About ECM

About ECM

Bishop Thomas Breidenthal established the Episcopal Community Ministries (ECM) as part of the Diocese of Southern Ohio’s missionary work. ECM is a major source of grants for congregational ministries working to help our Ohio neighbors overcome several life challenges.

It is ECM’s mission to inspire and support each other in the living out of our Baptismal Covenant through active, generous, and committed congregations and their outward-looking ministries.

What does the ECM logo symbolize?

ECM’s logo comes from the Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes. Reported in all four Gospels, this story starts with the disciples suggesting Jesus withdraw from a hungry crowd. “There is no need to turn them away,” he said. “Give them something to eat yourselves” (Matthew 14:16). They presented a gift from a generous boy and 5,000+ people were nourished from a pocketful of food.

How is ECM funded?

Our budget comes from the generous donations of fellow Episcopalians, and an annual draw established by the Trustees of the Diocese from the Blanchard Memorial Endowment Fund.

During the corona virus crisis, please consider a donation to the ECM Covid-19 Relief Fund.

Who serves on the ECM committee?

Bishop Thomas Breidenthal; Rev. Dr. Ellen Cook, Chair; Rev. Allison English; Ms. Rae Fellows; Mr. Don Lane; Rev. Joanna Leisersonl Mr. Jim Murray; Ms. Jane Paraskevopoulos; Rev. Deborah Woolsey

Bishop’s Staff – Carine de Lange, Diocese Liaison;  Andrea Owens, Administrative Assistant

The primary focus of the members of the Ministry will be to review the applications and to submit recommendations for grants to the Bishop’s office.  The ECM Committee meets at least quarterly and more often as needed.

Who should apply for an ECM grant?

  • Congregations in good standing in the Diocese of Southern Ohio.
  • A ministry addressing a community need within the Diocese of Southern Ohio.
  • A ministry that is congregationally based, or has a collaborative partnership with another denomination/congregation, or is in a participative partnership with another community nonprofit ministry/organization.

What types of ministries are eligible for funding?

  • Food and Food Security – food pantries; community meals and feeding programs; and community gardens
  • Housing – emergency shelters; utility, rent or mortgage assistance; and assistance in applying for government programs, such as Section 8 housing and the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)
  • Education and Life Skills – job readiness skills, GED classes, applying for government assistance programs and job placement programs; study skills; health and nutrition; tutoring (especially for children/youth at risk); and literacy programs
  • Emergency Assistance – meeting the immediate needs of individuals and families; clothing assistance programs; transportation assistance; and disaster relief
  • Youth at Risk – rehabilitation and education
  • Social Justice – to affirm the dignity of every person

Note: During the emergency Covid-19 application review, ECM is limiting applications to programs focusing on Food Security, Housing and Emergency Assistance.

What does ECM not provide funding for?

  • Capital campaigns
  • Construction/remodeling
  • Salaries
  • Building expenses
  • Projects appropriately addressed by other Diocesan funding sources