2018-2020 CORR Action Fund Grant Recipients


The General Commission on Religion and Race (GCORR) will award $463,025 to projects developed by local churches, district annual conferences, and seminaries in all 5 jurisdictions of The United Methodist Church through the CORR Action Fund (CAF) United States 2018-2020 grant cycle.

The following U.S.-based projects or programs, which are listed in parentheses, will receive funding in the 2018-2020 grant cycle:

  • Arch Street UMC, Eastern Pennsylvania Conference (“Sabbath Solidarity”): Arch Street UMC in partnership with Juntos, New Sanctuary Movement Philadelphia and POWER (Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild) seek to put forth this initiative. New Sanctuary Movement of Philadelphia (NSM) builds community across faith, ethnicity, and class in the work to end injustices against immigrants regardless of immigration status, express radical welcome for all, and ensure that values of dignity, justice, and hospitality are lived out in practice and upheld in policy. Regarding the concept of Sabbath, they have developed a shared understanding that Sabbath is the basis of a fundamental right of all humans to occupy space and time simply because they are — no control, no exploitation, no oppression, and no expectation. Sabbath becomes a reality for everyone when white supremacy, xenophobia, racism, heterosexism, patriarchy, ableism and all the ways they are embedded in our society and minds are eradicated. ($35,000)
  • Emory Grove United Methodist Church, Baltimore-Washington Conference (“African, African American & Latino Youth Engaged For Change”): Epworth United Methodist Church and Emory Grove UMC will partner with Redland Middle School and Forest Oak Middle School to address the immigration system, mis-education on part of school system, lack of afterschool possibilities, lack of leadership development for black, brown youth, lack of safe venues to build relationships across race/culture, lack of knowledge of connecting points, fear among new immigrant parents. To reach, engage, disciple and deploy young families and young adults for Christ this urgent mission will be executed by (1) Continuing to elevate ministries of EG and EUMC as community leaders through radio programs, (2) Funding and supporting community initiatives deemed important to develop relationships with family and youth (3) Sustaining existing connection points to FOMS and RMS i.e. providing Thanksgiving and Christmas support (4) Providing at least 4 specific sequential training sessions led by an outside Community Organizer focused on leading youth to change agents. ($25,000)
  • United Methodist Church of Greater New Jersey, New England Annual Conference (“Joshua Generation: Learning from the Past to Equip The Next Generation of Justice Leaders”): The United Methodist Church of Greater New Jersey seeks to equip and grow leaders who make disciples for the transformation of the world. The two primary strengths which will support this initiative in partnership with Partners Morrow Memorial United Methodist Church, The Mark Montclair, and Nueva Esperanza include, a diverse and gifted leadership that will shape and implement this initiative for youth and young adults. Secondly, a network of regional and national partnerships that provide invaluable experiences and tools for youth and young adults to learn from and develop their own racial justice initiatives. As GNJ looks to the future, its leadership has identified two cultural shifts as strategic priorities: intercultural competency and engagement with the next generation of leaders which further explains the goal of the initiative. ($35,000)
  • Windsor Village United Methodist Church, Texas Annual Conference (“A Seat at the Table”): Windsor Village United Methodist Church will partner with Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston, Somali Bantu Community of Greater Houston, Dr. Sobhi Zakian Community within the Greater Houston area to address and disrupt the misguided and deliberate destructive interactions that mainstream society and law enforcement have with communities of color. This initiative will be executed through (1) one or two town hall meetings (2) a family dinner consisting of about 250-300 community members (3) “Lunch, Learn and Serve” program offerings that will be held Saturdays, (4) Law Enforcement Education, and a community service event titled, “Dine, Dialogue, Demonstrate” that will be sponsored by local businesses. ($35,000)
  • Urban Village Church, Northern Illinois Conference (“Building Beloved Community: Institutional + Congregational Transformation Toward Anti-Racist”):  Urban Village Church is a multi-site United Methodist Church in Chicago committed to anti-racism and affirmation of God’s LGBTQ people. It is committed to bold, inclusive, relevant ministry and growing new expressions of the gospel. In partnership with Crossroads Anti-Racism Organizing and Training. The focus of this initiative is anti-racism, training lay leaders across ministry areas and institutionalizing practices of reflection, feedback, and change on race-related practices in our church. Also, providing numerous discipleship and educational opportunities for church members and friends at every level to learn about and commit to the work of anti-racism while increasing their capacity to support, involve, and highlight people of color in important church initiatives. ($30,830)
  • First United Methodist Church, Great Plains Annual Conference (“Strengthening North Omaha Neighborhoods: Desegregation through Relationships”): First United Methodist Church in partnership with North Omaha Neighborhood Alliance, Omaha Together One Community, and Claire United Methodist Church Organizations. Forming partnerships and building trusting relationships will help create change to empower the residents of North Omaha to improve their quality of life. Implicit bias that leads to systemic policies that perpetuate economic disparity. Generational differences, too hurting neighborhood building. Race relations require commitment to engage in sacred conversations. Our main goal is to change perspective in our church regarding racial equity and to therefore engage in the specific housing policies that are perpetuating poverty in North Omaha. The main goal is to join NONA and assist in connecting, community, coordinating, collaborating and celebrating. The overall goal will be to bring together NONA, FUMC and OTOC to become vibrant allies which city council will take notice and listen in order to begin funding much needed projects for North Omaha. ($34,575)
  • The Village UMC, Oklahoma Annual Conference (“Serving Single-Parent Families”): Single Parent Support Network (SPSN) in partnership with Single Parent Support Network (SPSN) plan to put for this initiative. The initiative to start a Single-Parent Family Support Ministry is a result of their assessment of the needs in the surrounding community. With nearly half of the surrounding population categorized as single parents, this ministry would offer both relief and transformation for those participating. It also allows another avenue for current members to face their own xenophobia and help shift a stereotyped understanding of family. Many congregations still view the family norm as married couples with an average of 2.5 kids, another way to indirectly exclude single parent families. For this initiative to build a strong Single-Parent Family Ministry, the xenophobic issue identified is single-parent family households not representing the “normal” or stereotypical definition of family. The desire is to offer support for single parents in efforts to overcome systemic poverty, isolation, and stigma as well as promote health and wholeness while offering community and avenues to deepened discipleship. ($28,000)
  • Grace United Methodist Church, Dallas, North Texas Annual Conference (“The Ubuntu Initiative”): Grace United Methodist will partner with the Ubuntu Music Project to address the gap between white students and people of color in the public school system. Knowingly, diverse schools with at-risk students are impacted by a lack of funding due to lower standardized test scores, which means that they have less access to a quality education and programs designed to help them succeed. Grace UMC church members will provide ongoing afterschool tutoring and reading to help students, as well as providing volunteers at concerts and events. Through this initiative Grace UMC will also purchase and provide violins and other equipment that have previously been borrowed, which will contribute to the long-term sustainability of the program and support program growth. The initiative will also help fund staff to ensure program success. In addition to these programs, Grace UMC and partner will host a panel discussion around racism and xenophobia in education, specifically in standardized testing and school fund allocation models. Following the panel, a breakout sessions will occur over the course of the grant period to mobilize church members, program volunteers, and others connected with the initiative to empower members to become involved in community organizing and create sustainable systemic change. ($35,000)
  • Trietsch Memorial United Methodist Church, North Texas Annual Conference (“Faith, Race, and Justice”): Trietsch Memorial United Methodist Church in partnership with Faith in Texas, Westside Baptist Church, and Board of Church and Society- North Tx Conference seek to put forth this initiative. The congregation is primarily Caucasian, they feel that there are opportunities for relationships (outside of work or school) with African Americans and Latinos are limited. The congregation is not aware of the injustices and prejudices they face regularly. The changing demographics of Texas offer an opportunity for inclusive vision of faith within public service. ($11,450)
  • Lenexa United Methodist Church, Great Plains Annual Conference (“Conversations Celebrating
    Diversity”): Better Together Inc. and its partners Metropolitan Avenue United Methodist Church, and Avenue of Life share common concern on the need to improve people living at poverty level’s access to medical, dental, and mental health help; diminishing generational violence and victimization; supporting successful attainment of higher educational and vocational goals. The team will enforce a policy change framework that will include public awareness, public will, and public action. Dinner/Discussions will be held bi-weekly to collect feedback by paid, trained table facilitators, who will support the primary speaker’s direction. Information will be reviewed, analyzed, and communicated in a public campaign. The campaign will feature flyers, brochures, posters and other means to convey their mission in public spaces, such as libraries, schools, community centers, athletic events, etc. In addition, workshops, trainings, classes, and two fun community gatherings will be held to promote civic engagement amongst the organizational partners and community. ($30,000)
  • Texas United Methodist Women’s Legislative Event Committee, Rio Texas Annual Conference (“Not Going Quietly”): Texas United Methodist Women’s Legislative Event Committee in partnership with Texas Impact plans to put for this initiative. SB4 generates fear and anxiety in communities of color throughout Texas. Advocates and law enforcement officials expect the law will result in racial profiling of all individuals who don’t “look” like citizens, not just those who might be Hispanic. Additionally, it will result in the underreporting of crimes against people of color and an unwillingness of crime victims to participate in criminal investigations. Congregations need to know what to do now, how to assist fearful community members, and how to work for change going forward. ($10,000)
  • Duke Divinity School, North Carolina Annual Conference (“Durham Pilgrimage of Hope and Pain”): The Center for Reconciliation (CFR), exists to form and support leaders, communities, and congregations as ambassadors of reconciliation. By partnering with DurhamCares for the Pilgrimage of Pain and Hope initiative the main issue they have identified is the connection between racism and place. Durham’s history has led to societal division, violence, class inequality, and racism. They hope it will inspire those involved to take action in the immediate community and beyond. ($15,000)
  • Alabama West Florida Annual Conference (“At the Table”): The Alabama West Florida Conference in partnership with the Vision Center (A ministry of St. John UMC) seek to put forth the At the Table initiative. They will bring about change by training church leaders to effectively minister to all people. They will train them in cultural competency and effective community engagement. They will provide them with resources to help begin the work of racial reconciliation. This work will continue with follow-up “At The Table” gatherings with Bishops, District Superintendents, and ethnic churches. ($15,000)
  • FaithJustice Foundation, Virginia Annual Conference (“FaithJustice Initiative”): The FaithJustice Foundation along with the Seventh Episcopal District, and Christian Methodist Episcopal Church share focused efforts in poverty and inequality, racism and racial inequality, immigration, and healthcare justice and disability rights. More specifically, the team will (1) Continue and expand forums by attracting prominent speakers, offering honoraria, advertising to the community, and expanding forum participation through Facebook Live (2) Expand outreach to millennials through social media, a website, and training opportunities (3) Create a series of web-based videos on such topics as “The FaithJustice Vision,” “The Bible and Social Justice,” “The Dos and Don’ts of Faith-Based Advocacy,” and others. (4) Promote the Forum as a model for how other churches can engage social justice (5) Launch a national campaign, called “Social Justice Summer 2018” to encourage churches to have a dedicated time to explore social justice through preaching, small groups, and mission. (Up to $35,000)
  • Rising Hope United Methodist Mission Church, Virginia Annual Conference (“Breaking Bread Together”): Rising Hope United Methodist Mission Church and its partners Woodlawn-Faith UMC, Aldersgate UMC United Methodist Youth, and Ventures in Community have sought out to identify and participate in change that disturbs racist and xenophobic thoughts, systems, policies and practices in the diverse communities of Fairfax County. The teams will (1) develop and implement resources and provide training for individuals, churches, and community groups to grow in their understanding of and respect for the diversity found in the community that is the Route One Corridor. (2) Conduct monthly volunteer training sessions and quarterly sessions on topics related to building a vibrant multi-cultural community. Rising Hope members will update and encourage participants to address the ongoing issues regarding racism and xenophobia. ($22,700)
  • Office of Ministerial Relations – NCCUMC, North Carolina Annual Conference (“Pilgrimage of Pain and Hope: Freedom Ride and Peer Learning Immersion”): The Office of Ministerial Relations in partnership with the Office of Spiritual Development and Dialogue – North Carolina Central University plan to put forth this initiative. The annual conference known as Pilgrimage, hosts a large number of youths, pastors, and parents who gather for worship and teaching. In 2016, Pilgrimage was held four days after the recent presidential election. There was a racist comment exchange from one youth to another. This exchange turned into a rage of anger and division throughout the gathering. In preparation for Pilgrimage this year there is continued hurt and mistrust between churches and youth leaders. Recognizing the major influence pastoral leaders have on the lives of our young people, now is the time to facilitate stronger and deeper experiences to equip leaders to have the difficult conversations. The goal is to bring individuals together who may never cross paths and work together to expose long-held belief systems. Also, teaching young clergy how to facilitate dialogue on racism, and encouraging young adults to be heard and to speak truthfully when they feel their voices are silenced. ($15,000)
  • Board of Ordained Ministry, North Alabama Annual Conference (“Preparing Clergy, Leaders, and Churches For A Diverse World”): This initiative will seek to address explicit and implicit racial bias within our clergy lay leadership, and conference leadership in North Alabama through diversity training and intentional conversations about race with a diverse group of participants. Clergy, conference, and lay leaders should then impart learnings from this initiative to their local churches and surrounding communities. Ethnic ministries will partner with The Byrd’s Nest LLC, and Crossroads Community Engagement Center of the University of Alabama to conduct diversity and implicit bias awareness training to all those attending local pastor licensing school, the RIM ordination process, and the clergy integrity refresher trainings. This training will also become a part of the lay ministry certification process and will be offered to all of the district operational teams and the conference priority operational teams. These trainings will brought forth to a resolution at the 2020 annual conference that would require every local church’s SPRC committee to attend a diversity training. ($15,000)
  • Raising Esperanza, Virginia Annual Conference (“Raising Esperanza”): Raising Esperanza a ministry that promotes a holistic approach to the needs and challenges of the immigrant community. There are several Latino churches in the community, but they do not offer awareness, social justice, etc. Recently, Raising Esperanza had a town hall meeting as many in the Latino community had fears due to the hostile environment of the new administration, the event was not advertised, but through word of mouth, more than one hundred people attended. The goal of this initiative is to create unique opportunities and events for the Latino community as well as awareness and education to the entire community. This issue is important to the Latino community. Raising Esperanza is in partnership with UCHA Ministries, Sheehey Immigration Law, PLLC. ($10,000)
  • Pinoy Van-Port Ministries, Pacific Northwest Annual Conference (“Pinoy Filipino American Van-Port Multicultural Ministries”): Pinoy Van-Port Ministries alongside the partnership of National Alliance for Filipino Concerns, International Coalition for Human Rights in the Phils, and Gabriela Portland strive to address racism/xenophobia within the local Filipino and Filipino American community by doing community research and engaging in depth with Filipino community members on their most urgent issues relating to racism/xenophobia. The organizations will also interview Filipino community members on the effects of the martial law in the Philippines to later present the gathered information into a community forum. All organizations will be hands-on through planning, project proposals/programs activities, meetings, forums. ($15,000)
  • La Plaza United Methodist Church , California Pacific Annual Conference (“God is in the Graffiti: The power of race, xenophobia, systemic inequity and their intersection with homelessness”): La Plaza United Methodist Church will be in partnership with West District California Pacific Annual Conference, Los Angeles United Methodist Museum of Social Justice, and El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument to identify the humanitarian crisis on homelessness in Los Angeles. This initiative strives to promote change by (1) Direct Service Coordination by mobilizing the congregation, local business community, utilization of spaces owned by the city and managed by El Pueblo management to build trust and empathy with the homeless community. (2) Promote educational conversations and events coordination in the center of downtown Los Angeles. (3) Host some family style meals with the support of local businesses, churches and potential partners in the community. (4) Promote arts as an instrument to originate change in perceptions and attitudes. ($35,000)
  • Youth Chaplaincy Coalition, Pacific Northwest Annual Conference (“Young Warrior’s Program”): Youth Chaplaincy Coalition in partnership with The King County Juvenile Detention Center and The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office seek to put forth this initiative. The focus of the Young Warrior’s Program will be continued diversion from the juvenile justice system along with systemic change of the justice system by personal testimony and influence in Olympia, our state’s capital. Additionally, the Young Warrior’s Program is designed to raise youth and young adult leaders. The Juvenile Court System is building a new building that is expected to be completed in 2018. We have been advocating for a space for Peacemaking initiatives and alternatives to detention while ensuring that each program is fully inclusive of youth of color. By diverting youth to the Peacemaking Circle process we are diverting youth from incarceration to community engagement and healing, which decreases the incarceration of youth of color. ($29,000)
GCORR is building the capacity of The United Methodist Church to be contextually relevant and to reach more people, younger people, and more diverse people as we make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.