Skip to main content
Clergy Renewal ProgramPress

190 Congregations Awarded Lilly Endowment 2021 Clergy Renewal Program Grants

By October 5, 2021April 26th, 2023No Comments
Back to News →

En Español

CTS recently announced that 190 U.S. congregations have been selected to receive grants through the Lilly Endowment 2021 National Clergy Renewal Program and the Clergy Renewal Program for Indiana Congregations. The grants help congregations honor and support their pastors by funding a respite from persistent ministerial duties and enabling pastors to engage in a period of extended reflection and renewal. Recipients may use the respite for activities that allow them to reflect and renew while engaging in activities such a travel, scholarly research or immersive experiences with different cultures and traditions.

“Pastors play a critical role in nurturing and guiding their congregations’ work in the Christian tradition, while tending to the soul and psyche of individual members within the congregation,” says Christopher L. Coble, the Endowment’s vice president for religion. “These grants facilitate an opportunity to celebrate pastors for their extraordinary service while making it possible for these men and women to step away from congregational demands and invest in rest and renewal. For more than two decades, these grants have shown that such respites support the vitality of pastors and reinvigorate their congregations as well.”

Congregations in the 2021 programs represent diverse Christian traditions, including Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox parishes and congregations from more than 24 Protestant denominations. Bringing a collaborative element to the grant program, congregations and their pastors worked together to determine how the pastors will use the grants to replenish, restore and renew their ministries.

Pastors may also use time away from their congregations to explore new spiritual disciplines, invest in focused time with loved ones and engage in immersive experiences that enhance their enthusiasm for preaching, ministry and leadership.

Popular activities selected by previous grant recipients include domestic and international travel and encounters with nature. Activities have facilitated enhanced cultural understanding, exploration of church heritage and other activities that aim to enrich pastors and their congregations.

Pastors also plan to use the awards to fund domestic and international travel. For example, one pastor will travel with family to visit his home country of South Korea – where he will continue his study of martial arts – as well as Israel, Asia Minor, and other biblical destinations. Another pastor will travel to Scotland to explore the historic scriptoriums on the islands of Iona and Lindisfarne and then prepare her own manuscript of the Sermon on the Mount incorporating her explorations of biblical text, Celtic lands, and personal history.

In addition to travel as a form of renewal, some pastors will use time away from their congregations to engage in new spiritual disciplines, focus on time with loved ones, and study topics that renew their excitement for preaching and congregational life. Activities for congregations include exploring their own spiritual stories, sharing meals together, focusing on intergenerational relationships, and engaging their local communities through service. Dr. Robert Saler, director of the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Programs at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, noted that the grant programs integrate elements of support, trust and encouragement which are all indicators of healthy congregations. “The programs are engineered to honor an innate human need to balance active service to others with periods of reflection and renewal. Animated by a spirit of gratitude and generosity, this program provides a means for congregations to show appreciation for their leaders and actively invest in their pastors’ health and energy for continued ministry,” Saler says.

Since Lilly Endowment introduced the Clergy Renewal Program for Indiana Congregations and National Clergy Renewal Program grants in 1999 and 2000 respectively, more than 3,200 congregations across the nation have participated in the programs. Congregations in the 2021 national program received grants totaling almost $9 million. The grants honor the immense amount of energy, time and leadership that pastors invest in their congregations.

Congregations were invited to apply for program grants of up to $50,000. The application process allows congregations to be actively engaged in designing and developing their pastors’ renewal experiences. An inspiring element of the program is the ability for congregations to allocate up to $15,000 of the grant to fund interim pastoral leadership, as well as renewal activities within the congregation. Pastors’ families can also participate in the renewal activities.

Christian Theological Seminary has administered the Lilly Endowment Clergy Renewal Programs since 2012. “As our nation and our world navigate complex health, environmental and geo-political threats, these grants enable pastors and their congregations to actively partake in the gifts of retreat and renewal that are so needed today,” Saler says.

Award Recipients in the National Clergy Renewal Program:


Huntsville, AL – Southwood Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Will Spink


Tucson, AZ – St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Bart Smith


Brentwood, CA – Brentwood Community United Methodist Church, the Rev. Hyesung Lee
Concord, CA – The Good Shepherd Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Rev. Jeremy Serrano
Downey, CA – El Encino Covenant Church, the Rev. Carlos V. Ortiz Aranda
Fullerton, CA – Casa de Oracion de Fullerton, the Rev. Rogelio Martinez
Healdsburg, CA – First Presbyterian Church Healdsburg, the Revs. Dean and Andrea Kladder
Irvine, CA – New Life Mission Church of Irvine, the Rev. Jeff Suhr
Morgan Hill, CA – Advent Lutheran Church, the Rev. Anita Warner
Redding, CA – First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Rev. Janet Chapman
Saint Helena, CA – Grace Episcopal Church, the Rev. Amy Denney Zuniga
San Carlos, CA – Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, the Rev. Joshua Serrano
San Diego, CA – Hope Presbyterian Church of San Diego, the Rev. Joseph Myung
San Diego, CA – St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Laurel Mathewson
Temple City, CA – Mideast Evangelical Church, the Rev. Maher Makar
Yorba Linda, CA – Messiah Lutheran Church, the Rev. Robert Mooney


Aurora, CO – Mountain View United Church, the Rev. Tracy Laraine Hughes
Colorado Springs, CO – Pikes Peak Metropolitan Community Church, the Rev. Alycia Erickson
Colorado Springs, CO – First Baptist Church, the Rev. Roy Daniel Schumacher
Denver, CO – Denver Community Church, the Rev. Michael Hidalgo
Steamboat Springs, CO – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Catie Greene


Hamden, CT – Christian Tabernacle Baptist Church, the Rev. Keith A. King
Milford, CT – The First United Church of Christ, Congregational, the Revs. Adam Eckhart and Ashley Grant
Milford, CT – Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Rev. Christopher Files
New Haven, CT – The Connecticut Korean Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Ik Tae Kim
Old Lyme, CT – The First Congregational Church, the Rev. Laura Fitzpatrick-Nager
Southport, CT – Trinity Episcopal Church, the Rev. Margaret (Peggy) Rice Hodgkins
Westport, CT – Saugatuck Congregational Church, the Rev. Alison Patton

District of Columbia

Washington, DC – The National Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Donna Marsh
Washington, DC – Redemption Hill Church, the Rev. William Riedel


Gainesville, FL – Ignite Life Center, the Rev. Mark Vega
Jacksonville, FL – Christ Presbyterian Church in America, the Rev. Chuck Colson
Maitland, FL – Orangewood Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Joseph Creech
Medley, FL – Ministerio Vida Nueva, the Rev. Orlando M. Canales
Miami, FL – Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church, the Rev. Theodis Johnson
New Port Richey, FL – Community Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, the Rev. Victoria Snow
Sebastian, FL – First Presbyterian Church of Sebastian, the Rev. Jeffrey Scott Wood
Switzerland, FL – Geneva Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Joseph Albright


Alpharetta, GA – Open Door Community Church, the Rev. Joshua Cho
Atlanta, GA – Kirkwood United Church of Christ, the Rev. Susannah Davis
Perry, GA – Sojourn Church Ministries, the Rev. Jason Berl
Smyrna, GA – Smyrna 2 Foursquare Church, the Rev. Phillip Manginelli
Stonecrest, GA – First African Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Mark A. Lomax
Suwanee, GA – Atlanta Promise Church, the Rev. Bryan Choe


Alton, IL – Alton Mission Free Methodist Church, the Rev. Peter Hough
Arthur, IL – Arthur Mennonite Church, the Rev. Glen Rhodes
Bolingbrook, IL – Friendship United Methodist Church, the Rev. KyungHae Anna Shin
Chicago, IL – Fourth Presbyterian Church of Chicago, the Rev. Shannon Kershner
Chicago, IL – Pilgrim Lutheran Church English Synod, the Rev. Kristian Johnson
Chicago, IL – St. Mark Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Rev. Lawrence James Clark
La Grange, IL – First Congregational Church of La Grange, the Rev. Carla (Carly) Stucklen Sather
University Park, IL – Faith Movers Church, the Rev. Moses Herring
Wheeling, IL – First Korean United Methodist Church, the Rev. Kwangtae Kim


Marion, IA – Cornerstone Church, the Rev. Matthew Proctor
Mount Pleasant, IA – First Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Trey Hegar
Johnston, IA – Meredith Drive Reformed Church, the Rev. Suzanne Vogel


Lexington, KY – South Elkhorn Christian Church, the Rev. Michael Swartzentruber
Louisville, KY – Sojourn Community Church, the Rev. Jamaal Williams


New Orleans, LA – St. Charles Ave. Baptist Church, the Rev. Elizabeth Lott
Shreveport, LA – Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church, the Rev. Theron Jackson


Holden, ME – Holden Congregational Church, United Church of Christ, the Rev. Linette Carol George


Annapolis, MD – Broadneck Baptist Church, the Rev. Abby Thornton Hailey
Baltimore, MD – Memorial Episcopal Church, the Rev. Grey Maggiano
Clarksville, MD – Linden Linthicum United Methodist Church, the Rev. Gayle Annis-Forder
Crownsville, MD – St. Stephen’s-Severn Parish, the Rev. Victor Hailey
Glenwood, MD – St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Glenwood, the Rev. Dina van Klaveren
Olney, MD – St. John’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Henry McQueen
Solomons, MD – Solomons United Methodist Church, the Rev. Dottie Yunger


Andover, MA – South Church in Andover, the Rev. Dana Allen Walsh
Concord, MA – Trinity Church, the Rev. Nancy Jane Hagner
Lowell, MA – Eliot Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Heather Prince Doss
Newton, MA – Newton Covenant Church, the Rev. Garrett Smith
Sheffield, MA – Christ Trinity Church, the Rev. Erik Karas
Walpole, MA – United Church in Walpole, the Rev. Anna Flowers


Kalamazoo, MI – Westwood Christian Reformed Church, the Rev. Michael Koetje
Royal Oak, MI – St. John’s Episcopal Church, Royal Oak, the Rev. Beth Taylor


Afton, MN – Memorial Lutheran Church of Afton, the Rev. Elizabeth Damico-Carper
Minneapolis, MN – Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church, the Rev. Judy Zabel
Minneapolis, MN – Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, the Rev. Ingrid Rasmussen
Robbinsdale, MN – Robbinsdale Parkway United Church of Christ, the Rev. Kathleen Brigid Itzin
St. Paul, MN – Christ Lutheran Church on Capitol Hill, the Rev. Joy McDonald Coltvet
St. Paul, MN – Saint Anthony Park Lutheran Church, the Rev. Jill Rode
Stillwater, MN – Trinity Lutheran Church, the Rev. Christine Bellefeuille


Columbia, MS – New Life Fellowship Full Gospel Church, the Rev. Terry L. Weems


Great Falls, MT – First Congregational United Church of Christ, the Lynne Spencer-Smith


Omaha, NE – First Covenant Church, the Rev. Greg Applequist

New Hampshire

Bedford, NH – Bedford Presbyterian Church, the Rev. John Sawyer
Peterborough, NH – Union Congregational Church of Peterborough, the Rev. Robert Marrone
Wolfeboro, NH – All Saints’ Episcopal Church, the Rev. William R. Petersen

New Jersey

Montclair, NJ – Redeemer Church of Montclair, the Rev. Daniel B. Ying
Paterson, NJ – Riverside Reformed Church, the Rev. Jonatan Basora
Trenton, NJ – Westminster Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Karen Hernandez-Granzen

New Mexico

Albuquerque, NM – Albuquerque Mennonite Church, the Rev. Erica Lea-Simka
Albuquerque, NM – Rio Grade Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Linda Roberts-Baca
Las Vegas, NM – First United Presbyterian Church, NM, the Rev. Kathryn Palmer

New York

Amityville, NY – Christian Life Center Church, the Rev. Terrance Daye
Bronx, NY – Missionary Church of Christ, the Rev. Hector L Bonano
Brooklyn, NY – True Holy Church of God in Christ Jesus, the Rev. Vivian Grubb
Dunkirk, NY – Iglesia Getsemani, the Rev. Carlos Llera
Milbrook, NY – Grace Episcopal Church, the Rev. Matthew Calkins

North Carolina

Asheville, NC – Land of the Sky United Methodist Church, the Rev. Sara Wilcox
Cary, NC – Christ the King Lutheran Church, the Rev. Daniel Pugh
Cary, NC – Good Shepherd United Church of Christ, the Rev. Carla Gregg-Kearns
Durham, NC – RTP Global Mission Church, the Rev. Caden Lee
Pittsboro, NC – Iglesia Bautista Misionera Roca Fuerte, the Rev. Javier Benitez Marcos
Raleigh, NC – West Raleigh Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Katherine Rick-Miller
Wilmington, NC – First Baptist Church, the Rev. Jayne Davis
Winston-Salem, NC – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Dixon Kinser

North Dakota

Minot, ND – Christ Lutheran Church, the Rev. Desirée Uhrich


Akron, OH – New Hope Baptist Church, the Rev. David Nelson
Columbus, OH – New Faith Baptist Church of Christ, the Rev. David Nelson
Columbus, OH – The Church on Como, the Rev. Timothy Tabor
Euclid, OH – East Shore United Methodist Church, the Rev. Armando C. Arrellano
Greenville, OH – Greenville Evangelical United Methodist Church, the Rev. Jeff Harper


Albany, OR – Albany Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Brandon Douglas Lewis
Beavercreek, OR – Beavercreek United Church of Christ, the Rev. Jennifer Seaich
Lincoln City, OR – Congregational Church of Lincoln City, United Church of Christ, the Rev. Michael Ray Grogan
McMinnville, OR – First United Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Matthew Johnson
Milwaukie, OR – Hawthorne Foursquare Church, the Rev. Cameron Marvin
Milwaukie, OR – Oak Hills Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Jeremy Sanderson
Portland, OR – West Hills Covenant Church, the Revs. Stephanie and Mark Mathis
Yachats, OR – Yachats Community Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Robert Barrett


Lancaster, PA – Community Mennonite Church of Lancaster, the Rev. Susan Gascho-Cooke
Pittsburgh, PA – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Noah Evans
Telford, PA – Franconia Mennonite Church, the Rev. Josh Meyer
Wayne, PA – The Church of the Savior, the Rev. Kevin Flannery

South Carolina

Greenville, SC – First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Rev. Johnna Camp

South Dakota

Aberdeen, SD – Our Savior Lutheran Church, the Rev. Jordon Andreasen
Platte, SD – Platte Christian Reformed Church, the Rev. Drew Hoekema


Bristol, TN – Tri-City Korean Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Seong Cheol Im
Memphis, TN – Abyssinian Missionary Baptist Church, the Rev. Earle Fisher
Oakland, TN – Oakland Presbyterian Church PC(USA) – the Rev. Stephanie Bussey-Spencer Patton


Arlington, TX – The Welcome Table Christian Church, the Rev. Jeremy Skaggs
Dallas, TX – The Church of the Transfiguration (Episcopal), Inc., the Rev. Robert Casey Shobe
Elgin, TX – First Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Amy Lynn Meyer
Houston, TX – Clear Lake Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Rachel Young
Kingwood, TX – Kingwood Christian Church, the Rev. Chad Mattingly
San Antonio, TX – St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Elizabeth Clemmer Knowlton
Waxahachie, TX – Ferris Avenue Baptist Church, the Rev. David Allen Brown


White River Junction, VT – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the Rev. Scott Neal


Alexandria, VA – Church of Saint Clement Episcopal, the Rev. Robin Razzino
Keswick, VA – Grace Episcopal Church, the Rev. Gary Miles Smith
King George, VA – St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Owens, the Rev. Leonard (Lee) Farirayi Gandiya
Mechanicsville, VA – Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, the Rev. Marlene Fuller
Newport News, VA – First Baptist Church, the Rev. Juan L. Garcia
Portsmouth, VA – Grove Baptist Church, the Rev. Melvin Marriner
Richmond, VA – Grace Baptist Church, the Rev. Suzanne Vinson


Belfair, WA – Belfair Community Baptist Church, the Rev. Jamie McCallum
Bellingham, WA – First Congregational Church, the Rev. Sharon Benton
Pullman, WA – St. James Episcopal Church, the Rev. Linda M. Young
Richland, WA – All Saints’ Episcopal Church, the Rev. Jane Schmoetzer
Seattle, WA – Sanctuary Christian Reformed Church, the Rev. Mark Alan Mohrlang
Spokane Valley, WA – Veradale United Church of Christ, the Rev. Genavieve May Heywood


Eau Claire, WI – The First Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Kathryn Reid Walker
Mukwonago, WI – First Congregational Church, the Rev. Kevin M. Clark
Onalaska, WI – First Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Rev. Jason Stanton

Award Recipients in the Clergy Renewal Program for Indiana Congregations:

Anderson – St. John’s Ev. Lutheran Church, the Rev. Matt Manning
Bloomington – Redeemer Community Church of Bloomington, the Rev. Chris Jones
Bloomington – St. Paul United Methodist Church, the Rev. David Mullens
Columbus – Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Columbus, the Rev. Nicolas Cable
Donaldson – Evangelical Covenant Church, the Rev. Mark Harder
Elkhart – Creekside Church of the Brethren, the Rev. Rosanna McFadden
Elkhart – Michiana Korean Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Daniel Kang
Evansville – First Ebenezer Baptist Church, the Rev. Veltri Taylor
Evansville – Most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin, the Rev. Bernard Etienne
Fort Wayne – Heartland Church of Fort Wayne, the Rev. Dave Frincke
Fort Wayne – Redeemer Lutheran Church, the Rev. David Petersen
Fort Wayne – St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church, the Rev. Paul Andrew Offhaus
Goshen – Assembly Mennonite Church, the Rev. Lora Nafziger
Goshen – College Mennonite Church, the Revs. Talashia Keim and Daniel Yoder
Greencastle – Greencastle Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Wesley Kendall
Indianapolis – Common Ground Christian Church, the Rev. Jeff Alan Reichanadter
Indianapolis – Fairview Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Shawn Coons
Indianapolis – Heather Hills Baptist Church, the Rev. Trey Oetjen
Indianapolis – Iglesia Hermandad Cristiana (Discipulos de Cristo), the Rev. Berenice Gil Soto
Indianapolis – Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church, the Rev. Kevin Long
Indianapolis – New Beginnings Fellowship Church, the Rev. James Jackson
Indianapolis – New Revelation Christian Church, the Rev. Richard Reynolds
Indianapolis – Woodruff Place Baptist Church, Indianapolis, the Rev. Ronald Nunez
Martinsville – Martinsville First Church of the Nazarene, the Rev. Jeff Floyd
Muncie – First Presbyterian Church of Muncie, the Rev. Myungku Lee
New Castle – New Covenant Worship Center, the Rev. Tom Preble
Noblesville – Living Branch Church PCA, the Rev. Keith Doane
Saint John – Suncrest Christian Church, the Rev. Daniel J. Donaldson
Seymour – Bethel Community Church, the Rev. Sondra Gentry
South Bend – Clay United Methodist Church, the Rev. Brian Durand
South Bend – South Bend City Church, the Rev. Jason Miller
Tell City – Tell City 1st Baptist Church, the Rev. Daniel Hopkins
Valparaiso – Valparaiso First United Methodist, the Rev. Kevin Miller
Zionsville – Zionsville Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the Rev. Tyler Andrew Thompson

About Lilly Endowment Inc.
Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly and his two sons, Eli and J.K. Jr., with gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical company. The Endowment exists to support the causes of religion, education and community development. Lilly Endowment’s religion grantmaking is designed to deepen and enrich the religious lives of American Christians. It does this largely through initiatives to enhance and sustain the quality of ministry in American congregations and parishes. More information can be found at