The Center for Leadership Excellence offers a number of programs, on both a regular and rotating basis, with the unified goal of equipping clergy and laity in the work of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. If you are interested in learning more about any of these programs, please reach out to Leah Wiebe-Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current and Ongoing Programs
The Leadership Fellows Program is a two-year commitment made by a clergy-laity pair, which includes a retreat and over 50 hours of facilitated training per year. Fellows are also assigned a coach to help connect classroom learnings with the ministry context. The Fellows year begins in the fall. Those who are interested in beginning in 2021 should reach out to Leah Wiebe-Smith, email@example.com, no later than June 7, 2021.
Funded by The Duke Endowment, Impact : A Rural Church Development Program explores what it is like to be a smaller membership rural church and builds on rural heritage so that churches thrive. The first cohort, a group of churches in the Harbor District, will complete the program in the summer of 2021. Any churches interested in participating in a future cohort should reach out to Leah Wiebe-Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org.
In December 2020, the Center for Leadership Excellence teamed up with the Rev. Lisa Yebuah to host Manna: Soul Tending Space for Pastors, a 3-session soul-tending platform for pastors to name and even grieve the realities of clergy life during these stressful times, while also acquiring spiritual practices to buoy their hope. These sessions are pre-recorded and can be completed individually or in the context of a small group on the pastor’s own schedule.
Other Programs and Collaborations
The Center for Leadership Excellence is open to collaborations and partnerships in any efforts to equip clergy and laity. If you are interested in partnering with the Center for Leadership Excellence for any programs or events, please reach out to Leah Wiebe-Smith, email@example.com.
During 2019-2020, the Center for Leadership Excellence teamed up with the Commission on the Status and Role of Women to offer a year-long mentorship program for women in ministry, Bold: Nurture, Empower, and Equip. The program began with a retreat and then paired two women in ministry, with the intention of creating strong relationships with women who are committed to listening deeply and responding empathetically to other women pastors.
Envisioned and created by the Strengthening the Black Church Committee, Renew and Connect: Transforming the Black Church aimed to engage African American churches (clergy and a larger lay team of 5-8) in four one-day retreats during 2019-2020. Intended to foster relational connections within and between congregations, these creative and energetic retreats focused on cultivating new, yet sustainable, ministry approaches. Moreover, each retreat was paired with coaching in between sessions to provide resourcing, continued planning, and an accountability model.