The Synod of the Covenant, in collaboration with Alma College, Johnson C. Smith Seminary, and the Presbytery of Cincinnati, has been awarded a generous grant of $1.25 million from Lilly Endowment Inc. This grant is funded through Lilly Endowment’s Compelling Preaching Initiative, and its purpose is to establish the Cultivating the Gift of Preaching Initiative. 

The goal of this program is to identify, train, and support emerging preachers within the Synod of the Covenant, providing them with the tools for sustainable ministry and strengthening the Church’s proclamation of the Gospel. Recognizing the need for rigorous homiletical and theological training, the initiative aims to enhance preaching in all eleven presbyteries and 650 churches within the Synod.

The Synod Executive, Chip Hardwick, expresses enthusiasm for this initiative, emphasizing the program’s response to the longing for more training among faithful elders and leaders who preach regularly. The initiative will offer monthly cohort groups, annual conferences, and spiritual practices to equip preachers. 

Lilly Endowment’s Compelling Preaching Initiative, launched in 2022, supports a diverse range of 81 organizations, reflecting the richness of Christianity in the United States. The overall aim of the initiative is to ensure that the gospel message remains accessible to all audiences.