By Tim Dyck, EMC Executive Director
Many people sitting in the pews at EMC churches (or watching online) may not be aware of the existence of an organization called EMC Project Builders. So, if you haven’t heard of it, you’re not alone—but you may be missing out!
In 1973, a group of men and women gathered to raise funds for a radio station in Paraguay known as ZP-30. This radio station was a much-needed ministry tool for sharing the good news of Jesus Christ in the Chaco region of Paraguay. However, the cost of building a station was much more than what EMC could normally provide.
This was how the Missions Auxiliary was formed. For several years, large sums of money were contributed to the development and expansion of ZP-30. Regular church attenders and businesspeople gave as they were able, and the radio station was established. It is still in operation today, continuing the original mandate to proclaim the gospel through the airwaves.
The idea had been formed, and other projects needed funding, so the Missions Auxiliary continued to raise funds for a myriad of projects. In December 2006, the name was changed to Project Builders, to reflect the organization’s purpose more accurately.
Throughout the years, millions of dollars have been contributed to hundreds of worthwhile capital projects. Each year, projects are submitted by EMC missionaries and are assessed based on criteria established by an executive of the Project Builders membership. Membership is open to anyone who wants to contribute to this worthy endeavour. Each member is asked to contribute $250 annually, but many donate above this amount.
Another means of funding projects is the annual Project Builders Golf Tournament, generally hosted in Steinbach. This golf tournament has been taking place for over 26 years and is growing in both participation levels and funds raised. It is a great opportunity to have fun while supporting projects with a purpose.
An annual general meeting of the membership takes place in November, where recently completed projects are celebrated, and new projects are presented. The AGM also elects the members of the executive, who meet throughout the year to carry out the ministry between the annual meetings. The last two years these membership meetings have been conducted online, and we look forward to being able to meet in person this fall.
Project Builders matters because it funds ministry projects and programs that support evangelism, develop the local church, and disciple believers. If you would like to know more about Project Builders, or would like to become a member, check out www.emconference.ca/project-builders. And don’t keep this secret to yourself—tell your friends!