The Tributary Fund

The purpose of the Rocky Mountain Conference is to inspire, challenge, and empower generous faith and justice communities across the West. One way we do this is by supporting people – both ministers and laypersons – who are called to work on behalf of the ministry of Christ in the greater Rocky Mountain area. The Tributary Fund is just one of the tools we use to do this.


A Relational, Conversational Process

When a person is called to ordained ministry, they become a “Member in Discernment” and enters a relational process with a team that helps to affirm, shape, and cultivate the sense of call. The Tributary Fund uses a similar process. Those who see themselves as Call-Bearers for new ministry, new churches, or ministry revitalizations enter a discernment process to affirm and shape the call and help to bring the ministry to fruition.

Entering the Process & Process Expectations

Call-bearers seeking funding and support will first complete the application and submit it to After the Tributary Fund team reviews the application, a member will contact the applicant for an initial conversation and schedule conversations with the team. Applicants should plan for a discernment period of 2 to 4 months.

The discernment process will use a relational conversation model of group discovery and consensus-building. The team will help Call-Bearers assess the sense of call, the extent to which the proposed ministry fits the RMC’s purpose, the levels of readiness and commitment of the team to move the ministry forward, and the long-term sustainability of the proposed ministry. This conversation of possibilities is meant to engage Call-Bearers across the Conference in helping bring into being new ministries, churches, or revitalizations that enable us to be the ministry of Christ.

Funding Cycle and Capacity

Funding applications will be received by April 28 this year, with the discernment conversations beginning soon after. Funding decisions and disbursement of funds generally will be completed six months after the application date.

Each year, the RMC Board will determine funding levels for the Tributary Fund. We expect funding levels will vary from year to year given investment performance and other financial considerations as recommended by the RMC Board’s Finance Committee. If you are seeking a smaller, one-time grant for your new ministry, please check out our In the Mud Grants.

Renewability of Grant Funding

Each grant will be given for a one-year period. Renewal grants for up to two additional years are possible for ministries meeting key milestones as determined jointly by the Call-Bearer and the Tributary Fund Team. To be considered for renewal funding, a Call-Bearer must complete a renewal application, including an assessment of the prior year, by the application deadline stated above.

Application Checklist

  • Download the complete application below.
  • Summary Sheet Form. Use the template provided in the application
  • Project Narrative. Compose your response, include the heading provided for each Narrative Question and the response formatted using 12-point font with 1-inch margins and . Do not repeat the text of the question in your response. Limit your narrative to five (5) pages.
  • Complete the application and submit it to by April 28, 2023.

Thank you for your time and effort in completing this application. We look forward to learning about your plans!

Tributary Fund Videos
At the 2022 Annual Celebration several of the Tributary Funds recipients provided the following videos: