For Such a Time as This: A Small-Church Residency—Growing Leaders, Growing Churches has announced recruitment plans for its next class of residency presbyteries, congregations, and pastoral residents.
Launched by the Presbyterian Mission Agency in fall 2009, For Such a Time as This was designed to renew and grow small churches and help them to become healthy, missional congregations. The program pairs small, underserved congregations in rural, small town, and urban settings with recent seminary graduates in a two-year pastoral-residency relationship, during which they are supported and guided by a cluster of pastor-mentors. Since For Such a Time as This began, 22 recent seminary graduates are serving 26 congregations in 10 presbyteries.
“For Such a Time as This continues to demonstrate some of the key ingredients needed for healthy, growing congregations,” said the Rev. Marcia Clark Myers, director of the PC(USA)’s Office of Vocation—a joint ministry of the Presbyterian Mission Agency and the Office of the General Assembly—which oversees the program. “The growth in our For Such a Time as This churches has been amazing. The congregations are reaching out and welcoming newcomers to the faith. Adults are returning to church, Sunday school and youth programs have been revitalized, children are hearing the good news, adults and children are being baptized, and the Holy Spirit is clearly at work in so many ways.”