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Garrett-Evangelical Receives $372,000 Sustainability Grant from Lilly Endowment Inc.

December 9, 2019
Lilly Endowment Inc.

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary is pleased to announce it has received a sustainability grant of just over $372,000 from Lilly Endowment Inc. for its “Leading Vibrant Congregations: A Collaboration of Faith and Finance” initiative. With this sustainability grant, the seminary will be able to build upon the outstanding progress made on the programs developed from the original grant it received in 2016.

"The financial and economic challenges facing pastoral leaders and the congregations they serve are daunting, and these challenges are not going away anytime soon. Over the last three years, we have supported pastors by offering resources and training that help them and their congregations face these challenges with confidence and with hope,” said Rev. Katye Chambers, program coordinator for the “Leading Vibrant Congregations” initiative. Some highlights of the initiative’s work include:

  • Developing a 10-week online financial management course called “Financial Management for Churches and Nonprofits,” which, to date, has benefited more than 70 clergy and lay leaders and 41 congregations;
  • Creating, launching, and testing a one-day, in-person “Change Management Seminar”;
  • Launching two new specialized doctor of ministry (DMin) leadership tracks and developing a new payment model for the DMin program to help students budget more effectively. So far, 20 Black and Latinx DMin students have received 50% tuition and fees scholarships, making it easier for them to enroll in these leadership tracks.

Chambers added, “This work is critical to Garrett-Evangelical's mission of preparing skilled, bold, and articulate leaders, as well as our commitment to leading transformative change for the wellbeing of all persons - which includes financial and economic health. We are thrilled that the Lilly Endowment has awarded us a sustainability grant to continue offering these programs for the next three years as we work to make these initiatives an integral part of Garrett-Evangelical's educational mission.”

The sustainability grant will assist in continuing to refine and expand the existing programs and make them fully sustainable by the end of the grant. In addition, Garrett-Evangelical also plans to broaden the academic writing on the economic and financial management challenges facing pastoral leadership, with a principal goal of publishing new theological and interdisciplinary literature.

To learn more about the “Leading Vibrant Congregations: A Collaboration of Faith and Finance” initiative, visit Garrett.edu/FaithandFinance.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family – J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons J.K. Jr. and Eli – through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly & Company. The Endowment exists to support the causes of religion, education and community development. Lilly Endowment’s religion grant-making 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 www.lillyendowment.org.