Bishop Awards Grants with Plans for More

Thursday, June 25th, 2020

Logo for the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania

Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. (Acts 4:32)

Over the past four months this diocese has demonstrated remarkable resiliency.  As we journeyed together on our sacred pilgrimage, the Bishop discerned the need for additional assistance over the coming months.  In response he asked, for the first time in its history, that the Growth Development Fund (GDF) make a second round of distribution.  This was unanimously endorsed by the Trustees, Standing Committee and Diocesan Council.

Normally, grants are awarded on an annual basis but the need to prepare for these next steps was critical.  Over the past two and a half years these grants have helped to make churches more accessible, increased capacity of food and veteran’s ministries and renovated spaces to allow for counseling and community services.

The GDF began during the Bishop’s pilgrimage when he discovered that a number of churches needed small to medium capital improvements to expand their capacity for ministry, hospitality, and community engagement. The Fund was created, and approved by governance, to help make such improvements more possible.

A committee of seven volunteers from across the diocese and two diocesan staff spent many hours reviewing 59 applications (18 new, 41 resubmissions) based on the urgency of the need and the potential impact on a congregation's life and ministry. The applications were extraordinary and describe the great ministry occurring in this diocese. Recommendations were then made to the Bishop for final approval.

Based on these criteria, the following eleven churches are each receiving a grant:


  • All Saints, Fallsington  ($15,000 New furnace and gutters/downspouts)
  • Redeemer, Andalusia  ($29,800 Driveway, HVAC upgrade, basement insulation and windows)
  • Redeemer, Springfield ($30,000 Handicap bathrooms)
  • St Christopher’s, Gladwyne ($29,000 Remodel bathroom and make ADA)
  • St Gabriel’s, Philadelphia (Mission) ($28,500 ductless A/C for sanctuary and hall)
  • St James, Langhorne ($30,000 Window replacement - affordable housing property)
  • St. Mary’s, Chester (Mission) ($29,981 Church windows, stairlift, stackable chairs)
  • St. Paul’s, Levittown ($30,000 Parking lot repairs)
  • St. Simon the Cyrenian ($30,000 Handicap ramp)
  • St Timothy’s, Roxborough ($30,000 Handicap ramp)
  • Trinity, Swarthmore ($13,200 Trinity House renovations)

Churches that did not receive grants are automatically eligible to be reconsidered for the next round.  They only need to notify Canon Doug Horner if they still wish to be considered. 

Due to the extraordinary circumstances and challenges of this year, the next round of funding will be made available now.   The application period will run from July 1, 2020 – August 21, 2020. Start your application now.