The Society for the Increase of the Ministry (SIM) Elects New Officers, Reports Record Grants at Its Annual Board Meeting

The Society for the Increase of the Ministry (SIM) held its annual meeting - new officers are elected and reports record grants.

West Hartford, CT, June 13, 2010 --( The annual Board Meeting for the Society for the Increase of the Ministry (SIM) was held in Hartford, Connecticut on May 25th at Diocesan House, the offices of the Diocese of Connecticut. Business included thanking dedicated members whose terms expired, re-electing three board members and electing a new member, bringing the total number of directors to 15 to guide the 153 year old ministry of SIM. SIM’s mission is to organize and provide financial, pastoral and advocacy support to those preparing for ordained parish and chaplaincy ministries in The Episcopal Church.

Board members have their work cut-out for them, as SIM is the only organization in The Episcopal Church actively raising funds nationally to support seminarians. SIM’s unique support is offered in financial grants, pastoral presence and prayers, and advocacy in the councils of the Church. Its advocacy efforts reached a significant milestone in the past year when the 2009 General Convention selected SIM to administer $200,000 in the 2010-2013 triennium budget for relief of seminarian debt.

The Board paid tribute to three hard-working members whose terms expired. Board Chair Dr. Marnie Mueller was presented a gift and thanked for her six years of guiding SIM. Board member, the Reverend Canon Richard F. Tombaugh, was elected to a one year term as Chair while remaining Chair of the Development Committee. The terms of Board members Mrs. Marge Cunningham and the Reverend Amy L. Fallon also expired.

Three members were reelected to three year terms: William Dunakin, the Reverend Ernestein Flemister, and the Reverend Dr. James B. Lemler. The Reverend David C. Cobb was elected to the board and named Chair of the Scholarship Committee. The new Bishop of Connecticut, the Right Reverend Ian T. Douglas, joined Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori as an Honorary Director.

The Scholarship Committee reported the awarding of $251,000 in financial support for the coming academic year to 87 grateful Episcopal seminarians. The scholarship grants for the 2010/2011 academic year represent SIM’s highest award total ever and reflect an increase in the average individual grant of 18.7% over 2009/2010.

The renewed board then turned their discussion to SIM’s newest initiatives: expanding the reach and capabilities of SIMnet, the online network of seminarians and alumni, via initiatives such as the new SIMnetconnect forum; promoting the renovated Parish Partners Program; introducing video marketing; targeting additional grant opportunities; initiating a monthly giving campaign for relieving seminarian debt and involving board members in SIM’s card ministry program.

The Board is excited about the upcoming year’s communication strategies and marketing initiatives.

For more information on SIM, its mission and newest initiatives please logon to:

Society for the Increase of the Ministry
Cindy Clark
(860) 233-1732