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It’s chocolate AND children, says empty tomb®, inc.’s Mission Match®

empty tomb, inc.

Church members can have their chocolate and help dying children, too, according to
empty tomb’s Mission Match

The choice is not between enjoying chocolate and reducing global child deaths, says empty tomb, inc.’s Mission Match project. It can be a both/and success story.

Americans spend about $30 billion a year on chocolate.  In 2018, that amounted to $91 a person, for example. empty tomb’s Mission Match is designed to help church members want to give another $106 to help, in Jesus’ name, reduce global child deaths.

Here is a list of average annual per-person spending statistics in the U.S.:

– Chocolate (2018): $91

– Greeting cards (2020): $21

– Teeth whitening (2015): $34

– Self-storage Units (2020): $120

– Jewelry and watches (2018): $251

– Soft drinks (2020): $815

The Mission Match effort is designed to show church members can have their chocolate and save more children’s lives, too.

According to an analysis in empty tomb’s The State of Church Giving through 2018, $16 billion a year is needed for church people to help, in Jesus’ name, stop 1.2 million under-5 child deaths each year. That works out to $106 a year per church member.

That amount would be even less if empty tomb’s Mission Match is able to provide a matching amount. The cost would then be $53 per church member.

Since 2002, congregations that designed mission projects of any type could apply for matching funds from Mission Match.

As of 2018, the Mission Match focus has shifted to reducing the number of child deaths in 40 countries. These 40 countries were behind the curve in meeting their 2015 target reduction goals for preventing child deaths. Now the goal is to help these countries reach target reduction goals by 2025.

The problem does not seem to be that the children are too expensive to save, given the spending statistics above. The problem seems to be one of vision and leadership, according to empty tomb, inc.

So empty tomb is working to locate entrepreneurial philanthropists who can help roll out the Mission Match vision. Through Mission Match, churches are encouraged to support projects through a distribution channel of their choice. The projects are focused on reducing, in Jesus’ name, child deaths in one of the 40 countries. The churches then apply for Mission Match matching funds, provided by the small group of venture philanthropists. A total of $9.412 billion is the goal to match churches’ projects, and to lay the groundwork for an expanded source of matching funds.

More information about Mission Match can be found at The 40 Countries page lists the focus countries, and the Both/And page describes the potential for making a difference.

The 30th edition in empty tomb’s series, The State of Church Giving through 2018: What If Jesus Comes Back in 2025? (December 2020), is available from Wipf and Stock Publishers.


Reference Resources:

– Chocolate spending — “U.S. chocolate market size … 2018, $29.72 billion.”:  Grandview Research; “Market Analysis Report: Chocolate Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Traditional, Artificial), By Distribution Channel (Supermarket & Hypermarket, Convenience Store, Online), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2020-2027”; May 2020; p. 1 of 5/1/2021 10:20 AM.

– Greeting cards — “Annual retail sales of greetings cards are estimated between $7 and $8 billion.”:  Greeting Card Association; “Greeting Cards – Info to Know”; 2/1/2020; p. 1 of 5/1/2021 printout.

– Teeth whitening — “The teeth-whitening industry had $11 billion in sales in 2015.”:  Amy Freeman; “Smart Money: How Much Does It Cost to Have Your Teeth Whitened?”;; 7/7/2017; p. 1 of 5/1/2021 1:24 PM printout.

– Self-storage units — “Annual industry revenue: $39.5 billion.”:  Alexander Harris; “U.S. Self-Storage Industry Statistics”;; updated 1/27/2021; p. 1 of 5/1/2021 11:10 AM printout.

– Jewelry and watches — “According to the bureau’s figures for 2018, spending on jewelry and watches (both fine and costume) totaled $82.53 billion …”:  Brecken Branstrator; “US Jewelry, Watch Spending Rose 7% Last Year”; National Jeweler; 4/11/2019; p. 3 of 5/1/2021 1:30 PM printout.

– Soft drinks — “The Soft Drinks market in the U.S. is estimated at US $269.6 Billion in the year 2020.”: “Global Soft Drinks Industry”; GlobeNewsWire; 7/8/2020; p. 1 of 5/1/2021 2:00 PM printout.

Sylvia Ronsvalle
empty tomb, inc.
[email protected]

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Religion News Service or Religion News Foundation.

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