The goal of the Pathways’ Pilot Parish initiative is to assist these congregations in achieving enhanced sustainability by identifying their unique ministries, building vital congregational teams and developing practical financial and administrative skills.
Funded by Lilly Endowment Inc., representatives from the Pilot Parishes will have an immersive learning experience consisting of an opening retreat, a series of workshops and small group meetings over the course of 18 months starting this summer. “This peer-learning model is based upon action and reflection providing participants with the opportunity to intentionally integrate lessons into their congregational lives,” according to Rev. Dr. Carol Pinkham Oak, Pathways Curricula Consultant.
The central-Indiana Pilot Parishes also will host a curate residency program for Diocesan postulant, Erin Hougland, according to Canon Gray. “This residency program will provide Erin with priestly formation and leadership opportunities giving her the confidence and skills necessary for future parish ministry.”
According Pathways Program Director, Melissa Hickman, the lessons learned from the work of the Pilot Parishes may be adapted and enhanced for other congregations in the future. “We believe the experiences of these parishes will help the Diocese create more transformative programming that supports sustainability, vitality and innovation in our congregations and in our diocese.”