area Synod, ELCA staff

Round One Recipients of Resurrection Fund Grants

Alter Guild Podcast – Four pastors (Meta Carlson of Bethlehem Twin Cities–Minnetonka Campus, Matthew Fleming of St. Andrew Eden Prairie, Miriam Samuelson Roberts of Westwood St. Louis Park, and Derek Tronsgard of Good Shepherd Wayzata) will expand their podcast series with topics  encouraging connections, curiosity and empathy from a faith perspective.

Augustana Lutheran, Minneapolis and Messiah Lutheran, Minneapolis – Joint confirmation ministry with the diverse youth of these congregations and their neighborhoods.

Bread of Life Deaf Lutheran and Bethel Lutheran, South Minneapolis – A year-long program to grow relationships between two congregations and build bridges between deaf and hearing individuals within and outside the church.  The program will also educate members and the broader community about deaf culture, teach American Sign Language, and develop congregational capacity to do outreach.

Diamond Lake Lutheran, Minneapolis – Artistic ministry initiative intended to bring religious seekers to Diamond Lake through an alternative weekly worship service using the performing arts to spread the Word of God in its many forms.

First Lutheran, Columbia Heights – “Love God and Love Our Neighborhood” weekly gatherings, focusing on intentional invitation to the diverse immediate neighborhood around the church with food, art, storytelling, games, and other activities.

Gustavus Adolphus, Minneapolis – “Viewpoints and Values” facilitated discussion events on challenging topics, with congregation members and intentionally identified groups of community members.

Holy Trinity Lutheran, New Prague – Car repair ministry for low income neighbors who cannot afford maintenance and repairs to sustain basic transportation for employment.  The ministry will be housed in a newly constructed multi-purpose garage on the church property that will also serve as a workshop for congregational projects.

Mental Health Connect (Bethlehem Twin Cities) – Collaborative ministry with several congregation and organization partners, the grant will help to expand mental health services to three additional congregations, provide volunteer training, and develop “navigator” model of assistance for those struggling with mental health concerns.

Mount Olive Lutheran, Minneapolis – Living Table Lending, an a collaborative partnership intended to provide options to financially vulnerable persons who are often caught in the web of payday lending.

Mount Olivet Lutheran, Plymouth – Development of a prayer wall, labyrinth, benches and signage on the church grounds immediately adjacent to a pedestrian entrance to French Regional Park, providing public witness and welcome.  The project is being developed in coordination with the park and other local organizations.

Nativity Lutheran, St. Anthony Village – Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) assessment and follow up for church leadership (pastors, staff, church council members), intended to be a first phase of IDI assessment that would expand to other ministry teams and groups.

Oak Grove Lutheran, Richfield – “First Responders to First Responders”, developing a ministry of outreach and support for First Responders in Richfield, utilizing both volunteer teams and pastors.

Our Father’s Lutheran, Rockford – Enhancements and upgrades to the kitchen facility that will increase capacity for expanding food ministries in the community.

River of Life Lutheran, Minneapolis – Enhanced outreach initiative to the surrounding neighborhood through marketing, signage, contact management software, and other supplies.

St. James Lutheran, Crystal – Crystal Community Connects, a new outreach initiative focusing on welcome, worship and faith formation, utilizing volunteers and a part-time seminary intern.

Transfiguration Lutheran, Bloomington – Grant will support the first “Addiction and Faith Conference” in the fall of 2018.  The conference will provide resources and support for addiction and recovery for faith leaders and their families.  The hope is that this will become an annual conference.

University Lutheran Church of Hope, Minneapolis; Holy Trinity Lutheran, Minneapolis; Mt. Olive Lutheran, Minneapolis; House of Prayer Lutheran Church, Richfield – Development of training videos to teach faith-based community organizing to congregational groups, providing resources for listening and storytelling to connect church and community.

Zion Lutheran, Anoka – Experimental Sunday night worship service targeting nontraditional worshipers and those who can’t attend Sunday mornings.  The grant will support additional musicians, staff time and marketing.