The Compelling Preaching Coordination Program celebrates the unique contributions that very different kinds of institutions— congregations, denominations, seminaries, universities, colleges, non-profit organizations, informal peer leader learning groups— can make to strengthening the ecology of North American Christianity, while discerning how we can collaborate for greater fruitfulness.

Compelling Preaching Initiative Grantees

The National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC) will engage Hispanic pastors in spiritual formation experiences and equip them with preaching skills to guide congregants into deeper levels of discipleship. The NHCLC will offer online courses on preaching, three-day intensive preacher training institutes, regional sessions with breakout cohorts for preachers, spiritual retreats, and a variety of preaching resources. Grant awarded in 2022.

The NEXT Church, a network within the Presbyterian Church (USA), will form cohorts of preachers and congregational leaders that will explore what makes preaching effective and how it can impact positive transformations in their communities. Cohort groups will focus on the sermon planning process, feedback conversations, preaching skills development and evaluation. Grant awarded in 2022.

The North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, in collaboration with Curanopy Ministries, will offer preachers short sabbatical experiences to renew their passion for preaching, provide six to eight-week intensive training preaching courses, host retreats to deepen preachers’ relationships with God and scripture, facilitate peer gatherings for preachers to build relationships and write sermons together in community and organize preaching-focused pilgrimage experiences for pastors. Grant awarded in 2023.

North Central University will serve diverse current and aspiring Pentecostal preachers in city settings through its new Preaching Institute for City Transformation Affinity-based cohorts will serve current pastors through an annual retreat and a yearlong series of virtual meetingsAn annual preaching conference at NCU will also serve pastors and provide an onramp into other programming, including a new academic major in City Preaching and Ministry Leadership. Grant awarded in 2024.  

The Omaha Presbyterian Seminary Foundation will establish a new center to cultivate and support effective preaching practices in congregations in Mid-America. Program activities will include annual in-person preaching intensives for seasoned preachers, an online certificate program in preaching for congregational lay leaders and commissioned pastors in training, and peer learning cohorts for pastors to strengthen and support effective preaching practices. Grant awarded in 2023.

Palm Beach Atlantic University (PBA) will facilitate peer groups known as Circles of Preachers to provide feedback and formation opportunities. These circles will feed into (and back out from) a large in-person annual Preaching FestivalA new Florida College of Preachers will be created as an honor society of preachers in Florida who will provide leadership and share their gifts with the Circles and the Festival. PBA will also enhance certificate and degree offerings with a preaching focus. Grant awarded in 2024.  

The Passionist Missionaries, working in collaboration with Sunday to Sunday Productions, will train 2,384 Catholic homilists through its CALLED cohorts. Each cohort will provide a supportive community, 1:1 coaching, immersive internships, and collaborative online learning onlineSunday to Sunday and the Passionists will also continue to develop preaching resources for Catholic preachers. Grant awarded in 2024. 

Pentecostal Churches of the Apostolic Faith International Inc. (PCAFI) will offer a new designated educational track twice a year during PCAFI’s annual conferences as well as cohorts for preachers/faith communicators of the PCAFI. Cohorts will work with an assigned preaching coach. The PCAFI will also offer online and on-demand curated educational resources. Grant awarded in 2024. 

Pepperdine University will host intensive preaching workshops for active preachers, produce preaching-focused podcasts and newsletters for preachers, expand its Next Gen Preacher Search programs for high school and college-aged Christians considering the preaching vocation, develop programming on effective communication practices for youth and youth ministers, create video training series for pastors on effective communication practices. Grant awarded in 2022.

Pittsburgh Theological Seminary will convene preachers from both established congregations and emerging faith communities for twelve months of intensive spiritual formation and vocational discernment, classroom and contextual learning, as well as structured preaching experiments and capstone projects. Participants will integrate their learning in a final project that embodies discernment-shaped preaching for a post-Christian context. Grant awarded in 2024.  

Point University will launch a new center to foster more powerful and relevant preaching. The center will gather preachers into communities of practice to receive feedback on their sermons, try out new modes of preaching, and experiment with delivering sermons through new social and digital media. In addition, the center will facilitate retreats for preachers, organize annual preaching conferences, and host smaller seminars on preaching. Grant awarded in 2023.

Presbyterian Theological Seminary in America will enrich the preaching practices in Korean American immigrant churches by developing and offering new classes and seminars focused on effective methods of preaching in Korean American contexts, launching new courses for pastors on how to use digital and other media to reach people in post-pandemic church environments, designing new classes specifically for lay leaders to help them become compelling preachers, and conducting research to evaluate shifts in Korean American preaching. Grant awarded in 2023.

The Presbytery of Philadelphia aims to strengthen the preaching practices of and give encouragement to lay leaders who are more frequently filling pulpits in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and help pastors adapt their preaching practices to rapid cultural changes. The program will offer learning cohorts, retreats, monthly workshops, one-on-one sermon coaching and preaching conferences as well as opportunities to learn from experts about digital technologies and their use. Grant awarded in 2023.

The Progressive National Baptist Convention (PNBC) will build sessions into its national gatherings as well as its Eastern, Midwestern, Southern and Southwestern regional meetings that feature exemplary preachers and teachers who will make presentations about effective preaching and lead workshops. The PNBC will also offer two-day events in 15 cities across the United States that will provide pastors with peer evaluations and serve as the launchpads for the formation of peer-to-peer preaching groups in local areas. Grant awarded in 2022.

Redeemer City to City will build on its established national network of urban congregations to train pastors who come from and serve in diverse ministry contexts. Program activities will include annual peer learning cohorts of preachers, immersive events focused on preaching in different contexts, coaching and sermon feedback for preachers, in-depth virtual training events on effective preaching, and annual symposia on preaching for cohort participants as well as additional local preachers. Grant awarded in 2023.