Who are these groups for?
The Proclamation Project Cohort Groups are intended for any Disciple serving in a ministry setting in which preaching is a regular ministry task.
The theme-based cohort groups are designed for preachers who want to make a commitment to exploring their preaching at a deeper level, focused around a particular theme.
What is the application timeline?
Applications are due January 20, 2024. Groups will be announced by February 1, with the first group meeting toward the end of February.
Applicants will be asked to request a reference from their regional minister. Please send this link to your regional minister and ask them to fill it out by January 20, 2024. (If your regional leadership is in transition or your regional minister is not available, please contact us to make other arrangements.)
What are the themes?
There will be two theme-based cohort groups in 2024-2025.
Media and Technology: This group will explore the intersection of technology and Christian preaching and reflect on the task of preaching in a digital age. The group will learn to harness the power of innovative tools and digital platforms, enriching the timeless art of preaching with contemporary approaches to engage and inspire our communities.
Storytelling: This group will focus on storytelling as an essential and life-giving act of preaching. By exploring the craft of contemporary storytellers, mining their own experiences, and expanding what counts as a church-worthy story, preachers in this group will enhance their own skills and find new ways to proclaim the good news.
Who will be in the groups?
Groups will be comprised of 6-10 people and a facilitator. Each group will be formed with the intent of reflecting the diversity of the church.
What will the groups do?
The agenda and curriculum will be set by the group itself, with the help of a facilitator who will guide the group in shaping its work.
In addition to the program determined by the group, each group will:
- Meet online monthly through July 2025
- Meet in person in fall 2024 and at General Assembly 2025
- Provide opportunities for workshopping sermons
- Offer support and encouragement to peers
Who are the facilitators?
Media and Technology:
Rev. Orlando Scott
Rev. Orlando Scott is the pastor of the AMPLIFY Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the Executive Director of the Shiloh Mission and Ministry Center Snellville, GA. Rev. Scott launched AMPLIFY in the initial moments of COVID-19 with a bible study addressing anxiety.
Rev. Scott is a staff chaplain at Northside Duluth medical center where he specializes in emergency and critical care chaplaincy. He has served as clinical supervisor for 1st and 2nd year seminarians at Candler School of Theology, Emory University. Orlando is the proud father of two amazing teenagers, enjoys nature and jazz music.
Rev. Rebecca Anderson
Rebecca Anderson is co-pastor at two churches in Chicago. She spends Sunday mornings at Bethany UCC, a 128-year old neighborhood church, and Sunday evenings at Gilead, a queer storytelling bar church that she started from scratch with friend and colleague Vince Amlin.
She is active in the Chicago storytelling scene and is the founder and head honcho of Earshot Stories, running storytelling workshops across the country and now internationally (thanks, Canada). She has created events at the Wild Goose Festival, General Synod (UCC), and General Assembly (Disciples of Christ). She’s always looking for the least crowded forest preserves, her biscuits are unparalleled, and she knows the best places to pick juneberries.
What is the time commitment for group members?
Group members should commit to meeting online (via Zoom or a similar platform) once a month, beginning in February 2024 and continuing through July 2025.
Groups will meet in person twice, and group members should commit to attending these events:
- Disciples Preaching Retreat in Phoenix, AZ, October 28-30, 2024
- General Assembly in Memphis, July 12-15, 2025
There may be occasional preparation required between group meetings, which will be determined by the goals of the group. For example, the storytelling group may commit to watching/listening to a storytelling event. Or a group members may ask each other for feedback on sermon preparation.
What are the financial obligations of group members?
The Proclamation Project (which is supported by funding from the Lilly Endowment) will cover most of the costs of participation in the program, including program coordination, facilitation, and travel expenses for the in-person gatherings. There may be some incidental costs incurred by group members, depending on activities determined by the group; in those cases financial assistance may be available if needed.