Challenge gift undergirds major scholarship fund


We have something very special going on at Alva First Church. Our folks and Endowment Committee joined together to make a major investment in the future of The United Methodist Church. Our Endowment Committee challenged the congregation to contribute to the Pastor Education Fund, which resulted in collecting about $9,000 from individuals. Our Endowment Committee voted to make the total $50,000, making up the difference from our church’s endowment fund. I’m very proud of our folks for seeing this need and responding to make an investment. I hope it spurs other churches with endowments to do likewise!

— Pastor Terry Martindale of Alva-First

Thank you, church members, Terry, and Endowment Committee at Alva-First UMC, for your vision and commitment to the future of our United Methodist Church. Your gift will be matched by the Milburn Family, doubling its value to $100,000.

A generous family with a vision to recruit and scholarship talented future pastors has offered a challenge grant to Oklahoma United Methodists.

The Milburn Family of Shawnee will match every gift given, dollar-for-dollar, up to $1 million, for the Oklahoma United Methodist Pastor Education Fund.

Today the potential level of debt incurred by seminary study can deter young people from going into full-time pastoral ministry. Some clergy who complete seminary go forward to serve while carrying $50,000 and more in student loan debt. Such an amount is unmanageable, especially challenging for a younger pastor in the first few years of ministry.

As a response to this challenge and with help from the Milburn Family, the Oklahoma United Methodist Foundation created the Oklahoma United Methodist Pastor Education Fund.

Fully funded, the Pastor Education Fund will help recruit outstanding clergy candidates and scholarship them through seminary, removing the burden of debt so they may fully engage in their education and provide effective ministry to transform the world for Christ.

Join us in taking advantage of the Milburns’ generous offer. Make your gift to the Pastor Education Fund.

Call the Foundation at 800-259-6863 or visit the Foundation’s website at  to make your gift or find more information.


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