Following a powerful partnership journey to Tanzania, the United Methodists of Greater New Jersey (GNJ) have set forth on an ambitious mission: the “For Tanzania 2024” campaign. The campaign, set to run until December 31, 2023, seeks to raise $100,000, which will aid in constructing a new church building in Dar es Salaam ($60,000) and provide a year’s worth of living wages to all Tanzanian pastors ($40,000).
If you and your church are looking for the next back-to-school campaign or special Christmas offering to practice radical generosity in your community, we invite you to read on — because this campaign may be for you.
A Deep-rooted Partnership
The recent trip by the GNJ leaders to Tanzania wasn’t their first venture into this collaborative spiritual mission. A similar undertaking was the “Miracles Everywhere Campaign” in 2018, more than five years ago. This campaign successfully raised $500,000 for Tanzania. The funds were smartly invested by the Tanzania Annual Conference, helping facilitate the annual Tanzania Pastor’s School and other crucial church initiatives.
However, the recent visit brought to the forefront certain pressing needs within the Tanzanian church. This campaign is the fruition of those needs and the GNJ’s commitment to fostering this partnership.
The Dual Mission
- Build Churches: With a fundraising goal of $60,000, GNJ seeks to establish a church building at the Mission Center in Dar es Salaam. This city, the largest in Tanzania, witnesses a congregation gathering fervently near the UMC Mission Center. The funds will aid in constructing a robust facility, replete with a sanctuary, pastor’s office, and spaces dedicated to Sunday School and community activity. This church building will serve as a beacon of hope and a place of worship for the local community, providing a sanctuary for spiritual growth and a hub for transformative ministries.
- Pay Pastors: A significant revelation during the GNJ’s visit was the meager salary of Tanzanian pastors. An average Tanzanian pastor earns 63 USD annually. Many, unfortunately, don’t get paid by their churches, yet served the local church with passion and fervor. With $1,200 annually sufficing as a living wage, the campaign seeks to raise $40,000. This sum will ensure every United Methodist pastor in Tanzania can dedicate themselves entirely to ministry without the shadow of financial uncertainty for a whole year.
Join the Mission
GNJ is tapping into its faith community’s inherent generosity and vision for a world transformed by spiritual solidarity. The leaders believe that if half of the churches in GNJ commit to donating $500 each, the collective dream of building a church and supporting Tanzanian pastors can become a reality.
To facilitate congregations and leaders in participating, GNJ will roll out an array of resources, including liturgy, videos, graphics, and worship elements through Breakthrough. These will be accessible via their dedicated campaign webpage: gnjumc.org/fortanzania. The platform will be regularly updated with fresh resources to help participants champion the campaign in their unique contexts.
“Whether it is for a back-to-school campaign, a Giving Tuesday fundraising, or a special Christmas offering, feel free to take the resources, edit it, adjust it, and use however much you’d like to promote this campaign in your local context,” shares GNJ’s Director of Connectional Ministries Eric Drew in a video introducing the campaign [watch here – and download it to play in your church!].
A United Vision
The “For Tanzania 2024” campaign is not just about buildings and salaries. It’s a testament to the bond between the United Methodists of Greater New Jersey and the United Methodist Church of Tanzania. Through collaborative efforts, mutual respect, and shared vision, both communities seek to foster growth, empower leaders, and bring alive the hope and connection symbolized by the iconic Cross and Flame.
Join in this transformative journey and help make a difference in the lives of our Tanzanian siblings in Christ. Your support and generosity are crucial in making this mission a resounding success. Go to gnjumc.org/fortanzania to learn more.