Our project is a collaboration between local and regional congregations, visionary leaders from across the country, and Yale Divinity School (YDS) students, faculty and staff. This initiative is designed to equip congregations with renewed vision, mission, and vibrancy by examining social and cultural contexts impacting partner congregations and helping them gain clarity about values and mission. We will provide an array of opportunities for congregations to engage in transformational learning and growth. We will engage with 40 congregations over the five years of the grant, 10 each year that will work through an extensive self-study facilitated by YDS students in their final year of study. The 40 participating congregations will represent a mix of denominations, size and demographics from across New Haven and the region. Each cohort, of which there will be four, will be engaged in peer support and learning during their program year and beyond. Both clergy and lay leaders will be active in the work of exploring the vision and mission of their congregations. Visiting visionary leaders will provide models of Church that will engage and inspire these leaders to think both within and beyond the traditional roles of Church.
Thriving Congregations Initiative
New Haven, CT