2017 End-of-Year Appeal by Board President Tom Rhein

Feast of the Martyr Sebastian & His Companions

Please take a few moments to read our end-of-year annual appeal by Tom Rhein, President of the Eighth Day Institute Board of Directors:

Tom_Rhein_300x300.jpegDEAR FRIENDS

When I wrote my first appeal letter in the fall of 2014, I focused on the ways in which Eighth Day Institute had become a home for my ecumenical family, a source of hope for our culture, and a wellspring of opportunities for us all to grow in holiness. Today it remains all those things, but with the benefit of a few years at the helm I've learned that it’s a few other things as well. 

IT'S A HARD SELL. I’ll be the very first to admit that asking hard-working people to give up their hard-earned money to support our work can be a real struggle. I have no heartwarming photos of hungry children being fed, no testimonials of hundreds converted to Christ, nor any cure for cancer on our horizon. The world is full of desperate needs, and I’m wholly aware that hosting symposia and facilitating the Hall of Men may not seem like the highest priority when allocating one’s limited resources. (Note: should yours happen to be unlimited, please dial the number at the end of this letter, pronto!) Nevertheless, here I am, hat in hand, asking you to find a place for us somewhere in your giving plans this year. I’m here because

  • I believe that what Erin has created is something beautiful;
  • I believe Eighth Day Institute is uniquely necessary at this time in history;
  • And I believe it’s the small, mustard-seed efforts like ours that ultimately have the greatest hope of effecting the kind of cultural renewal we so desperately need.  

IT'S HEADED IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. If you’ve been around EDI for a few years you know how challenging it’s been to make it this far. It’s been a test of endurance for everyone involved, but I’m happy to say that we’re making significant progress. The transition from an all-volunteer venture with 8 members to a functioning institute with an employed director and 188 members has been a huge effort, but we’re finally there. Erin’s dissertation is written, our membership funding continues to grow, our board is busy implementing a new strategic plan for development, and our work is garnering national recognition as a model for cultural renewal.  

IT'S IN YOUR HANDS. Without you there is no Eighth Day Institute. Period. Culture requires community, and so does cultural renewal. I can personally attest to the huge effort that’s required to pull off multiple major events annually, along with a host of routine gatherings, a website, and a journal, not to mention the more prosaic elements like keeping the lights on and the IRS happy. None of the above would be feasible without a full-time director and a world-class community of donors and volunteers. If the idea of having speakers like Joseph Pearce, Ken Myers, and James K. A. Smith in Wichita in 2018 excites you, then help us ensure that they’ll be here by making it possible for us to be here with your generous support! If dialogues of love like the Hall of Men, Sisters of Sophia, and our annual feasts and symposia seem like critical components of a renewed culture, then show it by showing up! If you see opportunities for us to improve (Lord knows they’re legion!), then help us make those improvements by bringing your talents to the table. 

We are wholly indebted to each and every one of you, and our gratitude for your generosity these past nine years can never be adequately expressed. We thank you, we beg your continued prayers, and we humbly ask for a generous gift as you plan your end-of-year giving. 

Please keep in mind that 95% of our funding comes from donors like you.

One-time donations of any amount are greatly appreciated but please do consider contributing to our long-term stability with a monthly gift.

Our work of renewing culture truly does depend on you.

With sincerest thanks,

Tom Rhein
Eighth Day Institute – President 

P.S. Thanks to so many of you, we've made remarkable progress in our funding this fall. Of the $40,000 we need to raise before the end of this year, we've raised $15,735. You can help us reach that goal and continue renewing culture by making your end-of-year gift today.




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