The Discouragement of Rejection and the Freedom of Letting Go

Discouraged grant-writer man at a computer

The Discouragement of Rejection and the Freedom of Letting Go

By: Artie Pingolt

This blog is written for the frustrated and discouraged grant-writers. It can be frustrating when we put in great effort to write smart proposals for good and holy projects serving poor and suffering people, only to be rejected by the funders we applied to.

The feelings are real, they cannot be prevented and should not be denied.  How we respond to these feelings is our choice, however.

For me, it becomes a time of self-talk, self-coaching and taking my feelings to a healthy place: HUMILITY AND TRUST IN GOD.

I offer the following reflections from my own background, which has been influenced by the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate and the Society of Jesus (Jesuits):

“But I do not approve of the discouragement into which I believe you have fallen.  If you analyze it carefully, you will find that it is caused by pride. The Lord has given you the sublime mission to sow, to plant and to water.  He reserves Himself the growth and the harvest, when and how it pleases Him. Do then, what you are charged to do and leave to God what can only belong to Him.”
          -St. Eugene de Mazenod  Founder, Missionary Oblates  1840 Letter

“Pray as though everything depended upon God and act as though everything depended upon you.”
          –St. Ignatius of Loyola (sometimes attributed to St. Augustine)

Once the application is submitted we have done all that we can.  Assume that some applications will succeed, but plan that many of them will fail, or perhaps “make room” for some other project to be funded.

I end this blog on a good note, from St. Oscar Romero whose Feast Day is soon, March 24:

“We cannot do everything and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that!”


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