Welcome to Thriving

Institute for Pastoral and Congregational Thriving


The Institute for Pastoral and Congregational Thriving is made possible through a generous grant from the Lilly Endowment, Inc. Lilly is especially interested in creative efforts to foster and strengthen collegial relationships among clergy and strengthen congregational ministries. The Thriving Institute was created to support clergy thriving as pastoral leaders in congregational settings, providing opportunities for pastors to find and build relationships with pastoral colleagues who can serve as exemplars and guide them through professional and personal challenges that emerge over the course of a ministerial career. It was also created to help churches more effectively recognize and adapt to their changing social and cultural contexts, exhibit clarity of mission, and cultivate Christian practices.

Our Vision

The ultimate aim of Pastoral Thriving is to enhance and sustain the conditions needed for pastors to thrive in congregational leadership and thus enrich and sustain the vitality of the congregations and parishes they serve. This means creating space for a group of pastors to dialogue with colleagues, receive mentoring, be honored and enriched through time away, and be given space to relax, pray, or rest as needed. All cohorts are designed around these elements.

The ultimate aim of Congregational Thriving is to help congregations strengthen their ministries and thrive so they can better help people deepen their relationships with God, enhance their connections with each other and contribute to the flourishing of their communities and the world. To this end, congregations will be chosen as part of a Congregational Thriving cohort for their work of spiritual formation and mission within their context.