A Moment for Mission
"As God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience." —Colossians 3:12, NRSV
Thirty-four years ago, United Methodists determined a need for a second-mile, designated-giving channel to enable general agencies to appeal directly to constituencies for specific project funding. The 1984 General Conference approved World Service Special Gifts as a test program during the 1985–88 quadrennium, and it continues today.
Current World Service Special Gifts projects include the Africa University Endowment Fund, the Lay Missionary Planting Network, the Leonard Perryman Communications Scholarship for Ethnic Minority Students, the Methodist Global Education Fund and the National Anti-Gambling Project.
A World Service Special Gift is a designated financial contribution made by an individual, local church, organization, district or annual conference to a project authorized as such by the Connectional Table. All general boards and commissions, except units of general agencies authorized to receive gifts through The Advance, can recommend projects specifically related to one or more of the agency's Disciplinary functions.
The first financial responsibility of churches and individuals is to support World Service and conference benevolences and other apportioned funds. However, voluntary World Service Special Gifts are a way to support specific educational ventures and social justice. Thank you for your generous gifts!
Loving God, clothe us with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. In your name, we pray. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: First Sunday after Christmas Day – Magnificent and Merciful God, we come to worship you this morning at the close of one year and threshold of a new one. Our faithfulness in the year behind has not been all that we wished it to be and we know the road ahead of us holds many new challenges and opportunities to be the followers you desire. May the giving of our gifts this morning help firm our resolve to be the disciples of Christ that you desire for the world, full of compassion, mercy and lovingkindness. May we, like your son Jesus, be found dwelling in your presence and love when others come looking for us. In Christ steadfast love we pray. Amen. (Luke 2:41-52)
Leonard M. Perryman was one of my favorite colleagues. When my first child was born in 1983, Leonard was in the final stages of the cancer that would claim his life. But he scribbled a reminder to his wife, Shirley, to buy my daughter a nice gift. Shirley included that note with a darling baby dress that I still treasure.
A United Methodist journalist for 30 years, Leonard continually fostered, supported and encouraged the Missional Priority on the Ethnic Minority Local Church and the empowerment of women in the church.
Thirty-five years later, his legacy continues. The $2,500 Leonard M. Perryman Communications Scholarship for Racial Ethnic Minority Students assists a United Methodist undergraduate who intends to pursue a career in religion journalism through study at an accredited U.S. college or university. The scholarship promotes excellence by helping students continue their education in communication, including electronic and print journalism.
You honor an amazing journalist when you support the Perryman Scholarship through World Service Special Gifts. Thank you!
— Barbara Dunlap-Berg retired from United Methodist Communications in 2016.