Faith Alive Shares Excess Inventory
Faith Alive Christian Resources is making certain titles from their English and Spanish resources available free to Christian Reformed churches in the United States and Canada.
Through the Faith Alive brand, the Christian Reformed Church in North America provides theologically Reformed resources including Sunday school curriculum, Bible studies, devotions, worship materials, and hymnals to churches in the CRCNA and other denominations.
In recent months, Faith Alive has been offering overstocked inventory to CRC congregations. Churches can choose from a list of titles in a special “overstock” order form and then pay only the shipping costs or pick up the materials from CRCNA offices in Grand Rapids, Mich., or Burlington, Ont.
Resources are available by full box only, to minimize shipping and staff time. Order forms have been sent to churches classis by classis to spread out the workload. In addition, a stipulation has been made that the resources are offered free for ministry use only and may not be resold.
All CRC churches have now been contacted, and so far the resources that have been distributed free include 19,000 books (480 boxes) of 60 different titles to 59 churches across the continent. Congregations from British Columbia to Nova Scotia and New Jersey to California took advantage of the offer between January and August 2021.
The order form includes a question about how churches and ministries intend to use the free resources. Responses so far have included uses for small group Bible study, worship services, free distribution within the church, church libraries, praise teams and children’s choirs, seniors groups, family visits, Sunday school, and more.
One pastor responded, “In September I am preaching on how Christians are to be relational: with God, with other Christians in the church, and with the community. This book will fit so well into how we can be the church in the community, and not just be a building that we invite people to go to. We will use this book in small groups for the fall.”
A church with a creation care initiative said they will use the book Earthwise in connection with environmental programs.
Another church said, “We will share the music books with our families to learn some new songs together at church and also in our homes/online.”
A church in Hudsonville replied, “We are a new Christian Reformed Church for Hispanics. . . . We plan to use these books to evangelize Hispanics in the Grand Rapids area. We also plan to use them for VBS and Sunday school for adults and children.”
Another church had similar plans for Spanish resources, saying, “We will make them available to Spanish speakers in our church . . . followed by Spanish-speaking Christians in our neighborhood.”
Faith Alive staff noted that excess inventory is not unusual in the publishing process, due to changes in sales patterns. Of the approximately 1,000 products available from Faith Alive, only about 60 were offered on the “overstock” order form -- and only to Christian Reformed churches. Churches and ministries outside of the CRC continue to purchase these products at regular prices.
Tim Postuma, a codirector of Ministry Support Services who works with Faith Alive, helped to get the word out about the free resources available. He noted, “Often excess inventory is recycled, but we wanted to see it put to better use, if possible. . . . We're glad that these 19,000 books will be used well by our churches.”
Has your church looked into this opportunity? Christian Reformed churches can still order using this form for a limited time.