INDIANAPOLIS – For the second year in a row, the Bishop’s Christmas Offering for Children has received more than $125,000 for children and youth ministries. Whether helping teen moms with their children in Elkhart, assisting AIDS orphans in Tanzania or providing camp scholarships for Hoosier children and youth to go to summer camp at a conference camp site, the generous gifts of Hoosier United Methodists have provided for the social, physical and spiritual needs of children around the world through the Bishop’s Christmas Offering for Children.

Thank you for your generous contributions. They make a difference in the lives of hundreds of children. Most of those funds were allocated and recently distributed to more than 25 children’s ministries to help meet the special needs of childre throughout the year. A small percentage of those funds are used for the promotion of the offering.

The Indiana Conference Mission Team has prayed for and chosen ministries to improve and give hope to the lives of children. Christmas offering funds received in 2012 were allocated by percentage guidelines to meet the needs of children’s ministries in Indiana, throughout the United States and internationally.

This year the Conference Special Offering Committee approved $123,285 in grants.

Here are the ministries granted and the amount distributed to each ministry related to the Indiana Conference:

  • Indiana United Methodist Conference Camping program received $31,500 for first-time campers and children with financial need;
  • Indiana United Methodist-related children and youth homes received $37,785 ($12,595 each), including the conference-related children’s homes; United Methodist Youth Home in Evansville, Bashor Children’s Home in Goshen and the Indiana United Methodist Children’s Home in Lebanon; and
  • Bishop’s reserve fund for emergency children’s projects can receive up to $10,000.

Indiana ministry projects received $30,000 distributed in this way:

  • $2,000 Vida Nueva Ministries for children on the westside of Indianapolis,
  • $2,000 Back-to-School Extravaganza sponsored by St. Luke’s UMC in Indianapolis,
  • $1,000 Speedway UMC Childcare Ministry summer day camp,
  • $1,000 Greenwood UMC refugee children’s project,
  • $1,000 Smith Valley UMC Ultimate Frisbee outreach youth program in Indianapolis,
  • $2,000 The Julian Center safe shelter ministry for women and children in Indianapolis,
  • $1,000 Exodus Child and Infant refugee fund in Indianapolis,
  • $2,000 Hilltop Neighborhood House in Valparaiso through First UMC,
  • $2,000 Royal Family Kids Camp at Epworth for children with special emotional needs,
  • $2,000 Lunch Bunch daily lunch program at Bunker Hill UMC,
  • $2,000 Kokomo Urban Outreach ministry to support Baby University parenting classes,
  • $2,000 Lighthouse Homeless Shelter services to children based in Columbia City,
  • $2,000 Noble House safe shelter for women and children in Kendallville,
  • $2,000 Back-to-School Rally at St. John UMC in Evansville,
  • $2,000 JAM Club and Clothe-A-Child after school program through the Otwell UMC,
  • $2,000 Serving the Streets (SOS) faith based outreach to children in Brazil,
  • $1,000 Youth and Young Adult Mission Service Fund – The United Methodist Women of Indiana provide scholarships to youth serving on a mission team or other volunteer work; and
  • $1,000 provided for children (Chi-Mi-Ca) and youth (Yo-Pe-Mi-Ca) to attend the Indiana Conference Mission U.

National and International ministry projects received $14,000 distributed in this way:

  • $2,500 Zoe Ministry to the empowerment of orphans and vulnerable children in Africa,
  • $3,000 Street Children Ministry with emphasis on education in Cambodia,
  • $2,500 Ilula Orphan Program ministry to AIDS orphans in Tanzania,
  • $3,000 Wesley Community Center after school program in Dayton, Ohio; and
  • $3,000 Mississippi United Methodist Choctaw Mission youth leadership development.

Programs supported by this offering were selected by the Conference Mission Team and adopted by the Conference Special Offering Committee. These ministries are among those endorsed by the United Methodist General Board of Global Ministries, or are on the Indiana Conference Advance Specials list.

Now is a good time for congregations to decide whether or not they wish to participate in the 2013 Bishop’s Christmas Offering. Promotional materials for the offering will be distributed to each congregation across the Indiana Conference the beginning of November as well as posted on the conference website at

For more information about the Bishop’s Christmas Offering for Children, contact Allison Curts, associate director of the Indiana Conference Mission and Advocacy Team, at

Hoosier United Methodists have provided for the social, physical and spiritual needs of children around the world…