Pastoral Excellence Network

Dedicated to strengthening and sustaining excellent pastoral leaders for a lifetime of creative and effective service to the church

Welcome to the Pastoral Excellence Network! Our mission is to work with congregations and church-related institutions to help new pastors get the best possible start in ministry and to encourage experienced pastors to sustain their vitality by participating in communities of ongoing support and learning.

Drawing on more than ten years of faithful and inspired work to foster and sustain excellence in pastoral leadership that involved congregations, seminaries, retreat centers, judicatories, and regional organizations in 28 states and 25 denominations, we seek to harvest the learning and share a feast of resources and practices from Lilly Endowment's Transition into Ministry (TiM) and Sustaining Pastoral Excellence (SPE) initiatives so that current efforts can be strengthened and new projects can be launched and grow to maturity. Our aim is to help the church surround every pastor with opportunities for support and learning. Watch a video on what's special about Sustaining Pastoral Excellence on the Resources page.

Our goal is to sustain the momentum and amplify the impact of Lilly Endowment's Transition into Ministry (TiM) and Sustaining Pastoral Excellence (SPE) programs. Together we seek to expand the body of wisdom about what constitutes pastoral excellence as we lean forward into a church whose future we cannot yet fully see or imagine.

We invite you to explore this site for resources, networks, examples, and events. Start with the About page to learn more about our activities. Read our blog. Join us on Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for the e-newsletter or RSS feed.  We hope to see you soon!

The Pastoral Excellence Network is funded by a grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc., a private Indianapolis-based philanthropic foundation. Through its religion grantmaking, Lilly Endowment seeks to deepen and enrich the lives of American Christians. It does this largely through initiatives to enhance and sustain the quality of ministry in American congregations and parishes. The Pastoral Excellence Network is one of five programs of the Center for Pastoral Excellence at Christian Theological Seminary.

Featured Posts

  • Testimonial dinner for our severe teachers

    Posted Apr 10, 2014 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By Lawrence Peers | There is a healing ritual that I have facilitated at clergy retreats over the last ten years that is called, “A Testimonial Dinner for Severe Teachers.” I have adapted this particular activity from the Spiritual Eldering Institute, and I have used it most often at retreats for clergy approaching retirement within ten years or less.

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  • Mentoring strengthens us all

    Posted Mar 27, 2014 | Pastoral Excellence Network

    By George Mason | The headline in The Dallas Morning News sports story read: “Mentor role was not good fit for Kinsler.” The article went on to report on a story from ESPN The Magazine that second baseman Ian Kinsler had blanched at the request of Texas Rangers’ management to give leadership to younger players on the baseball team. He was subsequently traded to the Detroit Tigers and let his feelings be known.

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