Our Synod community is deeply blessed with incredible diversity. With this gift comes a profound responsibility to be sure that the gift of these voices is heard and reflected within the leadership of our governance structures. The Robert L. Washington Scholars Program is intended to lift up, support, and equip a diversity of leaders to serve our mid-councils and other areas of leadership.
In the midst of an autumn coldsnap, around twenty church leaders who are between the ages of 25-40 gathered in upstate New York at the Silver Bay YMCA Camp & Conference Center for the 2017 Emerging Leaders Gathering. Though the weather was chilly, the community was not!
The Synod of the Northeast is blessed with a strong cohort of younger leaders, and while only a fraction of their number attend the annual Gathering each year, they consistently report that the community it fosters is crucial to their ongoing energy and enthusiasm for ministry.
In mid-January, the Synod’s highly energized Committee on Representation met to review fourteen Robert Washington Scholar applications and to select the first Scholars. This was an extremely competitive process. Getting to three Scholars was not easy. The Scholars program will cultivate executive leadership training by providing resources for robust discernment regarding the Scholar’s vocation, call and abilities for service to the Church. The first Scholars will attend the Executive Leadership Certificate Program at McCormick Theological Seminary as well as retreats with Synod staff. We present to you our inaugural Robert L. Washington Scholars!