Westmont Magazine New Programs Serve Pastors
$1 Million Lilly Endowment Grant Provides Support for Pastors
Pastors beginning their professional lives and those in the middle of their careers can find support through Frontiers, a new Westmont program funded by a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc.’s Thriving in Ministry initiative. Lilly seeks to help pastors build relationships with experienced clergy who can serve as mentors and guide them through key leadership challenges.
“We share Lilly Endowment’s concern that, while the life of ministry is a crucial calling, pastors face a unique set of pressures as they seek meaning and balance in their professional, spiritual and personal lives,” says President Gayle D. Beebe. “We’re grateful for the chance to join them in addressing the challenges of ministry, extending the college’s resources to provide deep relationship, intellectual enrichment, and spiritual refreshment to pastors in transition.”
Frontiers includes two programs. The first, New Frontiers, serves pastors beginning their service and seeks to widen their vision for their work and strengthen their commitment to the calling of ministry. The Gaede Institute for the Liberal Arts will direct this program. The second, Next Frontiers, focuses on mid-career pastors who seek renewal and wisdom as they consider new possibilities for service, and the Martin Institute for Christianity and Culture will lead it. Both dimensions of Frontiers offer inspiration and resources to sustain ministers in the long obedience of their profession. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Westmont joins 77 diverse Christian organizations in 29 states participating in the initiative. The traditions represented include mainline and evangelical Protestant, Roman Catholic and Orthodox. Strengthening pastoral leadership in U.S. Christian congregations has been a grant-making priority at Lilly Endowment for nearly 25 years.
Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family —J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons Eli and J.K. Jr. —through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly & Company. The Lilly Endowment is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location that supports community development, education and religion. It works to strengthen the leadership and vitality of Christian congregations throughout the country and to increase the public’s understanding of the role of religion in public life.
The Gaede Institute also oversees Trailhead, a program that encourages high school students to explore how faith can guide their future. In a summer session on campus and through yearlong mentoring, participants discover some of the ways they can unite faith, education and work in a life of significance.