INDIANAPOLIS – Far from the depths of winter, a six-member Bishop’s Christmas offering task force convened May 12 to distribute $82,382 received this past December to 22 children’s ministries worldwide.

The task force also set aside $10,000 for Coyner to use at his discretion during the next 12 months for ministries meeting the needs of children such as in natural disasters.

The task force divided the funds three ways: for children’s ministries within Indiana, within the United States and worldwide. Some $27,460 went to United Methodist Church Advance Specials for children beyond the United States, $27,460 to UMC Advance Specials for children’s ministries within the United States and another $27,460 to Indiana children’s ministries.

More than $2,960 was given to each of eight ministries overseas including:

  • Ishe Anesu Project at Mutare in Zimbabwe;
  • Babyfold at Old Mutare Hospital in Mutare, Zimbabwe;
  • Infant Welfare Center at Old City in Jerusalem, Israel;
  • Warne Babyfold and Lane School of Mothercraft in Bareilly North India;
  • Ministry with Children, Shade & Fresh Water Project in Brazil;
  • The Homeless and Abandoned Children in North Katanga Conference in Kamina, Democratic Republic of Congo;
  • Cambodia: Community Development Project in Tonie Basak and Bording; and
  • Kafakumba, Children’s Programming Marion Ind., Mission Storehouse.

Two other overseas projects included the Operation Classroom “Reclaiming a Lost Generation” in Liberia at $1,750 and the Wesley Camp and Retreat Center at $2,000.

Gifts to children’s ministries within the United States included six projects receiving more than $4,570 each included:

  • Henderson Settlement in Frakes, Ky.;
  • McCurdy Mission School in New Mexico;
  • Red Bird Mission in Beverly, Ky.;
  • Gateway UMC, Children’s Ministries in Gulfport, Miss.;
  • North Rampart Street (UM-related) Community Center (formerly known as St. Mark’s) in New Orleans La.; and the
  • Lydia Patterson Institute in El Paso, Texas.

The remaining $27,460 was divided evenly between the two former North and South Indiana conferences which included in North Indiana:

  • North Indiana Camp Scholarships at $8,200;
  • Bridges (worship service for developmentally disabled children) in South Bend at $1,843;
  • Lafayette Urban Ministries at $1,843; and
  • Kokomo Urban Outreach at $1,844.
  • In South Indiana ministries included two children’s projects including:
  • South Indiana Division of Outdoor Ministries Scholarships at $13,000; and the
  • South Indiana School of Christian Mission at $730.

The task force also recommended to Coyner that the special Christmas offering for children continue this coming Advent and Christmas. Next year, funds will be distributed earlier than spring.

The task force divided the funds three ways: Indiana, U.S., worldwide.