Local Pastors Clergy Cohort

Program Description

This program will include a clergy cohort with seven local pastors who meet monthly with a Cohort Coach for six months, from Oct 2023-Feb 2024. The learning objectives of this Cohort experience are:

  • Cohort members will be able to articulate the unique role and identity of the pastor and challenges and opportunities of LP ministry for themselves and the congregation.
  • Cohort members will be able to exegete the geographical and missional area of their church using Mission Insite tool and community listening practices.
  • Cohort members will receive support and accountability and be able to identify resources for issues which they confront in their ministry settings.
  • Cohort members will be able to identify growth and learning by participating in and learning the responses from before and after surveys.

Elements of the Cohort experience will include:

  • Six monthly cohort coaching sessions by zoom with Cohort Coach- date and time to be determined by cohort.
  • One 60-minute individual coaching session with Cohort Coach.
  • Study of Effective Small Churches in the 21st Century by Carl Dudley, and Mission Insight tool.
  • Covenant Agreement with your local church to allow for 2 hours/week of your work time to be applied to this Cohort work, plus 2 hours/week of personal time.
  • Confidential cohort meetings, resource sharing, and encouragement conversations.

Abstract of Part-time Local Pastor Research

Cost and Registration

The Leadership Development Area of the Mountain Sky Conference will cover the cost of this coaching program. Participants should order the book Effective Small Churches in the 21st Century by Carl Dudley prior to the cohort's first meeting.


Coach Bio

Dr. Amy Gearhart

Amy has served university, suburban, rural, and urban congregations for over 33 years in Colorado, Missouri, North Carolina, and Illinois. She is currently the Lead Pastor of Arvada UMC in northwest Denver metro-area. In 2020, she was conferred a Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in educational leadership and policy analysis, focusing on organizational leadership, non-profit and leadership development. Her dissertation focus is on Part-time Local Pastors as the fastest growing professional clergy population in the UMC, and their unique experiences and challenges in the Mountain Sky Conference. Leadership and coaching credentials include:

  • 2020 Ed.D. in organizational and educational leadership and policy analysis from University of Missouri

  • 2016 ACC coaching certification from International Coach Federation

  • 2016 Executive Non-Profit Management certification from Duke University

  • 2016 College Teaching certification from University of Missouri

  • 2016 Endorsement as Life Coach by UMEA

  • 2015-2017 Adjunct Faculty, Central Methodist University and University of Missouri

  • 2009-2010 Course of Study Faculty, Saint Paul School of Theology

  • 1993 M.Div. from Duke Divinity School