“The Small Church Residency Program: Where the Needs of Christ’s Church and the Gifts of First-Call Pastors Meet,” a free webinar hosted by the Company of New Pastors (CNP), will be offered Feb. 24 at 2:00 p.m. EST. 

The webinar is the second in an ongoing series of new, interactive, educational events that have been scheduled as part of CNP’s continuing expansion plans

Company of New Pastors—a transition-into-ministry program for seminary students and first-call pastors—started to broaden its reach and availability last fall by launching programs on pastoral formation open to the whole church. 

“We are committed to reaching out to even more pastors as we seek to support them for a lifetime of ministry,” says the Rev. Karen Russell, who coordinates the CNP program. “Because we are in a unique position to offer resources to church and mid council leaders, we are making these webinars available free of charge both as a service to the church and as a way of introducing CNP to those who may not be familiar with the program.” 

The Rev. Cynthia Cushman

The Rev. Cynthia Cushman —File photo

The presenter for the Feb. 24 webinar will be the Rev. Cynthia Cushman, who coordinates the Small Church Residency Program for the office of Theology and Worship

As a small church pastor, presbyter and administrator, Cushman brings extensive experience to her role in leading the team in support of this innovative program, which—since 2010—has paired small churches in rural, small town and urban settings with recent seminary graduates for a two-year pastoral residency.  

“The heart of the mission of the Small Church Residency Program is to help small churches begin to step outside of themselves and discover the many ways that they can be the face and hands of Christ in their community,” Cushman says. “Providing first-call pastors with the opportunity to walk with a congregation through the exciting process of church transformation is one of the great joys of this program. Because we hope to reach and partner with even more presbyteries and congregations in 2015, we look forward to providing information on the program to a broad audience of church leaders.” 

Cushman’s 30-minute presentation will conclude with a 15-minute Q&A time. 

“If you are a congregation seeking pastoral leadership, a first-call candidate seeking a challenging opportunity, a presbytery leader seeking ways to help underserved congregations, or a church member with a heart for small church ministry, this webinar is designed to help you determine whether this is the program for you,” says Cushman. 

Participants will learn more about how the program is structured, including expectations for candidates, congregations, and presbyteries, and the specific steps that are required to become a part of the program.  

The event is open to all, and registration is quick and easy. 

On March 3, at 2:00 p.m. EST, the Rev. Dr. Charles Wiley, coordinator for the office of Theology and Worship, will lead a webinar entitled, “Grace and Gratitude: The Heart of Reformed Theology and Worship.” 

Complete details on the March 3 webinar—including registration information—will be released next month.