15 February 2007

Fund for World Mission giving rises

Giving to the Methodist Church Fund for World Mission grew by nearly £700,000 in the last Connexional Year, reaching £5.7 million. The increase followed a call for more giving to the fund made by Revd Stephen Poxon, Secretary of the Methodist Missionary Society, at the 2005 Methodist Conference.

For the year to August 31, the Fund had total income of £5.7 million, up from £5.1 million the year before. At the 2005 Conference Stephen Poxon challenged Methodists to increase their giving to the Fund by £1 million, and although this target has not yet been met, he says he is delighted by the response. 'In 2005 I asked for a big increase,' Stephen says, 'and that is clearly what we got. This money will go to a wide variety of programmes around the world, aiding people in need and allowing us to support our partner churches in their work.'

Michael King, World Church Team Leader, thanked the many different groups who contribute to the Fund. 'All parts of the Church,' he says, 'including JMA and Women's Network, have worked hard to achieve this wonderful result. The increase in giving demonstrates the confidence of Methodist church members in Britain and Ireland in the mission programmes jointly agreed with partner churches.'

Income for the Methodist Church Fund for Home Mission fell in the same period, mainly due to a decrease in legacy bequests. Its total income for the year was £863,000. The Revd Ken Howcroft, Co-ordinating Secretary for Conference and Communication, said, 'the wonderful response to Stephen's call in 2005 shows how gladly Methodists respond to a challenge. We are keen to develop our advocacy of all our work and of all our funds, both restricted and general. We firmly believe in the importance of all the Methodist funds and the work they support within the Connexion, across Britain and around the world.'

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