In 2018, the School of Theology at the University of the South (Sewanee) received a generous grant from the Lilly Foundation to establish a clergy mentoring program. In September 2019, the Sewanee Ministry Collaborative began with its first annual ministry summit. 26 participants from all over the world came together in Sewanee to support and mentor one another and work toward greater flourishing for themselves and their ministries. The Collaborative is now accepting applications for the next cohort, to begin this year.
The Sewanee Ministry Collaborative establishes mutual mentoring groups for clergy in four contexts: Latino/Hispanic ministries, Black ministries, rural ministries, and clergy formed in non-traditional theological education, with a special focus on women across all four groups. The purpose of these groups is to provide a means for clergy to empower one another to flourish in their particular contexts – that is, to have a renewed sense of call to ministry in a particular community.
Participants commit to the Collaborative for three years. Each year begins with a ministry summit, where participants will work in small and large groups to learn tools for flourishing individually and collectively. The content of these workshops is designed to address the particular needs of each group by a team of experienced leaders with expertise in a wide range of ministry contexts.
This year’s summit is scheduled to take place at Camp Allen in Navasota, TX, September 15-18. This gathering will still happen in some form, whether face-to-face or virtually, at that time. Since participants join the program for 3 years, they will be able to attend face-to-face summits in future years. Between Ministry Summits, groups meet virtually and in person to continue supporting one another’s ministries.
The Collaborative is currently soliciting applications for participants and conveners in the Collaborative. Conveners will be members of the mentoring groups that coordinate and facilitate the work of the groups. They will need to be available for an additional training session, September 13-15, and will receive an additional honorarium. The only cost to participants is a $100/year contribution to a travel expense pool.
For more information and to complete an application, please visit www.smc.sewanee.edu, or contact Andrew Thompson, Director of the Sewanee Ministry Collaborative, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 931-598-1627.