Since a special appeal for the Nigeria crisis at the 2014 Annual Conference in early July, giving to the EYN Compassion Fund topped $168,459, according to the Church of the Brethren finance office. That amount is in addition to the $120,210.45 collected in the first half of this year.
Since its inception, the EYN Compassion Fund has collected donations totaling $305,821.
This fall a new Nigeria Crisis Fund began receiving donations toward a matching challenge of $500,000 from the Church of the Brethren Mission and Ministry Board, and the EYN Compassion Fund is being closed out.
Over the past two years, the EYN Compassion Fund has received more than $288,670 in donations for Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN the Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) and has distributed $201,645.92 to EYN. All the donations received have been sent directly to EYN, except the remaining balance of about $87,000, which will be sent soon.
Large gifts made since July include $17,050 from Lititz (Pa.) Church of the Brethren, and a grant of $10,000 from the United Church of Christ (UCC). A rebate of $8,750 that the Church of the Brethren received from Brotherhood Mutual through the Brethren Mutual Aid Agency, was part of a distribution from the EYN Compassion Fund that was sent to EYN earlier this year.
The money collected in the EYN Compassion Fund was used for a variety of purposes, as determined and distributed by EYN leadership–in particular the EYN Relief Committee and the EYN district church councils. The money helped the families of EYN pastors who lost loved ones or homes or churches in the violence, aided other affected EYN families, and as the insurgency grew also was used for larger food and material aid distributions and helped EYN begin building relocation sites for displaced people.
Prior to receiving donations for this fund, the Church of the Brethren had received donations to help EYN rebuild churches that had been burned in rioting and civil unrest. The EYN Compassion Fund was started to broaden the use for donations when it became clear there was a much greater need emerging in Nigeria.
For more about the new Nigeria Crisis Fund, find a link on the page www.brethren.org/nigeriacrisis .
— Pat Marsh of the Church of the Brethren finance office contributed to this report.