From Oak Tree Communications:
Jim Mullaney is a creative Christian businessman with a heart for ministry.
He and an ecumenical board of Christian leaders based at the Lindenwald United Methodist Church in Fairfield are expanding their five-year-old kettle corn BIZNISTRY nationwide to benefit nonprofits and help shine the light of Christ in places where it isn’t normally visible.
The ministry, a nonprofit organization called Christian Ministry Campus, Inc., attends about 25 outdoor festivals and other events each year and sells $5 bags and $6 tubs of freshly-made kettle corn out of an “Amaizing Grace”-branded kettle corn booth. Volunteers at nonprofit organizations help staff the booth and 20 percent of profits go to their organizations; another 20 percent goes to the event host organization.
Revenues awarded to nonprofits have been “popping good:” Amaizing Grace has generated $185,000 over the past five years and awarded $60,000 to local ministries and host organizations. The rest of revenue goes for supplies, equipment costs, and to expand the organization.
Each bag or bucket of kettle corn contains a salvation message meant to encourage people to turn to Christ, said Mullaney.
“We focus in the booth on how to be good Christian ministers,” said Mullaney. “We touch thousands of people at each event.”
At the 2015 Columbus Oktoberfest for example, Mullaney chatted with a woman on crutches and asked how her recovery was going. When she admitted it was a slow go, Mullaney asked if she would like volunteers to pray for her.
She agreed, and the Amaizing Grace group gathered around and said a healing prayer for her. People standing nearby waiting in other lines were astonished, said Mullaney. Her husband came up to him afterward with tears in his eyes and thanked him for the prayer.
“Some people may criticize us for working festivals and events where beer is served,” said Mullaney. “But those places are where Jesus would be—where people may have a deep spiritual need and not normally hear the Word. That’s where Christ wants us to be.”
Amaizing Grace kettle corn sales are a great way for youth groups to earn money for mission trips as well as learn how to make change and run a business, said Mullaney. He said he and the board are ready to go big with the BIZNISTRY and expand to large venues and theme parks. Recent weekend sales during the four weeks of Advent netted the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky., netted about $8,000 for its ministry, he said.
Mullaney said he got the idea to start a BIZNISTRY when he joined At Work on Purpose, a Blue Ash-based nonprofit dedicated to helping working Christians live out their faith lives at work. He worked with Chuck Proudfit, AWOP founder and president, to develop a sustainable business plan that allowed for excess profits to go to Christian nonprofits.
“The Amaizing Grace ministry hits the bullseye for what we’re trying to achieve with At Work on Purpose,” said Proudfit.
“Jim has developed a delicious, popular product that people love, and he’s inspiring others to seek the Word of God in the process.”
At Work on Purpose, along with Self-Sustaining Enterprises at Grace Chapel in Mason, supports four BIZNISTRIES: the New2You Thrift Store and Mason Food Pantry; Crossfit Superfly; and the Trinity Salon and Spa. Each of the four businesses are financially sustainable, have paid employees, and dedicate excess profits to ministry.
“None of us get a dime for any of the work we do in the booth,” said Mullaney. “This is hard work that we do to help others raise money for their organizations. Every time I do this, I thank God I don’t have to do it for a living. But I get a rush out of it; it’s rewarding and great fun.”
Mullaney is the founder and president of Edoc Service, a virtual company that offers tools and services for greater productivity & collaboration.