Resources for clergy and congregations
The following programs and resources are funded in part by the Lilly Endowment’s grant to the Dakotas-Minnesota Area around the national initiative to address “Economic Challenges Facing our Pastoral Leaders”. The holistic approach to address these challenges includes opportunities and grants primarily focused on improving personal financial well-being, but also to strengthen church financial health and grow a culture of generosity.
1. Free Financial Education materials for all clergy: All clergy under appointment may obtain free financial education materials (up to $150 value). Contact Diane Owen with your request. You are not limited to the options below. These are simply choices for your consideration.
- Financial Peace University
- Saving Grace, financial management from a Wesleyan perspective just for clergy
- Good Sense Movement's Freed Up Financial Living and others
2. Financial Ministry Grant: Strengthening the financial health of our churches begins with improving the financial well-being of our congregations. Your church may apply for a financial ministry grant (up to $500 value) to offer financial education for individuals in the church or community. Contact Diane Owen with your request. You are not limited to the options below. These are simply choices for your consideration.
- Financial Peace University
- Saving Grace, financial management from a Wesleyan perspective
- Good Sense Movement’s Freed Up Financial Living and others
- Six Weeks on Money, a digital course and small group experience for church leaders to offer their church and community
3. Financial Counseling, in one or more virtual sessions to provide triage or urgent guidance with current financial challenges, can be arranged with financial counselor, Sarah Swantner, at no charge for up to six sessions. Call Sarah Swantner, certified financial counselor, Black Hills Integrative Counseling and Coaching, and certified financial planner with Kahler Financial Group, directly at 605-519-6141, or by email. Learn more about Sarah here. For more information about financial counseling or connecting with a financial counselor, contact Diane Owen at 507-244-0311, or email.
4. Investing in Leaders Resource Grant: The grant offers an annual financial award towards education debt reduction and connects clergy to the knowledge, skills, and resources needed to achieve financial health goals. The 2021 application with guidelines will be posted early 2021. Review last year’s grant program here.
5. Nonprofit Church Leadership certificate program for clergy: Clergy may apply in early 2021 for this year-long, online graduate certificate program through Dakota Wesleyan University designed to increase competencies in leadership. View summaries of the Applied Projects presented by the participating pastors in 2019 and in 2020. Applicants will need to ask the Leadership Team of their church to complete this Endorsement of Participation. Learn more about the program by viewing last year’s application.
- View the 2020-2021 program year calendar here.
- See the description of the certificate program here.
- View the summaries of the 2019-2020 cohort here.
- See summaries of the applied projects presented by the participating pastors in the 2018-2019 cohort here.
Clergy Benefits Academy and revitup! The COVID-19 pandemic required the cancellation of these events in 2020. Stay tune for more information regarding opportunities in 2021. Scholarship funds are available to assist clergy in attending. In the meantime, refer to upcoming webinars to improve your financial health hosted by Wespath.
EY Financial Services provides access at no charge to a financial planner if you are enrolled. Obtain access to the helpful webinar, “Navigating Finances in Turbulent Times”. Explore EY Financial Planning Services.
Financial Counseling, in one or more virtual sessions to provide triage or urgent guidance with current financial challenges, can be arranged with financial counselor, Sarah Swantner, (trained to assist with the emotional and technical challenges of financial distress) at no charge, for up to six sessions. Call Sarah Swantner, certified financial counselor and planner with Kahler Financial Group, directly at 605-343-1400, ext 113, or e-mail her. (Sarah has been working with several Dakotas clergy around their financial needs and participated in the Higher Ground retreat.) For more information about financial counseling or connecting with a financial counselor, call Diane Owen, Area Director of Financial Health and Well-being, at 507-244-0311, or e-mail.
LSS Financial Services provides a wide variety of financial resources at no charge and counseling at $30. Center for Financial Services with LSS can be found here.
"Money Matters" e-newsletter
To better provide you with timely and helpful resources about money matters, the "Money Matters" quarterly e-newsletter is shared with all clergy in the Dakotas and Minnesota Annual Conferences. The purpose of the e-newsletter is to offer information about opportunities and resources that could help clergy's financial health and well-being. Some of these resources apply to only clergy, and some are financial opportunities for the local church.